“The Swiss Alp Watch Final Upgrade is a conceptual piece, but it is not a unique piece” announces Edouard Meylan, CEO of H. Moser & Cie. Marking the end of an inspiring concept, the Swiss Alp Watch Final Upgrade will be the climax to the Swiss Alp Watch saga.
“We know that lots of fans will be very disappointed to learn that the Swiss Alp Watch collection will no longer be produced. But all good things have an end! This collection has been very successful and has driven incredible brand awareness since we launched it in 2016. Now, we feel that it is time to move to other things. And I can tell you that we have big things in the pipeline” says Edouard.
The Swiss Alp Watch, when first introduced, was a rhetoric response to the emergence of connected watches and in order to express the need for a nearly two-hundred-year-old brand like H. Moser & Cie. to remain faithful to its values of tradition and mechanical Haute Horlogerie while exploring modern movements. Though the traditional values of mechanical art exude from their ‘rare timepieces’, their communication has always been bolder, on-point and sometimes tongue-in-cheek. “Our communication is opiniated and not provocative. But you are right: there is a balance between tradition and modernity in our products. We create traditional watches, in the respect of our expertise and almost bi-centennial know-how, but we use a contemporary approach through innovative materials, such as the Vantablack®, through modern aesthetic and our philosophy of minimalism. Our watches are mechanical timepieces, classic but never boring, elegant but with a sexy touch, refined but with just the right touch of irreverence. H. Moser & Cie. is the brand of those who want a watch created in the rules of fine watchmaking that does not resemble the watch of his grandfather, it’s for pioneers, rather than followers”, says Edouard.
The 38.2 x 44.0 mm DLC coated steel case is sure an ode to minimalism and understatement. Ultra-contemporary and timeless, while being pioneeristic in spirit. Carrying forward the HMC 324 calibre with a 2.5 Hz frequency, which aids the movement to an output of around 100 hours of power-reserve, the movement remains quite in-line with the predecessors. Though the Concept version with no logo or indices on the dial, does have an interesting feature on the dial. The offset small second at 6 o’clock. “This idea was conceived by a customer and friend of the brand, a true enthusiast and fan of the Swiss Alp Watch collection. He came to visit us with an extremely precise design and we immediately wanted to create this model, perfectly in line with our philosophy, with a touch of humour and a hint of provocation”, explains Edouard. The side-seconds sub-dial was redesigned for the occasion as a shaded disc made up of openings, evoking the constant passing of time, this symbol serves as a reminder that the here and now is all that matters. It quite visually resembles a ‘buffering’ icon that we usually come across on our electronic devices, either while booting up or shutting down. Provocative! we think not. This is how a 100% Swiss Manufacture movement would make a statement on how electronic devices will never replace people and that technology must remain a means and not the end. No better way to stick it to ‘The Man’, than how this Neuhausen am Reinfall manufacture, with 60 employees, does.
So as the last chapter of the Swiss Alp Watch Final Upgrade unveils, we sure would love to get our hands on the same. Knowing Edouard, we are quite sure he’s going to be 10-steps ahead, we could not hold back into asking him “What’s next”?
The maverick decided to leave us with a hint.
“Streamliner has driven H. Moser & Cie. to a new era, says Edouard. This collection represents a step, a milestone for the company. Of course, we will consolidate this collection in 2021, with surprises coming. But we will also launch amazing pieces in the other core collections, such as Heritage, Pioneer and Endeavour. We are working on many concepts focusing on the latest technologies. A big trend for us will also be the Perpetual Calendar. I cannot tell you more, for now, but can only recommend you stay tuned”!