The last year was definitely the year of the Portofino Family. In 2011, IWC launched two revised and one newly developed watch. The most notable novelty is IWC Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days Watch. The new Portofino is powered by the IWC-manufactured 59210-caliber which will run accurately and reliably for, as the name suggest, full eight days before it automatically stops.
Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days is housed in an elegant, round case with the diameter of 45 mm and the thickness of 12 mm. Although it looks a little bit larger, with a slender lugs and a small winding crown, it is perfectly wearable and appropriate on most wrist sizes. The water-resistance of the case is assured down to 30 meters (100 feet).
Further, a classical looking narrow bezel perfectly rounds the uncluttered dial. The watch is protected on both sides by scratch-resistance sapphire glasses with antireflective coatings. The arched-edged front glass provides perfect readability, while a see-through sapphire-glass back allows an unimpeded view at the mechanical movement.
A Newly Developed Caliber 59210
The new in-house manufactured caliber 59210 mechanical movement, based on the large Caliber 50000, is the first hand-wound movement from Schaffhausen with eight-day power reserve. As IWC announced, their watchmakers were working on the movement for two whole years. I assume that they have done a great job, but considering the fact, it is a newly developed movement that has yet to prove itself over time.
The mechanical movement is quite large with the diameter of 37.9 mm, but it is proportionate to the case size. It is built on 30 jewels and produces 28,800 vibrations per hour, which helps to insure a high level of accuracy.
The Flagship of the Portofino Family
A clean-looking dial features hour and minute hands, markers, Roman numeral 12, a date window, one sub-dial and a power reserve indicator. A little date aperture is located at the 3 o’clock position, a small hacking seconds counter is situated at the 6 o’clock position, whereas a power reserve indicator is positioned between the 8 and 9 o’clock markers.
IWC Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days is available in an 18-karat red gold case with a slate-colored dial and solid gold indices (the referent number is IW510104), or in a stainless-steel case with the choice of a black (IW510102) or a silver-plated dial (IW510103). The first one sports gold plated indices, while the model with a silver dial matches rhodium-plated markers.
The red gold version is the most expensive one in this line and it can be bought for about $20,000, while two other models are much more affordable. They are priced approximately $11,000 each.
For the best comfort of the wearer, IWC attached Portofino Hand-Wound Eighty Days timepieces to fine alligator leather straps from the world-famous Italian shoe manufacturer, Santoni.
Every strap made by a luxury shoemaker, Santoni, has been finished by hand and it comes with exclusive patina-like shimmer, with its own individual nuances of brown color.