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New Year's ultimate chronographs01

New Year’s ultimate chronographs

January seems like the perfect time for a fresh start and what better way to mark it than with a brand new chronograph? Lay your eyes on these few daring models that are as exquisite as they are mechanically advanced to suit the needs of the modern gentleman. Telling time has never been classier…

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Renowned manufacturer Parmigiani Fleurier has an exciting offer for its loyal customers in the New Year with its first integrated chronograph. The debut of its Tonda Chronor Anniversaire will be making headlines for a while as the timepiece works on multiple levels – not just as a workhorse integrated chronograph movement for the brand. Limited to just 50 pieces, Chronor took six years to develop and is based on a modular construction, with a separate chronograph mechanism sitting on top of one of the company’s automatic base movements. Its idiosyncratic design style shines through in the austere use of interior angles. Price is available on request.

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Another impressive piece comes from IWC Schaffhausen with its new Aquatimer Chronograph Edition “Sharks” that draws attention to the plight of marine animals killed every year. The limited-edition dive watch is accompanied by a copy of TASCHEN’S Sharks by Michael Muller, an extra-large coffee-table book depicting all species of sharks in hundreds of amazing photographs. The watch-and-book combo is marks IWC’s seven-year-old collaboration with the Charles Darwin Foundation. With a sleek grey dial and clean shark motifs in silver – the $12,200-chronogprah comes in a 44 mm stainless-steel case on a black rubber strap with a stainless-steel pin buckle.
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Chopard

Chopard’s Most Collectible Watch

Chopard has always been known for chasing after impossible standards of perfection and timeless minimalism and the new L.U.C. Full Strike minute repeater is a living proof of that. It is not so common that technology and architectural design come together in a marriage of complementing opposites that create a unique object of art.

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Horological connoisseurs will be thrilled with this bold and innovative minute repeater. The L.U.C. Full Strike is a rare watch of exemplary design. Its acoustic qualities make it one of the three best-sounding repeaters created during the last decade. It is capable of producing crisp and clear sounds with both richness and intensity. The gongs are made of sapphire—the same material that forms the upper crystal itself, which helps to enhance the sound.

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The acoustic potential of the crystalline material is immediately made apparent to the true connoisseur. Through innovative design Chopard has managed to simplify the mechanism behind the movement without compromising the harmony of the sub-frequencies produced by metal-on-metal contact in the case and movement. A detailed glimpse of the case reveals an elaborate series of safety systems that protect the movement and smooth the operation of the strike mechanism. The openwork format of the case works well with the architectural design of the piece, which along its sound qualities and idea-based achievement easily make the Full Strike the most collectible watch Chopard has ever built.

Price is available on request, although recommended retail price is around $261,715.

Richard Mille RM 11-02 Le Mans Classic

The Best Auto-Inspired Watches

It’s a universal truth that a superb sports car requires a superb mechanical timepiece to go along with.  So feast your eyes on some of the most technically advanced and elegant auto-inspired watches for 2016.

Baume & Mercier Legendary Drivers Edition Capeland Shelby Cobra 1963 Chronograph

Baume & Mercier Legendary Drivers Edition Capeland Shelby Cobra 1963 Chronograph01

A favourite of vintage car enthusiasts- the Shelby Cobra is the inspiration for the new Baume & Mercier Legendary Drivers Edition Capeland Shelby Cobra 1963 Chronograph. Retailing for $4,850, the 44 mm steel timepiece has yellow-and-green accents, horizontal racing stripes, and hour and minute hands styled after the Cobra’s steering wheel. The chronograph counters are designed to evoke cockpit gauges. The model is available in four 15-piece limited editions and each commemorates a legendary racecar driver: Dan Gurney, Ken Miles, Allen Grant, and Dave MacDonald.

