Watches: Montblanc Heritage Spirit Orbis Terrarum

By Thierry Ané on January 12, 2015

Let’s be honest: the second time zone is certainly the only travel-inspired complication that remains practical on a wristwatch. If you need more than the “Home Time”, and perhaps a day-night indicator for this particular time zone, you will never read that information on your watch but instead rely on the “World Clock” app of your iPhone or any digital display of this type you have decided to install on your phone, tablet or and/or laptop!

That being said, I have always found the presence of additional time zone-related information very poetic on a wristwatch, particularly so when they are accompanied with a figurative representation of the globe. Then, and just for the fun of it, I can spend a lot of time day-dreaming of holidays in far-off destinations while looking at my beautiful timepiece. I will wonder what time it is in St. Barths, whether the sun has already set in Hawaii, or if it is already a new day in Fiji…

In a way, I truly prefer this type of feature on a Haute Horlogerie timepiece than any down-to-earth function that I would need on a daily basis. Isn’t “not being truly necessary” part of the definition of luxury? All the watch enthusiasts who agree with me on this point will certainly appreciate the emotional and poetic content of the new “Heritage Spirit Orbis Terrarum” models that Montblanc will officially unveil during SIHH 2015.

Available in stainless steel and red gold with black alligator strap and matching folding buckle, this 41 mm timepiece with a thickness of 12 mm is a beautiful world timer, executed in the best tradition. The sapphire crystal dial presents a Lambert projection of the Northern Hemisphere with the oceans in deep blue and the continents simply outlined in a lighter shade of blue. A navy blue (night) and white (day) disc revolves underneath in 24 hours and as it fills the inside of the continents with either of these two colours, serves as a day-night indicator. This graphic representation of the course of the day is complemented with the usual 24-city disc and bicolour 24-hour time disc.

The Heritage Spirit Orbis Terrarum is powered by the MB 29.20 calibre developed in-house by Montblanc. This self-winding movement with 42 hours of power reserve can be admired through the transparent case back. Unfortunately no pictures are available yet and we will have to wait our report from Geneva to show the readers some live pictures of this refined watch from all angles. Although I really like the contrast that warm colour of red gold brings to this watch, the stainless steel seems like a very fine watch too and I look forward to discovering them first-hand in two weeks…

For more information please visit the Montblanc web site.

For a technical description of the timepieces and additional pictures: