Watches: Girard-Perregaux 1966 Dual Time Collection

By Thierry Ané on October 7, 2014

With four distinct collections to cater to every watch collector’s tastes in addition to the Haute Horlogerie line, Girard-Perregaux truly has a well-thought offer for those who appreciate the beauty of high-end timepieces. Although I certainly like the variety these clearly separate collections bring, I have to confess that the manufacture’s most traditional line, the “1966”, is by far my favourite. It simply contains some of the most refined timepieces on the market today!

This iconic classically-inspired collection is also extremely comprehensive and revisits all the important complications of Fine Watchmaking. It starts with the 1966 Automatic model that was unveiled with a blue sunburst dial this year and adds a small-seconds on the refined 1966 Small Seconds and Date. It also takes the form of a traditional 1966 Column-Wheel Chronograph or a very useful 1966 Full Calendar model. But it also plays with the pinnacle of Haute Horlogerie with the complex 1966 Annual Calendar and Equation of Time and the legendary 1966 Tourbillon with Gold Bridge.

However, one complication was missing from this impressive list of achievements: the dual time function so useful for frequent travellers. The “1966 Dual Time” models introduced this month, complete the 1966 offering with a second time zone model that has been designed for comfortable handling but in respect of the pure and elegant aesthetic codes of this understated collection.

The brand unveiled two version of this 1966 Dual Time, one with an anthracite grey dial and another model featuring an off-white dial. Both, however, have the same clearly ordered dial to ensure perfect legibility of all functions. Two gold leaf-shaped hands sweep over pink gold baton hour markers and a railroad style minute track to indicate the local time. Unlike most models of the line, they are filled with a white luminescent material to be also visible in the dark. A central seconds hand and a date indication by hand appears in the sub-dial rimmed with a fine godron complete the usual time and date indications.

In addition, a central red hand with a luminescent tip moves over a disc with embossed satin-finish and a 24-hour graduation to indicate the home time. It is easily set forwards or backwards with the two sleek push-pieces on both sides of the fluted crown. In anthracite grey or off-white version, this dial shines by its multi-level construction and the clever alternating textural effects. It manages to be elegant, highly legible and somehow original at the same time.

The 40 mm pink gold case retains all the smooth curves of the 1966 collection. Its classic round shape is enhanced by the slightly convex crystal sapphire and the bevelled and polished bezel. The slender lugs beautifully follow the lines of the wrist for optimal comfort and the fluted crown and push-pieces give a nice contemporary look to the ensemble. A corrector located at 4 o’clock also helps changing the date quickly. Naturally, the case back is transparent to reveal the secrets of the self-winding GP03300-0094 calibre that animates this watch.

The anthracite grey version is mounted on a black alligator strap while the off-white model features a brown alligator strap. Both are secured by a traditional pin buckle in pink gold.

Very few brands manage to arouse my interest with classic timepieces but I must say that every release of a 1966 model gets me excited. Once again, Girard-Perregaux did not disappoint: there is nothing not to like with these 1966 Dual Time models and the real difficulty is to decide which model I like best!

For more information please visit the Girard-Perregaux web site.

For a technical description of the timepieces and additional pictures: