The Hublot Spirit of Big Bang West Coast Ceramic Black and White appears at first glance very much like something produced by Richard Mille, with the skeletonized dial and tonneau-shaped case. This is a chronograph watch, though such is not immediately apparent due to the discreet black pushers and a lot of detail about the dial that originally can distract the eye in the chronograph’s registers. Featured at 3 o’clock is the 30-minute counter, followed closely by a 12-hour counter at 6 o’clock, also operating minutes at 9 o’clock, which can be signed with Hush’s name. An exposed date ring runs the periphery of the dial, framed by a perforated white edge at 4:30. The central second hand features a Hublot-logo counterweight plus black-plated tip using a slender strip of white luminescent material, which also includes on the chronograph register hand and hands markers.The case of this Hublot Spirit of Big Bang West Coast Ceramic Black and White is made from micro-blasted black porcelain, which should provide the watch with good scratch resistance. Maintaining the monochromatic theme is really a contrasting white ceramic bezel, affixed to the case with six titanium screws using a shiny black PVD coating. The case measures 42mm in diameter and is 14.10mm thick, and though Hublot haven’t given the situation length, I expect this opinion will wear quite significant. The case can also be water-resistant to 10 ATM (approximately 100m) which combined with the tough ceramic must make this a competent sports opinion. Note, however, that although ceramic is extremely hard, it’s also brittle, which is a concern for a wristwatch that stands 14.10mm tall and may thus be prone to knocking against things.
Having put denim and embroidery on the dials of its watches, Hublot has now turned to French shoemaker Berluti for its trademark Venezia leather, including the signature Berluti Scritto hide. Tanned to give it a variegated finish resembling the patina of age, Berluti’s leathers synonymous with the brand.
The Hublot and Berluti collaboration is available in two guises, both limited edition. The more affordable is the Classic Fusion Berluti All Black, a 500-piece limited edition in black ceramic and titanium with the dial and strap in nero grigio Venezia leather that’s a striking grey-black. The strap features the “Gaspard” slash, a fold in the leather secured by a single stitch. This is priced at SFR13,900 or S$23,400 in Singapore.
The Classic Fusion Berluti Scritto combines 18k King Gold, a rose gold alloy, with Venezia Scritto leather. Laser engraved with calligraphy, Scritto leather is Berluti’s most recognisable material, especially in the rich golden brown tobacco bis colour found here. This is limited to 250 pieces, with a price of SFr27,900 or S$46,800.
Both Classic Fusion Berluti watches are 41 mm in diameter, and come packaged in a large box covered in the same Berluti leather as the dial and strap. Inside is a Berluti leather watch pouch, along with various implements for polishing the leather, including wax and brushes.