BY NIKHIL KURMALA

Oris are no strangers when it comes to making special edition watches that are attached to an important social cause. From the Oris Staghorn, which helps by supporting the Coral Restoration Foundation’s vital work of preserving the world’s endangered Staghorn coral, to the Oris Hammerhead, a partnership with the non-profit Pelagios Kakunjá that helps support a pioneering shark conservation project, Oris continues its long history of supporting ocean conservation efforts. The latest collaborative timepiece comes in the form of the Aquis Date Relief.

The Oris Aquis Date Relief is a high-performance diver’s watch inspired by Oris’ quest to raise awareness of the importance of water. According to the World Health Organization, 3.4 million people die every year as a result of preventable water-related diseases. Through the Aquis Date Relief, Oris will be supporting the expedition of swimmer and World Economic Forum Davos 2019 Speaker Ernst Brome in his upcoming swim. Dubbed ‘The Blue Miracle’, the swim will see Ernst Brome cross Lake Baikal in Siberia- the world’s largest freshwater lake stretching 800Km- in his attempt to raise awareness of the importance of water.

It is hence no surprise when one finds out that the Aquis Date Relief is inspired by the colour and feeling of water. Though the grey sunburst dial gives the feeling of warmth, the colour is meant to recall the colour of the stormy sea, while the watch’s signature diving scale numerals in relief are a reminder of the texture of choppy water, as well as its elemental role in all life. The timepiece’s red seconds hand not only provides a nice pop of colour but helps indicate not only the time but the urgency of the situation at hand. It’s a nice reminder that timepieces are more than just timekeeping devices: they help share a story.

The Aquis features a stunning ceramic insert on its uni-directional rotating diver bezel, giving the watch a nice contrast to its background. Like all other Aquis models, the Aquis Date Relief is waterproof up to 300 meters. Under the sapphire caseback is the calibre Oris 733, a slightly modified Sellita SW 200-1 with the signature red central rotor. The accurate and reliable movement provides its user with a generous 38 hours of power reserve while remaining robust. The timepiece comes on a choice of straps or a metal bracelet, and its sapphire crystal sits over a dial decorated with applied hour markers, which, like the hour and minutes hands, are filled with luminescent Super-LumiNova.

For many years, Oris has been campaigning to protect and conserve the world’s Oceans as part of a mission to bring change for the better. But we continue to see signs that there is so much work still to do. Oris and Ernst are going their own way through this project to educate thousands of people about the need to conserve the world’s water – before it’s too late.

The Oris Aquis Date Relief will be available as of January 2019 at a price of CHF 1,750 (rubber and leather) or CHF 1,950 (steel bracelet). Visit Oris here.