IWC adds new member to Portofino collection – Portofino Hand-Wound Big Date

Named after the picturesque Italian fishing village, the Portofino Collection by IWC has been featuring eye-catching watches that combine extravagance, and at the same time simple elegance – and for more than 25 years. It’s no different when it comes to the latest addition of the collection, the Portofino Hand-Wound Big Date. The new watch is offered in two versions, with different case materials, dials, as well as the straps. This gives them two distinct characters, who still have a lot in common when it comes to the mechanics.

Now, let’s focus on the case. Two options are available: 18 carat white gold or 18 carat red gold. Both measure 43 mm in diameter, and feature a sapphire crystal case-back through which the movement can be seen. The water resistance is 3 bar.

When Extravagance met Elegance

Different cases are paired with different dials – first, we have the slate-colored dial contrasting the white gold case. This version of the dial is complemented with rhodium-plated hands and indices, which altogether works very well, aesthetics-wise. But what’s most noticeable here are certainly the various indicators: at 12 o’clock position, we can see the feature that earned the watch its name, the large date window, which is composed of two synchronized discs. Next, at 9 o’clock, we can notice the power reserve indicator, which shows how many of the 8 days of power reserve is left. Finally, at the bottom of the dial is the small seconds counter.

On the other hand, there’s the more classic silver-plated dial, which is paired with the red gold case. Unlike its slate-colored counterpart, here we have gold-plated hands and indices, which nicely match the case. Other than that, there isn’t much difference between the two versions of the dial. The layout is the same, including the Big Date, power reserve indicator, and the small seconds sub-dial. Like the slate dial, the silvered dial is covered with a sapphire glass with arched edge, and it features antireflective coating on both sides.

A look at the back

For the movement, IWC used their in-house caliber 59230, with 30 jewels. One of the most important, as well as most impressive features here is the power reserve, which is 192 hours (8 days). This is a hand-wound movement, beating at 28,800 vibrations per hour. The movement can be seen from the back of the watch (or at least good portion of it), along with some neat finishing. One more interesting thing about the movement is the indexless balance, which has 4 golden weight screws on the balance rim.

Finally, we have the straps. The white gold model is complemented with a black leather strap, while the red gold watch features the same material, but in dark brown. Both are made by Italian shoe manufacturer Santoni, which makes leather straps exclusively for IWC. The distinct look of the straps is achieved by a special process which gives the material the patina and unique color, making it look as if they have already been used for a while. Completing these two, we have pin buckles, in either white or red gold, matching the respective case. The new Portofino Hand-Wound Big Date is available all across the world, from IWC boutiques.

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