BY DHANANJAY PATHAK
Oris is one of the few watch brands that has been working consistently towards the preservation of Mother Nature. Last year we saw the release of watches such as the Great Barrier Reef Limited Edition III, the Oris Clean Ocean Limited Edition and the Oris Blue Whale Limited Edition, all of which were a result of Oris’ participation in several initiatives aimed at keeping our ocean waters clean and underwater species safe. For 2020, the noble intent remains strong at Oris, as the brand has now presented us with the Oris Aquis Lake Baikal limited edition. This new watch has been jointly created by Oris and the Lake Baikal Foundation, a research center that’s actively working to protect Lake Baikal, the world’s deepest freshwater lake.
Right off the bat, it is the dial on this watch that steals the show. To re-create the cold frozen waters of Lake Baikal during winters, Oris has presented the dial in a nice icy blue color and has also given it a stunning gradient effect for added visual dynamism. It begins with a whitish blue shade at the center and ends with a darker blue hue on the outer periphery. Apart from this, the rest of the layout is a familiar affair. You have polished applied markers representing hours, a printed white minute track and a nicely positioned date window at 6. Time can be read easily using the well-proportioned handset that along with the markers has been filled with potent superluminova for great underwater visibility.
The distinctive kettle shaped case has always been a strong design element of the Aquis line up and the Baikal limited edition is no different. It measures a rather large 43.5mm in diameter, but the sharply angled lug structure combined with the integrated bracelet should ensure good wrist comfort. Sitting on top of the case is a sapphire crystal and a uni-directional dive time bezel with a blue ceramic insert that matches the dial nicely. Flipping the watch over you get to see a closed case-back that helps in keeping this watch water resistant to 300 meters and has also been beautifully decorated using a motif depicting a frozen Lake Baikal. Beating underneath the case back is the Oris caliber 733. This is a self-winding movement with a Sellita SW200-1 at its base that has been modified to include updates such as the signature red Oris rotor. The movement operates at a frequency of 4Hz and offers a power reserve of around 38 hours.
The new Oris Aquis Lake Baikal limited edition is a handsome looking dive watch that showcases the brand’s commitment towards the conservation of our natural surroundings that are under constant threat for various reasons. Only 1999 pieces of this watch would be produced, and a certain percentage of the sale proceeds would be utilized to support ‘Point No 1’, an ecological monitoring project at Lake Baikal launched in 1945. The watch will retail for CHF 2,250.
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