Bremont Jaguar MKIII

Bremont Jaguar MKIII

The Bremont Jaguar MKIII timepiece (priced at $4,795), designed by British watchmaker Bremont is an ode to the classic Jaguar E-Type. Fully loaded with accents that evoke the charisma of vintage Jaguars the watch sports a Jaguar heritage logo positioned above the date window at 6 o’clock. The piece comes in a 43 mm steel case on a blue leather strap. Its closed caseback draws inspiration from the E-Type’s wheel-center detailing.

Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2016 Race Edition

Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2016 Race Edition

Home to the most glamorous racetrack in the world, Monaco is also the place of the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique, a biennial competition for cars from the prewar period to the 1970s. As the official sponsor of the high-profile event Chopard, debuted the Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique 2016 Race Edition (priced at $6,890). The 44.5 mm chronograph is encased in titanium and steel and available in a limited edition of 500 pieces.

pocket watch

A new pocket watch from Hermés

Hermés has long been the epitome of the understated class and timeless charisma of luxury goods that the wealthy are so fond of. Now, the French Maison doesn’t fail to disappoint with a new offering in the form of a transforming pocket watch a rose gold clad in an alligator exterior.

Re-inventing a model that was gifted to the young Jacqueline Hermès in 1912 – the new watch dubbed ‘In the Pocket’ is designed to be worn as a traditional pocket watch or a wristwatch. Available in a 178-piece limited edition, it is the dream-come-true of horse riding aficionados who will no longer have to attach their watches to their clothing or slip them into their pockets.

The rose gold case is fitted with a silver dial with baton-type hands that sweep over pared-down numerals. There is a smaller seconds sub-dial is located at 3 o’clock. The In the Pocket watch is powered by an in-house H1837 automatic movement with a 50-hour power reserve. Its oscillating weight is adorned with the brand’s signature motif “sprinkling of Hs” in a delicate and unobtrusive manner.

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The strap is made of two longer and shorter sections: the plain strap end and the buckle strap end, both hand crafted in the leather-making workshops of La Montre Hermès in Switzerland. Both parts are composed of three layers of leather: alligator; cow leather, which is more durable and robust and a Zermatt calfskin lining. The whole composition balances remarkably on the verge of masculine and feminine, making the In the Pocket watch a suitable piece for both men and women.

Price for the eye-catching piece is 27.000 Euro.

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Electromechanical watches reshaping haute horlogerie

Watches that combine electronics with mechanics is shaping up to be the latest trend on the haut horological scene, where timeless style and understated elegance are the epitome of luxury and refined taste.

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Renowned Swiss manufacturers are beginning to discover the charm of combining traditional mechanical timepieces with the modern, simpler quartz movement. The end result is a powerful amalgam of fine horological mastery and innovative simplicity that produces pieces that balance on past trends and present mechanics. A fine example comes from the well-known house Urwerk with their titanium and steel EMC Black watch on crocodile strap for £100,000. Fully mechanical in its functions, the new EMC also features a tiny integrated circuit board and a minute optical sensor above the balance that can measure the frequency. The wearer can use this feature to check on the isochronism and adjust the rate by turning a small screw on the caseback. The electrical power is mechanically generated thanks to a Lilliputian hand crank set into the side of the watch.

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European Maison Piaget has come up with a white gold Emperador Coussin XL 700P watch on alligator strap for the more modest £56,500. The piece celebrates the brand’s first in-house quartz calibre. Another offer comes from Van Cleef & Arpels in white gold and enamel in the form of the Midnight Nuit Lumineuse watch on alligator strap, whose price is available on request. Jewelry and horology come together to evoke light and enhance the features of the powerful pieces that keep within the boundaries of the mechanical movement.

Apple Watch Series 2

Hermes partners with Apple for the Apple Watch Series 2

Technology and fashion has always gone hand in hand to produce pieces of strong character and purpose-minded artistry. And which two brands are more suited to raise the bar of creative collaboration even further than tech giant Apple and European fashion Maison Hermés? After the successful launch of the first Apple Hermès watch – the elegant original line defined by timeless craftsmanship, has been revisited. The end result is the introduction of the Apple Watch Hermès Series 2.

