The Van Cleef & Arpels Complication Poétique Midnight Planétarium: Tracking Time On A Grandly Cosmic Scale
As everyone knows, the choice between looks and functionality is very important in choosing a watch. With The Van Cleef & Arpels Complication Poétique Midnight Planétarium watch all cards have been played on looks, as we can hardly think of a more visually impressive timepiece.
No exaggeration to say that this could be the most beautiful watch ever created. The Van Cleef & Arpels Complication Poétique Midnight Planétarium timepiece features six of the planets of our solar system orbiting the Sun in real time and will allow you to chart their course at any given time of the day. The mechanism behind this amazing timepiece is the work of Christiaan van der Klaauw, who designed a planetarium module over a base automatic mechanical movement. So, with a Swiss-made automatic movement that controls the orbit of the planets on the watch face and with the quality of the craftsmanship entirely beyond compare, we could easily say that the technical part of it is also impressive.
Regarding its functionality, if you have an interest in astronomy then this is certainly the watch for you. Otherwise, we have no idea why you might want to know the location of six of our solar system’s planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn) at any given hour of the day. And considering that Van Cleef & Arpels dedicates the entire dial to displaying the planets and sun and the time is only in 24 hour format (a small comet on the dial moves along a 24 hour track to indicate the hour), we realise that a watch without a minute indicator is a tad inconvenient.
But just look at it: encased in 18ct rose gold and sport double sapphire crystals, with each of those planets – Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn – represented with a precious stone, aventurine, serpentine, chloromelanite, turqoise, red jasper, blue agate and sugilite. The Sun is a similar rose gold to the frame and the strap is made of alligator leather.
Complication Poétique Midnight Planétarium also features a perpetual calendar on the rear of the watch with indicators for the day/night/and year and has a legend to remind you what stones on the front of the watch represent in terms of planets. The star on the face can be repositioned so that it aligns with the Earth, to indicate an anniversary the owner might like the remember.
The price for this lovely and very limited timepiece is available only on request via the company’s website at vancleefarpels.com and it’s not exactly cheap, being around $245,000 in 18k rose gold and $330,000 in 18k rose gold with diamond decoration.
With a stunning look and truly spectacular mechanism inside, The Van Cleef & Arpels Complication Poétique Midnight Planétarium is a incredible feat of art and watch engineering, the most magnificent watch we’ve ever seen.