Editor’s Note: This year, instead of making out wish lists, the Revolution editorial team played secret Santa to one another. Here’s what USA Editor-in-Chief, Keith W. Strandberg dreamt up for China Editor-in-Chief, Taitan Chen when he picked his name out of the hat.
Taitan Chen, the editor of Revolution China, lives in Shanghai and is a stylish guy with a true love for watches. So, as I began to think about his three watches, I knew that anything less than truly authentic would never work. He loves both classic and avant-garde timepieces, so I had the entire spectrum from which to choose. Taitan loves life, that’s clear, and he has a sense of humor about things, so I decided not to choose anything too serious, but at the same time, I wanted to keep the watches classy and stylish.
My first choice for Taitan is one of my favorite comebacks in recent years, the Corum Bubble. I knew Severin Wunderman when he first introduced the Bubble and I loved it then and I love it now. My choice for Taitan is the Corum Big Bubble Magical 52 Game, featuring a reinterpretation of the “Magic 8-Ball” toy that was first introduced in 1950. Though you can’t actually play the game with this watch (wouldn’t it be great if you could?), this reminds me of my childhood and hopefully it will for Taitan too — and underscore the role that decisions make in our lives. What if you hadn’t taken that job or become friends with that person? How would your life be different? The Big Bubble Magical 52 Game comes in a limited edition of 87 pieces and is perfect for Taitan and his lifestyle.
Secondly, I know that Taitan is a big Rolex fan and has a few in his collection. One I hope he doesn’t have yet is the Rolex GMT-Master II in 18K white gold. This is a classic watch, full of tradition, but it is also playful with its red and blue bezel (often called the “Pepsi” bezel).
Made for professionals, this watch will look good on Taitan’s wrist no matter whether he is lounging by the pool or working in the Revolution China offices. And because it is a GMT timepiece, it will help keep him on deadline when he is traveling.
Finally, because Taitan is such a stylish fellow, I thought an Italian-styled watch with Swiss watchmaking acumen would be perfect for him, but I also needed it to have something different, so I immediately thought of one of my favorite watches — the Bulgari Octo Ultranero Solotempo. A great-looking watch with jeans and a T-shirt, but equally at home under the sleeve of a tux, the Ultranero Solotempo would perfectly complete Taitan’s style. Because I like him so much, I would get him the rose-gold bezel version, which is the most striking iteration of this incredible timepiece.