The expanded collection sports a new Double Buckle Cuff and a price tag of $1,499. It comes in premium Swift or Epsom calfskin leather. The 38 mm stainless-steel case has a ceramic back, accentuated by the leather strap in one of three hues: Rose Jaipur, Étoupe, and Bleu Agate. Another new addition that gives the timepiece its technical allure is the Single Tour Deployment Buckle priced at $1,399. It comes complete with a Hermès Barénia calfskin leather band, a 42 mm case, and a hidden deployment buckle that opens with a single click of the two side buttons.

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Returning for the Series 2 collection are both the Single Tour model with either a 38 mm or 42 mm case (retailing at $1,149 and $1,199,), while the Double Tour piece features a strap that wraps twice around the wrist and is only available with a 38 mm case with a price of $1,299. Both watches are offered with bands in a variety of colours, including Anémone, which is a brand-new shade of vibrant purple that will appeal to the female audience of tech fans.

The Ulysse Nardin Classico Schooner America watch02

The Ulysse Nardin Classico Schooner America watch

The Ulysse Nardin Classico Schooner America timepiece as launched to commemorate the 19th-century yacht famous for sailing’s most prestigious regatta, the America’s Cup. It is a nod to the Swiss watchmaker’s maritime legacy—one the brand is known for through its collaboration with Sweden’s Artemis Racing team in its bid to win the competition’s 35th running in 2017.

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The new model is set within a case of 18-karat white or rose gold with the dial depicting the gaff schooner America sailing to glory for the New York Yacht Club in 1851. After the inaugural competition, both the trophy and the race itself were subsequently renamed after the victorious vessel. In the background talented craftsmen have painted England’s Isle of Wight—the circumnavigation of which composed the original course. The entire nautical composition is presented in enamel cloisonné (produced in-house by the manufacturer’s own artisans at Donzé Cadrans) and is the result of 26 meticulous specific processes along with 50 hours of craftsmanship.

Only 30 examples of the automatic watch will be made and each will have a 42-hour power reserve. Price for the limited edition timepieces is $39,800 each.  Sailing enthusiasts are sure to be mesmerized by the intricate detailing and exquisite workmanship of the Ulysse Nardin Classico Schooner America as it makes a statement of both a casual, free-loving lifestyle and luxurious class that few can afford.

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In the world of marine chronometers, the partnership between the Swiss watchmaker and the Artemis Racing Team has produced piece of bespoke quality and value – a worth-while addition to the modern plethora of modern watches with a nod to a historic event.

The Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde SW Lady

The Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde SW Lady

Femininity and contemporary minimalism are the centre points for the new Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde SW Lady. The first women’s watch from the renowned Swiss manufacture’s Grande Seconde SW series is a more sport-oriented version of the line based on Pierre Jaquet Droz’s pocket watch from the distant 1784. The timepiece boasts a stainless-steel case and is encrusted with 40 diamonds. The face conveys a sense of the timeless class that is the hallmark of the horologic house’s famed figure-eight motif. Two subdials are set against white mother-of-pearl and the dial’s rings and plates are made of 18-karat white gold.

Time is measured out with roman numeral as the denoted minute and hour indices are concentrically located on top of a larger sweep of seconds that is itself marked in arabic numerals—and are all arced over by blued-steel hands. Beneath the refined and elegant exterior is nestled a self-winding manual movement that provides the model with a 68-hour power reserve.

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An 18-karat white-gold oscillating weight balances out the mechanism and the intricate architecture is accented with Côtes de Genève patterning for an ornate finish. This detail is put ingeniously on display through a sapphire-crystal caseback. The price of the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde SW Lady is available upon request and it comes in four distinctive colour variations – pink, white, blue and black. The straps are made of the finest quality leather and complement the model-of-pearl dial to subtly accentuate the clean, austere design of the composition. The face of the model is crowned with rubber cast and the signature self-winding mechanical movement is finished with ruthenium treatment.

