After a great success of the Temps Suspendu model, Hermes has created another watch with a similar mischievous timekeeping display. New L‘heure masquee or, in English, Masked Hours timepiece comes with a peculiar, original and charming complication. Its hour hand is actually hidden behind the minute hand and is shown only upon a request. At the same time, the hours for the second time zone (which were also hidden behind the inscription that states “GMT”) are likewise reveled in an aperture at the bottom of the dial. The imaginative newcomer from the Dressage collection by Hermes bases this complication on the mechanism added to its self-winding mechanical Calibre H1925. Hermes Dressage L’heure masque will be available in two limited editions. The steel housed version is made in 1,000 copies and will be sold at the price of $19,500, while the more lavish red gold variation costs $44,000.
Hours Unmasked by a Pusher
Following in footsteps of its award-winning predecessor, new Hermes watch has once again stroke a cord by presenting a remarkably innovative complication that gives that special quality to the watch. In the normal functioning mode, the hour hand lays hidden behind the minute hand that slowly revolves around the dial. Only once the wearer activates the clever mechanism by pressing a pusher which is integrated in the crown, a cam releases the hour hand which then takes its appropriate place on the dial. At the same time, the dual time zone is also exposed on an aperture at the six o’clock position. For the setting of the second time zone that does not need to be GMT despite the inscription that normally covers the aperture, the wearer can use a pushbutton placed on the case-band at the opposite side of the crown.
Silver Opaline Dial & Cushion-Shaped Housing
The complication which is in a way a reversed version of the one used for the Temps Suspendu model is shown on a distinguished silver opaline dial with Arabic numerals with encircled Arabic numerals which are placed on a slightly lower plane than the rest of the flange. The appearance of three-dimensionality is enhanced with the addition of the lowered central segment with a vertical guilloche motif. The stylish silver dial also includes a single triangular diamond-polished hour marker which points to the hours of the second time zone, while the hand includes Superluminova coating for improved visibility.
Hermes Dressage L’heure masque timekeeper is placed inside a smaller sized cushion-shaped housing. The case with distinctively shaped curved lugs is 40.5 mm long and 38.4 mm wide. On its front there is an anti-reflective sapphire crystal. The same material is used for the transparent case back, while the supported waterproofness measures to 50 meters. As for the attachment, Hermes chose a matte brown Havana alligator strap which fastens with a safety folding clasp.
Caliber H1925 with 28 jewels which enables the functioning of the watch is 25 mm wide and 3.7 mm thick. It is automatically wound and supports the power reserve of 45 hours, whereas its regulating organ beats at the frequency of 4 Hz. The mechanism used for the original complication itself is actually wider than the movement with the diameter of 32.5 mm. It also integrates 18 jewels and 95 parts in its construction. When the decorations of the movement are concerned, they include circular-graining and snailing on the base-plate, bridges with satin-brushed finish, while the winding rotor bears the brand’s special decoration motif in the shape of the letter H.
Red Gold or Steel
There are two available versions of the watch and their price is considerably different. The one with a stainless steel casing has the alternatively used reference numbers 040634WW00 and DR5.810.220/MHA and it includes numerals and hands in black gold. On the contrary, more than twice more valuable 5N 750 red gold version comes with 4 N gilded elements on the face. Its steep price of $44,000 is largely determined by the use of the noble material itself. The watch with reference numbers 040645WW00 and DR.5.870.221/MHA includes 85 g of gold used for its case and additional 24.87 g for the clasp.