OMEGA’s Brand Ambassador, Simon Yam, and celebrity model Coco Chiang at the Hong Kong launch of the Seamaster Planet Ocean.
From the gentle azure waters of Capri, Italy, where OMEGA first introduced the world to its stunning new range of diver’s timepieces, the Seamaster Planet Ocean collection has traversed entire oceans, so to speak, to resurface on another, more urbane island – Hong Kong.
On September 20, 2011, the Hong Kong press, friends of the brand and the local horological community gathered at the plush, sun-dappled Aberdeen Marina Club to witness the launch of OMEGA’s Seamaster Planet Ocean collection.
On hand at the product unveiling was Jean-Claude Monachon, Vice President and Head of Product Development of OMEGA, who highlighted two distinctive characteristics of the collection: the Co-Axial calibre 9300/9301 movement and the flashing blue ceramic bezel, wrought from a cutting-edge amalgamation of ceramic, titanium and Liquidmetal®.
AN OCEANOGRAPHIC AFFINITY
Hewing closely to the brand’s storied association with the nautical world, the new mechanical timepieces are, without exception, built to withstand the water pressure and multiple other challenges that come with being attached to a true-blue diver’s wrist.
Outstanding features include of course the SuperLumiNova coating on the hands for superior legibility; the patented Co-Axial escapement unique to OMEGA; and the Si 14 silicon balance springs for increased reliability, stability and overall technical performance. In fact, all of the new models are so thoroughly sea- and land-worthy that OMEGA is proud to offer a full four-year warranty.
Commenting on the technical triumph of debuting the first in-house chronograph movement via the Seamaster Planet Ocean collection, Monachon said: “Co-Axial calibre 9300/9301 is the latest breakthrough since OMEGA inaugurated its revolutionary Co-Axial movement in 1999, and also the first in-house chronograph movement from our Co-Axial calibre family.”
“We have plans to equip all of our mechanical watches with Co-Axial movements in the near future, to meet the markets’ escalating demand for premium quality timepieces.”
TAKING THE PLUNGE
Presentation aside, Monachon, Jimmy Mak, Vice President of OMEGA Hong Kong and Taiwan, and guests were invited to the pool for an underwater treasure hunt, a thrilling stunt that simultaneously showcased the water-resistant properties of the new timepieces, which are good for up to a depth of 600 meters.
The bounty hunter for the day was none other than Simon Yam, OMEGA’s brand ambassador, who was accompanied by professional divers – and a winsome “mermaid” played by celebrity model Vita C., a lovely manifestation of the amphibious nature of the watches. Cheered on by spectators, Yam, decked out in scuba gear, dove headfirst into the pool, stayed under a heartstopping few minutes…and emerged triumphant, Seamaster Planet Ocean Chronograph in hand.
PROJECT BLUE HOPE
Still dripping wet and slick from the poolside presentation, Simon Yam said on his participation with the eco-conscious brand, as well as his personal commitment to ocean conservation. In an earnest and poignant speech, Simon said: “The nature is very close to my heart. I recently bought a small island in Singapore, where the azure seawater and colorful coral are just breathtaking.”
OMEGA, on its part, has always been passionately involved in the drive toward promoting awareness of the fragility of our seas. In conjunction with the launch of the Seamaster Planet Ocean collection, OMEGA has announced a collaboration with Yann Arthus-Bertrand, environmental activist, photographer and filmmaker, to produce and direct a film about the Earth’s oceans, serving to remind viewers of these natural beauties that cover two-thirds of the planet’s surface and to raise awareness of ocean conservation. The brand has also partnered with GoodPlanet, an organization founded by Arthus-Bertrand dedicated to the protection of ocean resources.
The day’s event was fittingly concluded by a show by Simon, Coco Chiang and celebrity models Ana R, Jocelyn Luko and Alice B, who strode down the open-air runway with the OMEGA timepieces, demonstrating the remarkable synthesis of high watchmaking technology and eye-catching aesthetics in the new collection.
Pulling out all the stops, the day’s launch segued into evening with OMEGA hosting a Seamaster Planet Ocean dinner, where celebs and friends of the brand were treated to a sumptuous dinner, accompanied by an evocative dance performance capped off with an encore presentation of the exquisite mechanical timepieces.