Up close: Hermès Arceau Squelette – the only Hermès skeleton wristwatch (live photos and price)

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Hermès’ only skeleton wristwatch is the Arceau Squelette. With its asymmetric, stirrup-shaped case, the Arceau skeleton is elegant in typical Hermès style.

Most Hermès watches, even the uninteresting but fashionable quartz ones, have a distinctive elegance characteristic with the brand. With its trademark case, italicised numerals and blued seconds hand, the Arceau skeleton has a lot of charm. With its upper lug shaped like a stirrup, the Arceau case is distinctive. And at 41 mm, it has presence, despite the rounded case shape. This watch looks good on the wrist and is recognisably Hermès.

Mechanically the Arceau skeleton is ordinary. The movement is an open-worked ETA 2892 – the rotor is a dead giveaway – but easy to look at. Though not exceptionally decorated, mainly perlage, simple bevel and graining, the movement is attractive and well suited for the case. I like the skeletonised rotor, which spells out “HERMES” in letters with beveled edges.  It is worth noting that Hermes has made admirable strides in moving up the value chain in terms of movements, and ETA based men’s watches getting less prevalent.

In Singapore, the Arceau skeleton is priced at S$11,950 (~US$9400) in steel and S$32,890 (~US$26,000) in rose gold, inclusive of 7% tax. For the steel model specifically; despite the ultra-luxe brand on the dial, that is a forgiveable price for a mid-range skeleton wristwatch. – SJX

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