First introduced in 1984 and named after a picturesque tourist spot on the Italian coast, the IWC Portofino occupies the role of the brand’s refined and elegant dress watch. According to legend, the idea for the Portofino was created after IWC’s head watchmaker Kurt Klaus and head designer Hanno Burtscher had a glass of wine and decided to turn the Lepine Moonface pocket watch into a wristwatch by adding lugs to the side of the case. Since its first appearance, the Portofino collection has been an integral part of IWC’s catalog, and the latest additions to the IWC Portofino line-up include a few different models in 34mm and 37mm cases, further expanding the brand’s refined dress collection. views and allows it to appeal to a much wider range of potential buyers.
The new IWC Portofino watches are offered in stainless steel or 18k 5N rose gold, with the 34mm models coming in at 8.7mm or 8.9mm-thick (depending on the specific bezel configuration), while the 37mm options measure 9.4mm. -thickness for the standard three-hand models or 11.3mm thick for the version equipped with the moonphase complication. Despite their differences, all models share the same classic round case shape with convex sapphire crystals above their dials and push/pull winding crowns at the 3 o’clock position, which give access to their movements and help give them 50 meters. Water resistance. While all the different 34mm models have solid casebacks attached with four small screws, the 37mm versions have sapphire display windows in their casebacks that provide a view of their internal movements. While the standard configuration for the IWC Portofino consists of a simple, smooth fixed bezel, select models from the new 34mm and 37mm lineups are also available with diamond-set bezels, which further add to their refined case designs and give them a decidedly luxurious overall look.
While diamonds on the bezel are optional, they are mandatory when it comes to all dials fitted to the new 34mm and 37mm IWC Portofino watches. While the standard three-hand models feature the collection’s elongated Roman numeral hour markers at the 12 and 6 o’clock positions, all twelve markers feature a small diamond that is set outside their rim on the minute track. This applies to all 34mm models, including the Day & Night version, which swaps the Roman numerals at the bottom of its dial for a day/night indicator displayed by a stylized rotating disc. Dial color options for 34mm models include green, silver and blue; However, the green dial is only available in the time-only version and not the day & night edition.
For the 37mm IWC Portofino watches, dial colors include green, slate and silver, but the Portofino Moon Phase 37 model is exclusively offered with a silver dial and the Roman numeral at 12 o’clock is dropped and replaced with a traditional moonface display. As with the 34mm models, all dials for the 37mm watches feature 12 diamonds set into their minute tracks, and they also get a date window at the 3 o’clock position. For most of the new IWC Portofino models, the finishing on the hands and hour markers matches the case’s material, meaning the 18k gold models get matching gold-plated parts, while the stainless steel versions have rhodium-plated hands and markers. . With this in mind, one of the 34mm time-only models pairs a gold-finished dial furniture with a stainless steel case.
Powering both time-only versions of the IWC Portofino 34 is the brand’s caliber 35100 movement, while the Day & Night model receives caliber 35180. Both the self-winding winding movements are based on the Sellita SW300-1 and therefore run on frequency. 28,800vph with cal. 35100 offers users a power reserve of around 42 hours, while the Cal. The 35180 sees a small increase in autonomy with a 50-hour power reserve. In contrast, the IWC Portofino 37 models are all powered by in-house automatic movements from the brand’s 32000 series, and therefore all offer users a 5-day (120-hour) power reserve. The standard three-hand time and date models receive caliber 32111, while the Moon Phase 37 Edition is equipped with caliber 32800. The two in-house IWC movements run at a frequency of 28,800vph and are nicely finished with perlage, blued screws. Geneva stripes, and gilded skeleton oscillating weights.
When it comes to strap and bracelet options, most new IWC Portofino watches (including all 18k gold models) are fitted with two-piece straps made of fully recognizable Swiss calf leather fitted with butterfly-style folding clasps. Some stainless steel models in both case sizes also feature 5-link bracelets finished with contrasting brushed and polished surfaces. Color options for the leather straps include black, blue, beige, taupe and green, and each is meant to complement the dial of the watch it’s paired with. Regardless of the specific style or color, the various straps and bracelets for the new 34mm and 37mm IWC Portofino watches feature a quick-release springboard at the lugs, allowing for easy tool-free strap changes.
When it comes to official retail prices, the new IWC Portofino watches will cost the same as the existing models, starting with the 34mm version. $5,450 USD For the simple three-hand stainless steel model on a leather strap, the entry price is for the 37mm time and date version fitted with an in-house movement. $6,250 USD. Naturally, prices increase depending on materials and features, and if you opt for one of the solid rose gold Portofino Moon Phase 37 models fitted with a diamond bezel they can reach upwards of $20k. Since IWC is usually one of the first names that comes up in any discussion surrounding pilot watches, it’s always nice to see other IWC collections get some attention as well. While some additional dial options without the diamond-set hour markers might have broadened the new models’ wider appeal, the slight increase in asking price for the updated 37mm models with in-house movements is quite reasonable considering the significantly higher power reserve. They provide compared to their predecessors. For more information, please visit Brand’s website.