Best known for its astronomical complications, Christiaan van der Klaauw (CVDK) has created a special run of its chronograph with full calendar, the Ace x Christiaan van der Klaauw stAriadne Amsterdam Star, a limited edition of 50 pieces for Ace Jewelers, its retailer in the Netherlands.
While preserving the original design featuring a complete calendar and moon phase, the stAriadne has a “fog grey” dial with star-shaped indices inspired by the “Stelline” dials found on 1950s Rolex watches
The Dutch independent watch brand’s choice to collaborate with Ace Jewelers, a renowned watch retailer in the Netherlands, was logical. While some may see it as another partnership, opting for the Ariadne for a limited edition, akin to the release made with Dutch retailer Reijersen, the stAriadne stands out with its unique appeal.
In contrast to the standard model, which showcases Arabic numerals and diverse dial colours, this edition stands out with star-shaped indices replacing conventional hour markers. The markers visually contrast with the textured grey dial and black counter rings. Indeed, the stAriadne pays tribute to the famed Rolex ref. 6062 with its stelline dial (Italian for “small star”). Star dials are a rarity in contemporary timepieces, rendering this release truly distinctive.
That being said, this edition essentially embodies the Ariadne in both style and essence. Ideally, CVDK could have tweaked its Valjoux-based chronograph movement and increased its power reserve to meet the standard norm of three days. However, considering it will be a limited release of only 50 pieces, priced at €7,180 (excluding taxes) – the same range as the standard models – this can be forgiven.
A “star” dial
The stAriadne is the latest iteration of the Ariadne, an original creation by Dutch watchmaker Christiaan van der Klaauw. It integrates a chronograph with a complete calendar and moon phase display. Last year, the entire range received a makeover, presenting a sleeker and more contemporary look. This was evident in its frosted dials, Breguet numerals, and counter rings.
The brand stated that the dial of the stAriadne draws significant inspiration from “star” dials, featuring hour markers resembling constellations famously observed on the Rolex “Stelline” ref. 6062 triple calendar produced in the 1950s. This signifies the initial adoption of such indices on its watches. In this rendition, numerals have been replaced by star-shaped indices, which are faceted and polished.
Moreover, the stAriadne features a fog grey shade, enhanced by a frosted texture reminiscent of Amsterdam’s cityscape. Correspondingly, the radially brushed counter rings are rendered in dark black, along with the majority of the hands, the moon phase display, and the day and month discs. There is an option to choose if one wants the calendar discs to be done in either Dutch or English.
Besides the cosmetic changes, it has the same dial layout as in the standard model, featuring a chronograph with a comprehensive calendar that includes a pointer date on its periphery, the date and month at 12, and a moon phase indicator at six. At nine, there is a 24-hour indicator that is housed within the small seconds subdial, while at three lies the logo of CVDK with its iconic sun with 12 rays.
The case echoes the present lineup, fashioned in steel with a 40 mm diameter. It keeps a screw-down “onion” crown positioned at three, accompanied by chronograph pushers at two and four.
The stAriadne also utilises the CVDK7758, which is a modified Valjoux 7750 that features the full calendar and moon phase complications. Found on other models of the Ariadne, it offers 48 hour power reserve and operates at a high frequency of 4 Hz.
Key facts and price
Ace x Christiaan van der Klaauw stAriadne Amsterdam Star
Diameter: 40 mm
Water resistance: 30 m
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, complete calendar, day, date, month (available in Dutch and English), day-night indicator, moon phase and chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 48 hours
Strap: Alligator strap with folding clasp
Limited edition: 50 pieces
Availability: Direct from Ace Jewelers and AceJewelers.com
Price: €7,180 (excluding taxes)
For more, visit Acejewelers.com.