Over the past decade, Hermès has made a name for itself in haute horology thanks to introductions such as last year’s Arceau L’Heure De La Lune, an intriguing moonphase model that captivated collectors with its ingenious mechanical movement and whimsical display.
For its newest release, the brand goes back to its roots as a maker of ultra-elegant accessories. The quartz-powered Nantucket Jeté de Chaîne d’Ancre revisits a design sketched by longtime artistic director Henri d’Origny in 1991. Tasked with creating a square watch, d’Origny gave birth to both the Cape Cod and Nantucket watch families that year by parlaying his original remit into two separate styles: the former became a square in a rectangle and the latter a rectangle in a rectangle.
Both watches share a key characteristic: the half-linked anchor chain shape that connects the strap to the case. Inspired by a sketch created by Robert Dumas—a member of the company’s founding family, who, on a trip to the Normandy coast in 1938, was charmed by the sight of a chain linking a boat to its anchor—the motif has become signature to Hermès.
That explains why the newest member of the Nantucket collection bears a gem-set, rhodium-plated and sand-blasted dial sprinkled with asymmetrical anchor chain links rendered in diamonds.
The gems—41 of them, to be specific—also dance upon the steel case of this Very Small Model, whose 17 x 23 mm size is the quintessential embodiment of the slender elongated silhouette for which the Nantucket is best known.
Available in stores as of next month, the Nantucket Jeté de Chaîne d’Ancre retails between $5,850 and $6,025. Why the range? In true Hermès fashion, the watch comes with nine strap options in refined shades, from calfskin in “swift amber” to alligator in “polished ember.”