The patina comeback kid bounces back into the spotlight, trending again after a few quiet years. Bronze is cool, but I don’t think we can stress this enough: not all bronze is exactly the same. The entire point of bronze is the fact that it is the only watch case material that becomes a part of you. And I don’t mean the green wrist-circle you got from that huge 45mm crusty green bronze diver back in 2014. The Oris Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze is a sleeker and more elegant twist on the golden-tinged alloy, and it now comes on the brand’s most comfortable bracelet.

Bronze does develop a patina, just like a Rolex Submariner from the ’60s. Born when it was an actual tool, it all but loses its resale value if you refinish the case, removing scratches from actual dives and sun-bleached lume plots. The patina on a new bronze watch, however, proves its provenance by becoming part of your own life story. Therein lies the beauty, and you can remove it, but why would you?

Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze


Back with a winner

Last year, Oris released the Divers Sixty-Five in full bronze, with three pastel popsicle-colored beauties. There was also our own “Fratelloris” Big Crown Pointer Date, an Oris legend well known for its vintage panache. Yes, I’m still kicking myself for not buying one, but this one is nearly as good, and it comes on a bracelet. In fact, it’s the most comfortable bracelet that Oris makes. Not content with enriching just the Big Crown case with the warmth of bronze, this time, we get a complete package. And I want one. To make matters more difficult, there’s not one, but four versions.

Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze

A touch of soft gold

The first impression from the press shots is almost a perfect entry ticket to the closed world of gold wristwear. I know it’s pretty far from a pink gold Nautilus, but I’m a man of principles. I have a PVD gold watch in my collection, and I can never come to terms with the not-quite-gold feel. This is not gold, but the secure weight of bronze and the warm glow it gives off sure is tempting. And yes, un-patinated, it does have the luster of rose gold. Use some lemon juice or find an old toothbrush and a once-a-month clean will keep the glimmer. But that’s not the point, is it? Like a well-kept vintage watch, the beauty lies in the contrast. A play between the crisp print on the blue dial, and the dark, burnished details that will inevitably appear on the case and bracelet.

Big Crown Pointer Date


A play of warmth and cool

I enjoyed the tonal design of the Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight with its burnt cocoa dial, but Oris has a full deck of colored trump cards. From ton-sur-ton ochre brown and Bordeaux to fresh popping green and blue. The cool touch of the navy dial works as a perfect juxtaposition to the warm glow of bronze, and the green is a tasty tinge of apple. Contrasts in tonality, whether in your home, your clothes, or on a watch is a great way to emphasize a design. Gold-toned cathedral hands give us the vintage feel we love, and who can resist that charming red calendar hand tip? In fact, this might be the one Oris I’ve desired the most for quite some time. Then again, I’m still kicking myself for not securing the gilt-dial Fratello version, and here’s the deep Bordeaux color back again with that bracelet. I have a feeling the temptation might be too strong this time.

Or a strap, Sir?

I know, you don’t have to buy it on the bracelet, but I would most certainly choose it over a strap. The folks at Oris are masters at producing sharp details for a mid-range price, and their bracelets are no exception. I’m a strap-a-holic, so I will probably try it on a few straps, but for now, the bracelet glinting of bronze in the sun is mighty tempting. At a price of €2,300 versus €1,900 for the leather strap option, for me, the choice is clear.

Inside, beats the Oris 754 caliber with a 38-hour power reserve. It’s a solid 4Hz Sellita-based automatic movement. But I’m more impressed with the look, and I feel a renaissance for bronze. With its coin-edge bezel and slender 40mm case, the Oris Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze is a rich, golden ticket to a personal bronze journey.

Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze

Pricing and availability

The Oris Big Crown Pointer Date Bronze will be available from all good Oris retailers. You can also find it on the Oris e-commerce platform. Once again, it retails for €1,900 on a brown leather strap and €2,300 on a solid bronze bracelet.

Do you feel the temptation of this new bronze beauty? Or do already have a solid collection of patinated golden alloy wristwear? Let us know in the comments.