Christiaan van der Klaauw (CvdK) is a brand known for its astronomical complications. Its watches feature miniature planetaria, small three-dimensional versions of the Moon, and entire star systems on the dials. More often than not, the celestial bodies on CvdK’s watches are part of an ingenious complication. That’s still the case on this new limited-edition stAriadne developed in collaboration with Ace Jewelers. This time, however, a few more stars have been added to the dial to give it a little something extra. And that’s exactly the exciting touch you’d expect from two true watch enthusiasts like Pim Koeslag and Alon Ben Joseph.

Pim, CEO and master watchmaker of Christiaan van der Klaauw, and Alon, CEO of Ace Jewelers, have already known each other for a long time. And you’ll find this out if you meet them, but both are absolutely crazy about watches. Ask either of them a single watch-related question, and you’ll have difficulty making them stop talking about their shared passion. The two had already collaborated on watches when Pim was still at Frederique Constant. However, since he moved to Christiaan van der Klaauw in 2022, it was only a matter of time before the next collaboration would come out. That’s especially because Ace Jewelers became an authorized dealer for CvdK last year. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the new stAriadne by Christiaan van der Klaauw and Ace Jewelers.

Ace Jewelers × Christiaan Van Der Klaauw stAriadne

The Ace Jewelers × Christiaan van der Klaauw stAriadne

The stAriadne is derived from CvdK’s Ariadne. This is a current model in the Dutch brand’s catalog, featuring a rather classical dial and case design. The watch boasts a triple calendar, a (lumed) moonphase display, a cam-lever chronograph, the 12-hour time, and a 24-hour indicator. In the standard configuration, the edges of the dial and sub-dials are silver, and you can choose between a black, blue, or silvery-white main dial color. Last year, two beautiful limited turquoise and salmon-pink editions came out in collaboration with Reijersen Juweliers.

The stAriadne has a 40mm stainless steel case, which is 14.6mm thick and spans 50.4mm from lug to lug. It’s powered by the CVDK7758 caliber, which uses a Valjoux 7751 automatic chronograph movement as a base. That’s why the 30-minute and 12-hour counters are at 12 and 6 o’clock, respectively. At 9 o’clock, you’ll find the running seconds, and to balance the dial out, there’s a fourth sub-dial at 3 o’clock. This one simply contains Christiaan van der Klaauw’s name and static logo, a sun with 12 claws.

Ace Jewelers × Christiaan Van Der Klaauw stAriadne dial close-up

But, as I already mentioned, this watch isn’t just a chronograph. Inside the 30-minute counter, you’ll also find windows for the day and the month. When you order the watch, you can choose between discs in Dutch or English. Within the running seconds sub-dial, you’ll also find the 24-hour indicator. A moonphase complication is integrated into the 12-hour counter, and finally, one of the four central hands points to the date on the edge of the dial.

An Amsterdam-themed Ariadne

As with many of Ace Jewelers’ limited editions, the colors of the Amsterdam coat of arms are used as an inspiration for the design of the stAriadne. The date track around the dial’s perimeter is black, just like the chapter rings on the sub-dials. In addition, the moonphase, day, and month discs are all executed in black. The press release states that the rest of the dial has a fog-gray color. In real life, though, it looks more like a cream or beige tone to me. In any case, it gives the dial a somewhat panda-like look, and I like the high-contrast layout a lot. The Breguet-style hour and minute hands are executed in black, while the date hand is polished and has a red crescent-shaped tip. This matches well with the fiery red central chronograph hand that turns proudly above all of the other hands and indicators.

Ace Jewelers × Christiaan Van Der Klaauw stAriadne dial close-up

Usually, the Ariadne comes with Arabic numerals for all of the hours that aren’t occupied by sub-dials. But on this Ace Jewelers limited edition, high-polished stars have replaced those numerals. They all point outward, and their faceted design gives off some playful reflections when doing wrist rolls. It’s a very nice and relevant decoration for a watch from a brand like Christiaan van der Klaauw. It’s also the kind of decoration that lies a little outside of CvdK’s comfort zone, I feel. The brand’s watches are often mainly elegant and classic, but the stars add a little bit of pizzazz to the Ariadne. I’m sure Alon had something to do with that.

Ace Jewelers × Christiaan Van Der Klaauw stAriadne pocket shot

On the wrist

I kind of like how the stAriadne sits on top of my 17cm wrist. Because of its larger size, it’s not a watch that I’d quickly choose to wear or buy. As it turns out, though, it isn’t that bad, especially for a watch with this many complications. Yes, the rounded case is quite thick, and the bar-like lugs, though curved, don’t wrap around my wrist much. However, those things, together with the nicely designed dial, also give it a lot of character. I feel that it could even use a little more character by increasing the size of the onion crown and the two pushers alongside it — a little bit à la Chronoswiss.

I haven’t worn this watch in public, but I’m sure that people would say something about it if they saw it on my wrist. It has a ton of wrist presence, which the brightly lumed moon at 6 o’clock only emphasizes further. And if you find that people aren’t impressed by all those complications, then make sure to show them the back of the watch as well. There, you get to take a look at the movement with its “sunclaw” rotor, which master guillocheur Jochen Benzinger engraved. He will also personally sign the rotor with the unique number you select from the 50 pieces of the limited-edition stAriadne.

Now available for pre-order

The Christiaan van der Klaauw × Ace Jewelers stAriadne is now available for pre-order for a price of €9,450 (including 21% VAT). Production will start in the second quarter of this year, and the watches will take five months to complete. The stAriadne comes on a matching black alligator leather strap with a folding clasp that features another sunclaw. Check out the Ace Jewelers website for more information on this limited edition.

Also, don’t forget to let me know what you think of this triple-calendar chronograph with a moonphase display and a high-contrast dial in the comments below.

Watch specifications

Fog gray with grainy texture, black sub-dial rings, and high-polished and faceted star-shaped indices
Case Material
Stainless steel
Case Dimensions
40mm (diameter) × 50.4mm (lug-to-lug) × 14.6mm (thickness)
Domed sapphire
Case Back
Stainless steel and sapphire
CDVK7758 (Valjoux 7751 base): automatic and hand winding, 28,800vph frequency, 48-hour power reserve, 25 jewels
Water Resistance
Black alligator (20mm width) with a stainless steel folding clasp
Time: (hours, minutes, small seconds, 24-hour indicator), triple calendar (day, date, month), moonphase display, chronograph (12-hour and 30-minute counters, central seconds)
€9,450 (including 21% VAT)
Three years
Special Note(s)
Limited edition of 50 pieces