The International Watch Company, or IWC, is quite dependable when it comes to making elegant, high-quality watches, but they may have outdone themselves this time. The IWC Portuguese Perpetual Calendar is absolutely exquisite in white gold with a brilliant blue dial. If the term “Haute Horlogerie” didn’t already exist, someone would have to invent it to describe this watch. It is a sight to behold, and has inside it some of the most masterfully crafted machinery in the world.
Historically, IWC has demonstrated a knack for developments with the perpetual calendar. In the 1980’s, the brand put out the first one ever that does not require any sort of pushers. All of the calendar’s features can be set using only the crown, and all are adjusted simultaneously, meaning that you don’t have to calculate to find out what the indicator should show. Simply set the date and the rest- including the moonphase, will follow.
The movement inside is the brand’s perpetual calendar caliber 51614, a self-winding system that allows for a seven-day power supply. This is an extremely accurately machine, especially when it comes to keeping up with the moonphases- it would take well over 500 years for the indicator to fall a full day behind. The other indicators on the dial display power reserve, small seconds, four-digit year, month, and day of the week.
With so much information being displayed in four separate indicators, one might expect the dial to have a very cramped look, but that is definitely not the case here. In fact, it still looks roomy. The dial’s azure hue perfectly sets off the white gold of the case. Supposedly, the stuff used to give the metal that brilliant blue color is very hard to find, which adds a little bit to the value and the allure of the watch. The case is 42.3 millimeters, not too large but not small either. The caseback (as well as the glass on the front) is made of sapphire crystal, which allows you see the masterful machinery inside without creating a lot of distraction on the front, as some watches do. The strap to the watch is seven inches of black leather fastened by a deployment clasp.
This absolute delight of a watch is a must-have if you are looking for a new luxury timepiece to add to your collection. With its bewitching beauty and its famed complications, you can’t go wrong with this watch.