éraud Watch Co. presents the Antigua, a manual chronograph watch with a NOS (New Old Stock) calibre, the Swiss Landeron 248, and design details that evoke a maritime racing heritage. Fruit of a three-year process, the Antigua drop is a limited edition of 200 pieces. The Antigua follows the success of the Bonaire, launched in 2018 by the Belgian watch firm.
The Antigua was inspired by the golden age of chronograph designs, the 1960s and its Landeron 248 calibre. The name is an ode to the Antigua Classic Regatta, and the subdial located at 3 can even be used to time a moving start of a yachting race. Daring dial designs are available in two variants, deep Miho Black and cream Soft Sand. The Antigua’s serrated uni-directional rotating bezel is lumed and contains a scratch-resistant sapphire, designed for an active lifestyle.
Stijn Busschaert, founder and designer, had the idea for a manual chronograph in 2019 after the brand’s successful first launch. The calibre 248 was one of a family of cam switching chronograph movements widely used in the 1960s. The quest for the right movement turned into a two-year hunt through Switzerland.
“Any watch collector knows about the thrill of the chase,” says Busschaert. “This watch represents a historical movement in the watch world, as well as my connection to the coast and eternal love for the open sea.”
The search for perfection is evident in the design. Each movement comes with a unique “Méraud” engraving on the bridge and by using a see through caseback it’s something to truly enjoy. With this release and by manufacturing in Switzerland the brand is now able to move up a step. It’s a positive evolution for Méraud as a brand according to the founder.
The Antigua is named after one of the most renowned classic races worldwide, the Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta in the Caribbean. The regatta timer on the Antigua is used by yacht crews to count down to the start of the race, allowing boats to build up speed close to the starting line.
Managing a raceboat is physically demanding and the crew must execute complex and highly choreographed manoeuvres. A classic regatta also oozes luxury and finesse. All of these characteristics are embedded into the design of the Antigua. Elegant but functional, the watch is waterproof up to 100 meters below sea level.
The secret of the Antigua, as with all Méraud watches, is the fusion of vintage classic design with modern innovations. The two-layer dial epitomizes this dichotomy, with its stepped dial referencing the past, while the subdials have a distinct modern look. A tachymeter on the outer step features Art Deco numerals and returns in the “big-eye” 45-minutes subdial.
The Antigua has a slim and sleek profile, with a heigh of 13.50mm. The elegant case measures a perfect 40mm at the bezel and 39mm at the case. In addition, the case is finished with a mix of linear, circular, high-polished and brushed finishes. The refined chamfers on the lugs, drilled lug holes, a dodecagonal caseback shape are elements that reflect the same design language as the Bonaire.
The Antigua’s leather strap is made in collaboration with Molequin, the Belgian watch strap maker known and recognized for it’s outstanding quality, craftsmanship and ‘less is more’ approach. Based in Brussels and with a like minded approach to their products, Méraud is proud to have teamed up with them in order to carefully select the best possible straps on the Antigua. What started years ago between two collectors sharing their passion ended up in a true friendship.
The Antigua is being presented on a quality top-grain buffed nubuck strap. The watch comes with an additional rubber strap and optional steel bracelet, which can be interchanged easily thanks to drilled lug holes.
Case 40mm in diameter (bezel) - 39mm at the case. 13.5 mm in height. 316L stainless steel case and finished with brushed sides, circular brushed lugs with polished bevels, and lug holes for easy strap changes. The case’s outer bezel edge and caseback are polished.
Dial Double layered dial finished in either gloss black (“Miho Black”) or a warm grainy cream color (“Soft Sand”). Pastel colors have been used for the subdials as they bring calming and peaceful vibes. They have a soft look that is soothing and easier on the eyes yet it does make the subdials stand out by offering a nice contrast. Applied dial indexes, faceted and polished. Lume dots finished with “Old Radium” Swiss Super-LumiNova®.
Hands Large dauphine minute and hour hand combined with an orange “lollipop” seconds hand. All filled with Swiss Super-LumiNova®. Pastel-colored running seconds hand at 3h, inspired by the shape of a nautical compass. White or black colored minute hand at 9, for better legibility.
Movement Swiss-Made, new old stock Landeron 248 calibre. Each calibre has been completely overhauled. The bridge of each movement has been engraved with the Méraud logo. Manual chronograph calibre with 41h power reserve. No longer in production.
Bezel Scratch resistant Sapphire “Bakelite” insert with luminous numerals and indicators.
Crystal Both crystals (front and back) are made out of sapphire and treated with a colourless double anti-reflective coating.
Crown Low-profile polished crown (no crown guards).
Water resistance Pressure tested up to 10atm/100m.
Strap Two straps included. Comes on a MOLEQUIN leather strap made of French nubuck. Soft and silky to the touch but equally resilient. There is an additional tropic rubber added to the package. A stainless steel bracelet is separately available.