Created in 1973, the Riviera watch returns this year to revive the spirit of an inspiring watchmaking era. A Baume & Mercier icon, the Riviera is now unveiled in three chronograph versions, each with a diameter of 43 mm and its own distinctive character. These sporty and elegant watches embody the Brand’s know-how in design, form and watchmaking expertise. They also tell a wonderful story, the story of Baume & Mercier chronographs: the ultimate complication that blends sporty style with chic elegance.
Almost fifty years on and the Riviera still conveys the values of joy and carefree living that were synonymous with the free-spirited seventies. This year, the watch is being given a renaissance and has been redesigned following Baume & Mercier’s Swiss know-how and integrating contemporary style codes. The fifth generation of the Riviera is not about a revival but a renewal.
The new collection was presented at Watches & Wonders 2021 with automatic 42-mm models, while top-of-the-range Baumatic versions in the same size were the standout stars of the collection. The Riviera also makes an appearance on women’s wrists in quartz versions (36 mm) asserting an ever more impactful style in perfect correlation with the rich history of Baume & Mercier. These pieces mark a shift in continuity for Baume & Mercier, leaving an impression on the living legacy of a Brand on the move. They echo the characteristics of their ancestors, but are writing their own chapter in the story. Integrating both its avant-garde seventies design and the sporty classicism of watchmaking today, the Riviera’s comeback in this chronograph version is more than meets the eye.
Starting in the 90s, the first Riviera chronographs brought a new edge to the collection and reflected the new codes and trends of each passing year. The story continues this year with three variations of the brand new Riviera chronograph, whose diameter measures 43 mm. These three watches with assertive characters fit perfectly with this tradition. Staying true to the design of the original pieces, the Riviera automatic chronographs echo the legendary watch: a 12-sided bezel, a dial with a unique wave-shaped decoration symbolising the meeting between a mountain and the ocean, and interchangeable straps – using the Fast Strap system developed by the Brand – in steel or rubber. The shape and libertarian spirit of the 1973 model remain, but are represented in a new, contemporary light.
Two versions are available, with a polished and satin-brushed steel case. The first is adorned with a blue sun satin-finished dial and a matching blue rubber strap. The second has a black sun satin-finished dial and an integrated steel bracelet. The third design completely black: a black case in microblasted ADLC-steel, a black sun satin-finished dial and a black rubber strap. Robust and reliable, Riviera chronographs carry a tried and tested “Swiss made” automatic movement (Valjoux 7750) with a 48-hour power reserve and runs at 28,800 vph, or 4 Hertz. Each model features a double day-date window at three o’clock, a small second hand at 9 o’clock and two sub-dials for chronograph functions: a minute counter at 12 o’clock and an hour counter at 6 o’clock.
Asserting its design expertise once more, Baume & Mercier has paid special attention to how the bracelet (steel or rubber) fits onto the case for all the pieces in the Riviera collection that was unveiled this year. The new chronographs are no exceptions to the rule. The case/bracelet integration has been thoughtfully designed by Baume & Mercier watchmakers to provide the Riviera with beautifully balanced proportions as well as increased comfort for its wearer. The three new chronograph models are therefore fitted with interchangeable straps that have a triple folding buckle and a safety clasp. They also feature the ingenious “Fast Strap” interchangeability system developed by Baume & Mercier, so the flexible or steel bracelet can be changed in just a few seconds.
Riviera chronographs embody the values that underscore the Brand’s style, as it continues to express its know-how in design, form and watchmaking expertise. 2021 will definitely be the year of the Riviera!
As ever at the cutting edge of innovation and always striving to satisfy the expectations of its customers, Baume & Mercier is also launching an innovative concept for testing its watches from the Riviera collection directly on its website, without going through a social media interface, downloading an application, or having to place a marker on the customer’s wrist. This advanced technology, known as “Virtual Wristview”, embodies the Brand’s spirit of innovation. With the camera on your mobile phone, you can use augmented reality to see how the different models in the Riviera collection presented on the Baume & Mercier website would look on your wrist. All you have to do is go to the page that displays the watch you wish to “try on”, click on a button to open the camera, place your wrist behind your phone… and the Riviera model of your dreams will appear on your wrist. The unique process works from a web browser, so it is compatible with any smartphone operating system. The tailor-made remote service presents your chosen watch from every angle. It can be used at home or elsewhere, while you are alone or surrounded by people whose opinions you value. Trying on a watch is simple, user-friendly, comfortable and enjoyable. A world first!
About Baume & Mercier:
Founded in 1830 at the heart of Swiss Jura, the Baume & Mercier watch manufacture enjoys international renown. From its workshops at the heart of Swiss Jura to its headquarters based in Geneva, the Brand offers its clients the very finest timepieces. Borne by a complementary balance between an artistic approach to shape and watchmaking innovation in the service of the client, the Baume & Mercier House continues to mark the history of watchmaking by passing down the design and watchmaking expertise that is the Brand’s legacy. This savoir-faire perfectly corresponds with the spirit of cooperation between the Brand’s founders William Baume & Paul Mercier: where classicism meets creativity, tradition meets modernity, and elegance meets character… In a more contemporary way than ever.
In 2021, Baume & Mercier unveils new, exacting models that demonstrate the Brand’s change of direction as it sets its sights on new horizons. Today, more than ever before, Baume & Mercier is
designing a collective, collaborative, responsible watchmaking approach shaped by design and creativity in order to lay the ground for cooperation and the sharing of experiences. Still in step with the times, the brand is proud of this dynamic energy and of its attentiveness to social progress.