 

Richard Mille's new Tourbillon watch

Richard Mille’s new Tourbillon watch

Richard Mille has a proud history of manufacturing expensive watches that border the world of haute couture and architectural minimalism with their striking skeleton cases. The newly-introduced line of sapphire tourbillion pieces does an amazing job at continuing the Maison’s rich heritage, being a true representation of a modern gentleman’s sense of edgy style and sophisticated elegance.

The RM 56-02 with the striking price tag of $2,020,000 boasts a complex case design and exceptionally intricate movement. Both are forged out of pure sapphire and suspended in air by a signature system of pulleys that is highly revered in the world of haute horology. The model employs the same fundamental design of the infamous Nadal watch known as the RM 27-01. It was that particular piece that marked the debut of the trademarked technology that suspended the watches’ interior mechanics transparently mid-air, giving the whole composition the appearance of weightlessness. The difference with the RM 56-02 is the base-plate made of titanium and the sapphire case.

Richard Mille's new Tourbillon watch

The interior of the watch is just as spectacular as the exterior with suspension cable braided to a remarkable .35mm thickness (or the width of a fishing line), which is controlled by the aforementioned pulleys posted to four points along the movement as well as additional posts along the side of the case. A ratchet is positioned at 9 o’clock to allow the wearer to adjust the tension on the cables, and an arrow at 12 o’clock registers how tight the cords are.

The three-part case is constructed entirely of sapphire crystal, which is extremely hard and scratch resistant. However, the tough material presents some manufacturing difficulties, which make the RM 56-02 all the more valuable. Its case has to be milled and ground from solid pieces of sapphire as any mistake will result in the piece cracking and a new one will have to be started from square one. It takes an average of 40 days of around-the-clock machining to create a single RM 56-02 case – or 960 hours in total. The sapphire bridges take an additional 400 hours, meaning a total of 1500 hours of fine workmanship go into a single watch.

HYT H1 Full Gold

HYT H1 Full Gold

HYT watches are known for being more than just another timepiece in the world of haute couture and fine watch-making. The brand’s tagline “Hydro Mechanical Horologists” perfectly epitomizes the brilliant combination of exquisite workmanship and modern edge one can expect from the models.

The H1 is the watch that started it all. Its design features a sub-dial at 12 o’clock with a singular hand for indication of the minutes. An hour hand is absent and instead replaced by a circular tube that runs inside the dial’s circumference. Coloured and clear liquids with controlled levels are placed inside the tube as well as an expansion of two piston-driven bellows at 6 o’clock. These liquids mark the change of hours, simultaneously giving way to it. Twice a day at six o’clock, they undergo a retrograde motion and return to the starting position, marking the beginning of a new cycle all over again.

HYT H1 Full Gold

Such a display system is utterly fascinating both in design and execution. The fluid system is governed through autonomous timekeeping, while still allowing manipulation when the crown is operated to set the time. The exhausting research required to develop the specific nuances and viscosities of the liquids involves a great deal of fine-tuning. To top everything off- the entire system is resistant against vibration and temperature fluctuation.

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The new H1 Full Gold boasts a case made entirely in pink gold, which is a first for the line. This 50-piece limited edition will be retiled for prices starting at $51,750. The beautiful detailing includes galvanic coating in the same hue on the minute sub-dial, small seconds’ wheel, power reserve indicator, and the hour ring for perfect uniformity. The usual fluorescent liquids for the hours have been substituted for opaque black. This makes possible for the Super-LumiNova coating underneath the liquid capillary (i.e. glass tube) to emit green light in the dark that is another first for the brand. The final result is a timepiece that exudes seriousness and solemnity for the modern gentleman.

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