Hautlence is a brand I haven’t really picked up on until now when I visited them at Baselworld and got hands-on with some of their best pieces.
Invictus Morpos Signature
This piece was designed with the help of the famous Ex-footballer Eric Cantana, the two-tone titanium case is 42mm x 49mm so a good size for the shape and features a chronograph skeletonised Dubois Dépraz movement on a Soprod A10 base movement showing hours, minutes, small seconds, date and of course, the chronograph. The open worked window between 2 O’clock and 5 O’clock gives a real depth to the piece with the date wheel seemingly buried deep in its heart. The strap is srown hand-sewn hornback crocodile leather with blue topstitching which I think works really well with the blue stitching and the blue of the dial. Other versions are also available like the gold and black PVD coated titanium with black hand-sewn rolled-edge Louisiana alligator rubberized leather strap.
The all polished black DLC-coated titanium version has orange numbers and hands giving the piece a more sporty appeal.
HLRQ 05 Atelier
The Hautlence HLRQ has an in-house calibre with jumping hours, retrograde minutes and a quick set date. The case is 44mm in diameter and is made of black DLC-coated circular fine-brushed grade 2 titanium with orange painted steel horns giving the piece a very sporty feel indeed. The dial is made up of a main minute dial with large hand & minute indicators, the jumping hour indicator is a circular disk around the edge of the escapement on show with only the current hour on show through a window.
This being their marquee piece you can definitely see why with the open worked dial showing retrograde minute, hours and power reserve. When the minute pointer gets to 60 it smoothly moves back to 0 as opposed to snapping back. The next hour plate moves into view through the cut away, to the left of the minutes is a mesmerizing mobile bridge that I could watch for hours, cleverly Hautlence have realised this fact by curving the crystal around the edge, like a crystal waterfall, so that it can be seen from all angles.
The titanium case measures 50mm x 42mm, it’s not small but sits nicely on the wrist given the slightly curved lugs. A brown and black hand-sewn Louisiana alligator leather strap normally resides on the piece but on this one Hautlence have fitted one of their blue rubber straps which in my opinion gives it a totally different feel; leather strap for day/work, rubber strap for weekend. A perfect solution.
Having not seen Hautlence other than in print before I was a little hesitant about visiting, but I’m glad I did. Their pieces are fun, sporty and elegant all rolled in to one, with their Concepts d’Exception and its 3 dimensional crystal they have a pure stunner and I for one love it.
John Galt caught the horology bug back in 2010 on his first visit to a London watch show and has snowballed since; John has become an avid writer and blogger of timepieces of all kinds, from everyday timepieces to modern Luxury Haute Horology, his favorite brands being HYT and Greubel Forsey that push the bounders of modern watch-making. John keeps a keen interest in the UK watch scene with their many emerging brands and timepiece’s. John Galt currently contributes watch related articles for online publications in the UK and USA. You can follow John on Twitter @johng73Read his articles here.