These bold, boisterous and colourful wrist companions are made for sunny shindigs.
One can just tell from Franck Muller’s capricious creations that the independent Swiss watchmaking house really enjoys—pardon the pun—a good time. Whether toying with traditional hour and minute displays, as it does with the Crazy Hours, or updating a centuries-old complication for glamourous nights out, as demonstrated by the neon-hued Grand Central Tourbillon Flash CX, Franck Muller makes fine watchmaking fun.
The new Vanguard Beach collection expresses this horological ethos perfectly. Clad in fiery red, ocean blue, and summer green, this eye-catching trio will dominate your wrist and power up your outfit with unbridled ostentation.
A sporty collection in Franck Muller’s varied repertoire, the Vanguard was conceived with young watch enthusiasts in mind. Launched in 2014, the Vanguard ranges channel Franck Muller’s design and technical hallmarks, and transposes them into unapologetically dynamic and showy wrist accoutrements.
The Vanguard’s distinctive case, for instance, is a commanding feature. Inspired by Franck Muller’s iconic Cintrée Curvex silhouette, the Vanguard adopts a similar style, which seeks to accentuate the tonneau shape’s curvature on all sides so as to endow the watch with a sleek and sensuous look. On the Vanguard collection, however, the case has been reinterpreted for a heftier and more dynamic disposition, complemented by a lug-less construction that makes the watches comfortable to wear.
The exuberant Vanguard Beach models join a stellar line-up that spans gorgeous time-only automatic models to mechanically complex offerings like the Vanguard Gravity, which features a tourbillon cage with an innovative elliptical structure. While decidedly less complex—they feature only time and date displays—the youngest members of the Vanguard family bring unique attributes to the table.
The watches’ bright and bold colours are an obvious draw. Screaming monochromatic chic, the shades of blue, red and green are rich, striking and incredibly uniform, covering the case, strap, dial as well as the appliques on the skeletonised hands. The gorgeous tone-on-tone look is punctuated by the white hour markers and outer dial flange, which add contrast and enhance readability.
If you find yourself wondering about the textured appearance on the watch case, well, good on you: you share Franck Muller’s eye for detail. Eschewing a regular metal case, Franck Muller has opted to go with glass fibre composite for the Vanguard Beach.
Making the case with a material more commonly associated with sporting products is an arduous process. It starts with melting glass at 1,500°C and then stretching the molten material into ultra-fine filaments. The melted filaments are then cooled and rolled into sheets at 700°C. Following which, the sheets are dyed in colour baths, before being individually layered and compressed into blocks. These blocks are then machined into the lovely tonneau cases that we see on the Vanguard Beach.
While there are obvious advantages of the Vanguard Beach’s glass composite case—primarily its lightweight yet robust quality, which makes it really easy to wear—the material’s unique appearance also lends itself well to the collection’s beach-themed inspiration. Depending on your preferred colour, the patterns can evoke waves on an ocean or a blazing sunset.
As fashion-forward as these watches are, the Vanguard Beach are high-performance timekeepers. The watches are driven by a robust automatic movement with 42 hours of power reserve, complementing the technical glass composite construction on the outside with serious mechanical prowess on the inside. This is so that when you are out in the sun doing your thing, you are assured of a trusty wrist companion that performs as well as it looks.