Anonimo Nautilo Black Sunray
My passion for watchmaking is boundless, but I admit I've never spent as much time examining small and independent brands as I usually do with the mainstream ones. Lately, I have focused on studying smaller brands, not belonging to big groups, which often offer an unparalleled value for money. Sitting in my studio, I stumbled upon countless watchmakers via the Internet; some of them are solid and their business well established, others are ready to kick off from the starting line instead. They share great attention to product design and aim at offering high-quality products at reasonable prices rather than investing in large and expensive marketing campaigns.
Anonimo well exemplifies this trend. It is not anything unknown to watch industry professionals and aficionados, and we introduced it in our article dedicated to Italian watches, yet this is our first chance to add and list Anonimo among the brands we review exclusively. Let me start by first introducing where the brand originates from and its connection with the Florentine watchmaking legacy. Anonimo was founded in Florence in 1997 and headquartered in Le Locle, Switzerland, then. The brand's mission was and still is to pursue the Italian heritage in crafting diving watches while combining Swiss-made craftsmanship with a quintessentially Italian DNA.
Its founders, Federico Massacesi, a former executive at Ferragamo, and Dino Zei, a former military, and CEO of Panerai from 1972 to 1997 created Anonimo soon after Panerai joined the Richemont Group. That heritage is perceivable by the cushion-shaped case, a common trait among almost all the current collections. Designers evolved that foothold to create their style and identity. The latest addition to the Nautilo collection, the Black Sunray best summarizes Anonimo timepieces key touchpoints: sturdiness, functionality, and subtle elegance.
Sporting an innate diving watch DNA, the Anonimo Nautilo Black Sunray is a slightly less sporty take on the rugged standard Nautilo. It comes in at 42mm across, and is less than 12mm thick (11,80mm to be precise), thus representing a more wearable option than the large 44,4 mm Nautilo. Size and a flat bottom case back suggest enough comfort on the wrist, although this is something we hopefully expect to test ourselves, hands-on. The 316L steel case is satin-finished, with smooth sides and a screw-down crown placed at 4, protected by an elongated shoulder which gently tapers into the case.
The unidirectional bezel has a ceramic inlay and a stripped-down scale design which reproduce, alongside the luminous markers on the dial, the A for "Anonimo." The Nautilo Black Sunray is waterproof up to 200m and houses a flat anti-glare sapphire crystal atop a dial whose indexes are coated with plenty of Super-Luminova®. Through the transparent case-back, you can enjoy a view of the Sellita sourced SW200-1 automatic movement, showcasing a winding rotor personalized with a Côtes de Genève decoration. When fully wound, the timepiece runs for at least 38 hours. It is not stunning performance, but it's more than enough for a diving watch, and this movement guarantees proven reliability and an acceptable and stable running rate. This reference comes in three options: a leather strap, a rubber strap, or a three-link steel bracelet, the last being not my first choice. I would have opted for a more original design, honestly. The Anonimo Nautilo Black Sunray retails for Euro 2,470 on steel, and Euro 2,190 on leather or rubber strap. More details at www.anonimo.com
(Photo credit: courtesy of Anonimo Watches)
Francesco Falcone @Horbiter®