Moonphase watches are among the most elegant timepieces with complications that are available for a relatively affordable price. A simple classic three-hand watch is perfect for most occasions when you need to dress smartly. A moonphase, however, adds a touch of elegance even to that, elevating the watch to another level. At least this is how I look at it. I’ve had my fair share of moonphase watches in the past from Leonidas to Omega Cosmic and beyond. Certain sporty pieces, like a Speedmaster Pro, also bear this complication. Lastly, watch icons such as Patek Philippe’s 5970, my exit watch, has a moonphase indicator too. I associate the name Montblanc with such elegance. This is why I really love the look of the Montblanc Star Legacy Moonphase. Such a sophisticated and simple watch with a moonphase indicator and a date.
The Star Legacy collection is a special line within the Montblanc watch collection. It offers men’s and ladies watches from an affordable price tag to a 6-figure amount. Simple time-only watches are the majority, but you can find full calendars, chronographs or even tourbillons. The watches are either steel or precious metal. Round cases, white dials, blued steel leaf hands, and crocodile leather straps highlight this collection. The Star Legacy Moonphase blends into this collection but also stands out a bit due to its dial color. Other than the moonphase model, the Star Legacy Automatic Date, and the Star Legacy Small Second are the other model with darker tone dials. So the Star Legacy Moonphase is a fairly unique watch but only because of the dial.
With its diameter of 42mm, the Montblanc Star Legacy Moonphase is among the largest watches in the collection. Compared to its size the watch is not too thick at less than 11mm. The large round case has short and fat lugs which optically make the watch look bigger despite the darker dial color. Large onion crown on the right side with no crown guard. It’s also not screw-down the water resistance is provided by an O-ring in the crown. The adjusters for the date and the moonphase indicator are the sides of the case. One of the is at 8 o’clock the other is at the 4. To correct the features you need a pushpin that Montblanc gives you with the watch. As you would have it with dress watches, the whole case is polished. The bezel is fixed and holds the domed sapphire crystal in place.
The back of the watch, like many watches these days, has a display window. It is a screw-down back, steel just like the rest of the Star Legacy Moonphase. Around the display window, you can see some details about the timepiece. We can learn that the water resistance is 30 meters and that the watch, like all Montblanc watches, is Swiss Made. Funnily enough, not many know that Montblanc is actually a German brand with its headquarters in Hamburg.
Through the sapphire caseback, we have the chance to admire the heart and soul of the Montblanc Star Legacy, the caliber MB 29.14. It is an automatic movement with 21 jewels and approximately 42 hours of power reserve. The beat per hour rate is the – nowadays usual – 28,800. This is not an in-house caliber by Montblanc, that would definitely have an impact on the price tag. The base movement of the MB 29.14 is Sellita’s SW200-1, basically the same caliber as the ETA 2824. You all know the story. If not, here’s a link to it. Now, the SW200-1 is a time-only movement so the MB 29.14 caliber also has a moonphase-and-date module by Dubois-Depraz (9314) at the 6 o’clock position. If you know Montblanc’s line up this might sound familiar to you. Their Heritage Spirit Moonphase models use this very movement as well.
The Montblanc Star Legacy Moonphase’s dial layout is very clean. You have a dial which is divided to a smooth, brushed outer ring with Breguet numerals and an inner circle with a concentric pattern. Every hour index has its numeral except for the 6. All of them are rhodium coated Arabic numbers. Leaf hands make the watch look more elegant, with the same rhodium coating as the numbers. The upper side of the dial has nothing else going on other than the brand name. At the 6 you have a sub-dial which is the indicator for both complications. The numbers 1-31 are around the subdial indicating the date. While the upper part has an aperture for the moonphase disc. Note how Montblanc’s famous logo made it to the lower part of the subdial.
You can find the same logo (that you can see on the top of their pens) on the crown too, by the way. We kind of touched the dial color issue above but did not dig into it deeper. Montblanc offers the Star Legacy with a silver-white dial. That has a more traditional look in my opinion. This version, however, comes with a slate gray dial tone. It is a deeper color of course but also very interesting when the light hits it. Slate gray has a certain shine which shows beautifully. Especially since the dial surface has two different types of patterns. I find this piece with the gray dial more elegant and a bit different than the other models. Price-wise there is no difference between the two. You can choose whichever you fancy without worrying about the price tag.
Speaking of prices. The Montblanc Star Legacy Moonphase is €3,950 ($4,200) including VAT and shipping. I strongly feel that for what you are getting this is a fair price. It’s not a cheap watch but Montblanc does not play in that segment. They never did. The Star Legacy, however, is a beautifully made and very well executed timepiece. It has a complication that sets it apart from most dress watches. It’s also worth mentioning that the Montblanc Star Legacy comes on an alligator strap. Montblanc has its own leather manufacture in Florence, Italy where their luxury leather goods are coming from. This strap is also their product. For a dress watch, 42mm might seem too large to many. Still, this is the trend these days. It is indeed a prominent size. Though with this darker dial the Star Legacy does not look too big on the wrist.
If you would like to visit Montblanc’s site, please follow this link.
Balázs joined Fratello Watches in 2014 and he has been a fan of watches as long as he can remember. His passion for watches really took off in 2007 when he purchased his first fine Swiss timepiece. From 2007 up... read more