Introducing: The Czapek Quai Des Berges 40.5mm N°17 Double Soleil In Deep Blue And Tuxedo Black
With the Antractique, Czapek has something of a hit watch on its hands that draws a ton of attention. Therefore, you would be forgiven if you have lost sight of the brand’s more traditional offerings. Allow me to put them front and center in your working memory once more. Here we have a brand-new entry to the Quai des Bergues line — or, rather, two new entries.
Let’s have a closer look at the new Czapek Quai des Bergues models in a new size and fitted with new black or blue dials.
Czapek Quai des Bergues 40.5mm N°17 Double Soleil
Czapek already has an extensive collection of Quai des Bergues watches in its catalog. Until now, they all measured either 42.5mm or 38.5mm across. There is a lot to choose from too. You can opt for steel, titanium, white gold, rose gold, or platinum. There are guilloché dials, Grand Feu enamel dials, and opaline silver dials. You can go for one with classical fleur-de-lis hands or the more modern arrow hands. Lastly, there are Roman numerals or stick indices to choose from.
Apparently, however, Czapek customers were missing something within that plethora of options. With a large and a smallish option, there was a demand for a Goldilocks size in between, so Czapek obliged with a new 40.5mm case size.
As always, such interventions are more complicated than expected. Therefore, Czapek refined the recesses in the case flanks to better accommodate the Calibre SXH1 inside. Judging by the images, I would say the bezel is now a tad thinner too. The latter significantly adds to the elegance of the case.
Two suns rising over the Quai des Bergues
One of many things I love about Czapek is its openness about where parts are sourced. The brand doesn’t go along with the concocted in-house narrative of most modern brands. Instead, Czapek proudly follows the methods that were (and still are, except secretly) common in watchmaking for centuries — namely, developing parts in cooperation with and sourcing them from specialist manufacturers.
In this respect, Czapek makes the dials for the Quai des Bergues watches with the specialist Swiss dial maker Metalem. The company already developed the earlier “Ricochet” guilloché pattern found on earlier Quai des Bergues models. This time, however, Czapek and Metalem went for a brand-new pattern with a more modern look.
Czapek refers to the new guilloché work as a “Double Soleil.” Apparently, it is inspired by the parhelion phenomenon in which two luminous spots emerge alongside the sun. Inspiration aside, the pattern completely changes the vibe of the watch. Its straight lines make it look much more contemporary, which I really like. You can have your pick of a Tuxedo Black or Deep Blue version.
Inside the Quai des Bergues 40.5mm N°17: Calibre SXH1
Czapek updated its SXH1 movement last year. Functionally, it was left as is, but it received some neat aesthetic upgrades. You still get the time with small seconds at seven-thirty and weekdays at four-thirty. Calibre SXH1 provides seven days of power reserve from its twin-barrel architecture and 3Hz frequency.
What changed is the open-working of the bridges on the backside. Even the balance cock has been opened up, allowing a better view into the workings of the caliber. Additionally, the chamfering on the plates has been deepened for an even more refined look.
I have yet to handle this watch in person, but I like the direction that Czapek is heading in with the Quai des Bergues. Interestingly, the more modern guilloché pattern gives the watch more of an identity of its own. I think Czapek excels when it chases its contemporary design language rather than sailing too closely to what has been done before. It is fascinating to see that a little detail like this dial pattern can go a long way in this respect.
Size-wise, I think the 40.5mm case is likely to be popular among Czapek customers. For my taste, the 38.5mm size would probably be the sweet spot. But it is always good to see brands cater to a broad range of preferences.
The new Czapek Quai des Bergues 40.5mm N°17 Double Soleil is available for pre-order now in Deep Blue and Tuxedo Black. Both are priced at CHF 18,800 excluding VAT and can be reserved on the Czapek website.
What do you think of the Czapek Quai des Bergues 40.5mm N°17 with the new Double Soleil dial? Let us know in the comments below.