Watch & Jewellery
'CAUSE STEEL IS THE NEW GOLD: A. Lange & Söhne's Odysseus
Text by Kee | Photos courtesy of A. Lange & Söhne
The 'Odysseus' is A. Lange & Söhne's first full-time committment in making steel wristwatches
This steel wristwatch retails for US$28,800
The 'Odysseus' features a multi-layered dial

Real watch snobs will tell you that there are only a handful of brands around that can be mentioned in the same breath as a Patek Philippe. One of them is A. Lange & Söhne, a Saxon watchmaker who has been perfecting the craft since 1845 although the company only rebooted its business 30 years ago. But that has not affected what it can bring onto the table with a pace and consistency of a seasoned pro. Newness, however, is not something that the Swiss-owned German label has been overly comfortable with, preferring to stick to what it knows best and making fine tweaks and functional additions rather than playing up to hype. But not today. We’re nearing 2020 and it has finally made a commitment to fill a gap in its regular menu in the form of a steel wristwatch. Why is this such a big deal? For starters this is a new pillar for the Saxon watchmaker – its sixth – and prior to this it has only been concentrating on precious materials and periodically flirting with steel as an ala carte option. But don’t start spewing hate on its Greek superhero name Odysseus or that A. Lange & Söhne is going out of character. Those who are familiar with the brand will be drawn to all the winning visuals that this watchmaker has been known for: the beautiful finishing of the case and movement, a multi-layered dial, and a pair of legible windows indicating the day and date in this case. But knowing A. Lange & Söhne, this isn’t the full picture when it is demanding almost 30 grand a pop for an Odysseus. There are two integrated switches on the side of a case – one positioned above the crown and the other below it – that is unusual for a non-chronograph wristwatch. But get this, by just activating them with each push you can control the day and date manually, and most importantly, easily – a tough job made easy by a new in-house self-winding movement. This is applicable for months that are less than 31 days or if you’re in an entirely different timezone. And if you were wondering why it took so long for it to make its own integrated bracelet, this one is capable of giving your wrist some breathing space on days when you need it. Simply by pushing the buckle, you can freely adjust the bracelet by up to 7mm. Yes, this was worth the wait.

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