On July 31, 1944, the poet and pilot Antoine de Saint-Exupéry took off in an unarmed Lockheed P-38 Lightning on a reconnaissance mission from an airbase on Corsica. The last radar echo of his aircraft was reported at 8:30 over the Mediterranean, near the French coasts, and the author of Le Petit Prince is believed to have died at that time.
In May 2000, Luc Vanrell, a professional diver, found the partial remains of a Lockheed P-38 Lightning spread over thousands of square metres of the seabed off the coast of Marseille. The discovery galvanized the country, which for decades had conducted searches for his aircraft and speculated on Saint-Exupéry’s fate. Eventually, the remnants of the aircraft were recovered in October 2003.
Today, the Aquatimer Automatic Edition “35 years Ocean 2000” accompanies Luc Vanrell for a dive of over forty metres, following in the footsteps of Saint-Exupéry and his Lightning P38.
The very first Iwc Watch 1963 Replica watch to feature an electronic display of this time was really made in the late 19th century. The Pallweber platform is regarded as the very first digital pocket watch movement. The brand’s first electronic pocket watch, based on IWC’s archives, was the Savonnette pocket watch Pallweber of 1886. The brand new IWC Tribute to Pallweber Edition “150 Years” is a fairly faithful recreation of the exact same pocket watch.Of course, it’s a wristwatch, as it comes at a round 45mm wide 18k red gold situation. A distinctive trait of this case is its own cable lugs, which can be something which you don’t find that often on contemporary watches. It also gives the watch a very vintage feel and look. Also noteworthy is the massive 18k red gold onion crown. Water resistance is rated at 30m and the watch includes a black alligator strap made by longtime IWC partner Santoni.The expansive white lacquered dial is superbly minimalist. At 12 o’clock, you have an aperture for the digital display of those hours, which can be clearly labeled in reference to the pocket watch’s layout. Below it and closer to the middle of the dial is just another aperture for the digital display of the moments, again clearly tagged. In the end, at 6 o’clock you have a sub-dial that reveals the running moments, which helps the design’s equilibrium while supplying some motion on the otherwise stark face. There’s nothing superfluous about the dial and that I feel the choice of fonts and both black rings that hold the various displays together produce a very Art Deco vibe.
IWC Schaffhausen has worked closely with Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s descendants since 2005 and also has a solid commitment to the Fondation Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.