The DB25 was a fitting vessel for the project, in that it scaled back some of the more outré elements of say, the DB28, which allowed the high complication to take center stage, and hoo boy, is it a doozy. As one would expect, the movement itself is beyond reproach, with a such goodies as a patented titanium and platinum balance wheel, silicon escape wheel and De Bethune’s innovative oscillating weight shock absorption system. Comprised of 420 parts in whole, the caliber DB2324 has a moon phase display that is accurate to one day every 122 years and remains to this day a tour de force of modern watchmaking.

This alone would be enough to recommend the DB25 QP to any connoisseur’s wishlist of perpetual calendars, but this watch has one particular trick up its sleeve that sets it apart from the rest: a three-dimensional representation of the moon that rotates in time with the phases of its counterpart in the heavens. Okay, fine, so this particular flourish isn’t exactly hidden – it’s front and center on the dial – but it is so elegantly integrated into the exquisitely guilloched dial that it may as well be.

True, the 3D moon phase is as much of a De Bethune trademark as are its skeletonized lugs, but as this is the first time that one was ever included in a perpetual calendar, it deserves to be duly noted. And duly note it, we do. The tiny, rotating orb is constructed from heat-blued steel and palladium and floats on a deep, mirror-polished indigo backdrop hand-engraved with a golden star field. It’s easy to get lost staring into that compact void, which is why we love the flowing hands and gently undulating curves of the dial, which round out the package and gently bring us back down to earth.

De Bethune DB25QP

De Bethune refers to the DB25 QP as “imbued with poetry” and, indeed it is. From the novel movement to the delightful dial and its otherworldly moon phase complication it is as much an ode to the tradition of the perpetual calendar as one could hope for.

De Bethune DB25QP

Technical Specifications

Movement

Self-winding caliber DB2324; hours, minutes, spherical moon phase indication and leap-year indication at 12 o’clock; perpetual calendar indicating the month at 3 o’clock, date at 6 o’clock and day of the week at 9 o’clock; power reserve of 5 days

Case

44mm rose gold 5N with integrated, hollowed lugs; open back in polished rose gold and sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective coating, water resistant to 30 meters (3 ATM).

Strap

Alligator leather with matching pin buckle in rose gold 5N