Some watches get lost to time and others stand the test of it. The Baume et Mercier Riviera is certainly one of the latter. First launched in 1973, the Riviera was designed to embody the refined and elegant lifestyle of the south east French coast of the same name. At the time of its release, it broke the boundaries of traditional watch design, embracing a strong presence characterised by a twelve sided bezel and integrated stainless steel bracelet. This striking silhouette returns as part of the Swiss watch brand’s 2021 Watches & Wonders exhibit as the Baume et Mercier Riviera watch collection.
It’s not gone unnoticed that Baume et Mercier are changing direction, or at least temporarily steering off course when it comes to their design codes. The newly released Baume Ocean is a great example of this, a limited edition with a rather futuristic aesthetic engineered almost entirely out of recycled plastic with a woven RPET strap lined with natural black cork. While this 2021 Watches & Wonders release hints to the future, the new Baume et Mercier Riviera watch collection is very much a nod to their past and yet somehow remains explicitly contemporary in its delivery. This new direction is a welcome change and is conveyed in such a way that the brand’s philosophy, something regarded highly by collectors and connoisseurs, remains untouched as their expertise in watchmaking, technology and style remains embodied in their new releases.
Just like their 1970’s predecessors, the new Baume et Mercier Riviera watches are strongly characterised by their twelve sided bezels equipped with four screws, uniquely decorated dials and integrated straps in steel or rubber. There are currently three main sub-groups of the Riviera to choose from. The more luxurious of the three is the Riviera Baumatic, the smallest is the Riviera 36mm and the classic design for men’s wrists is the Riviera 42mm. They all follow suit in their stainless steel construction but differ in their proportions, movements and dial designs.
Baume et Mercier Riviera Baumatic
The reason we say the Baume et Mercier Riviera Baumatic is the more luxurious out of the three designs is simply because of its in-house BAUMATIC calibre. First launched last year in the Clifton Baumatic watch, the manufacture movement delivers a five-day power reserve, chronometer precision, magnetic protection and extended service internals, all at a remarkably affordable price (at least when compared to other manufacture movement watches). The automatic winding movement can also be seen through the smoked sapphire dials alongside the uniquely exposed date ring which becomes clearer at its non-smoked aperture at 3 o’clock.
There are currently two Baume et Mercier Riviera Baumatic watches to choose from. The first under reference 10616 is the more refined out of the two, dressed in classic stainless steel with a blue smoked sapphire dial and matching stainless steel bracelet. The second reference 10617 delivers the dodecagonal case with a black coating, a black smoked crystal dial and a sporty black rubber strap. Both variants boast a 100 metre water resistant, sapphire crystal case backs, rhodium plated hour, minute and seconds hands and an adjustable triple folding buckle with security push-pieces.
Baume et Mercier Riviera 42mm
Almost entirely loyal to the original Baume et Mercier Riviera from 1973, the 42mm reference revisits all the fundamentals of the iconic model with a matching sized case with dodecagonal bezel and a uniquely decorated dial that is designed to symbolise the convergence of the mountains and the ocean. There are four reiterations of the Baume et Mercier Riviera 42 watch to choose from. Reference 10619 delivers the stainless steel case with a blue dial and blue rubber strap while reference 10620 follows suit but with a integrated metal bracelet. Model 10621 comes dressed in an inky black dial and 10622 shimmers with a textured silver dial.
All four references differ only in their dial and strap but remain the same in their 42mm proportions, 4 screw bezels, 100 metre water resistance and satin polished finishing. Housed within each Baume et Mercier Riviera 42mm watch is the Swiss made Sellita SW200 calibre, an automatic winding movement which alongside central hands for hours, minutes and seconds and date function promises a power reserve of 38 hours. The movement can be admired through the sapphire crystal case back, the same material used to protect the dial.
Baume et Mercier Riviera 36mm
Designed by Baume et Mercier with women in mind, but certainly not unsuited to men favouring smaller sized timepieces, the Baume et Mercier Riviera 36 watch collection is the only sub-group within the Riviera family to use a Swiss made quartz movement. The Ronda 714Li calibre maintains the central hands for hours and minutes and date window at 3 o’clock but lacks seconds and is kept hidden behind a screw down case back. The 36mm diameter also differs in its bezel, which although still retains its iconic twelve-faceted profile, replaces the screws on two of the four references with sparkling diamonds.
The first Baume et Mercier Riviera 36mm reference is 10612 which delivers the 50 metre water resistant stainless steel case with a matching steel bracelet and a stunning pastel blue dial. Next up is reference 10613 which delivers a slightly sportier and more contemporary aesthetic with a black dial, black rubber strap and diamond screws on the bezel. The last two references look incredibly similar, the first being 10614 with a silver patterned dial, diamond screws and steel bracelet and the second 10615 opts for all the same colouring and strap but with normal screws rather than gemstones.
You can shop the entire Baume et Mercier Riviera watch collection on the Jura Watches website today. Simply get in touch with the team on 01335 453453 or send us a message at email@example.com for more information and to learn more about the latest Baume et Mercier 2021 Watches & Wonders releases.