For many of us, one look at Louis Vuitton’s Escale Worldtime and the immediate sense that this is a happy watch emerges.
After all, there are more than 30 colours applied on the dial. To be a little more precise, there are 38 colours, as Fernando Mara of Le Man Cadrans (the dial making company owned by Louis Vuitton) tells us.
What is noteworthy is that this colourful dial is in fact inspired by the famous Louis Vuitton trunks used by travellers. The clients of Louis Vuitton trunks in the old days had the option of customizing their trunks with their preferred colours, initials, family coat-of-arms or even hand-painted geometric pictograms.
“Colours are about happiness,” says Hamdi Chatti, vice president, Fine Jewelry and Watches, Louis Vuitton. “When you travel in style, you’re happy.”
Little wonder why this watch is named the Escale Worldtime. The French word escale means “to stop over at” or can be taken to be “a port of call” when translated to English.
Now probably the key question from those unacquainted with this worldtime watch is: how can it tell the time?
Some quick basic understanding of this watch made by La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton Manufacture is required:
The dial comprises three rotating discs: firstly, the outermost one taking two rows with the various colours and initials of the 24 cities; secondly, the half-black, half-white disc numbered from 1 to 24 that allows one to immediately read-off whether it is day or night; and thirdly, the smallest disc that tells the minutes.
To read the time, focus on the tip of the black triangle where the vertical yellow arrow line is. Use this yellow arrow to align the city and read off the hours and minutes and check if it is day or night with the half-black, half-white 24-hour revolving disc and finally the smallest disc for displaying the minutes.
The beauty of the watch lies in the innovative rotating mechanism for the worldtime display and the various colours on the dial.
Even more amazing is the minimum tolerance between the dial and the sapphire crystal, which according to Michel Navas (of La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton Manufacture), the gentleman behind the technical movement of this watch, is a mere 0.3mm.
What’s more, the world time city discs, time-setting and winding are all controlled by the crown. “The more complicated the watch is, the simpler it should be [to use]. That is our philosophy,” says the highly talented Navas.
Even if one were colour-blind, at least the vertical arrow above the black triangle can still be the reference. Time can still be told rather comfortably and happiness most definitely enjoyed.
Now if you are happy with your “stop-over” or escale here, so are we!