Timeless class

Karolina Kurkova stuck to a white-and-blue dress code when she visited Thailand for the first time earlier this month.

Karolina Kurkova. photos courtesy of IWC Schaffhausen

The Czech supermodel and actress donned a striped top matched with a dark blue skirt at the interview and later glammed up in an elegant white gown for the opening of the IWC Schaffhausen Da Vinci exhibition at Siam Paragon.

The timepieces worn on her wrist — the Da Vinci Automatic 36 and Da Vinci Automatic Moon Phase 36 — co-ordinated with the day and evening looks.

“Blue is the new black whereas a white and blue combination is a bit nautical and summery. As a fashion girl, I like wearing watches that go with the look,” said Kurkova, who has a dozen IWC models in her wardrobe.

The blonde beauty has been its international brand ambassador for almost five years. During this period, the male-oriented brand strategically moved into the female market by introducing the 37mm Portofino, the 36mm Pilot and this year, the 36mm Da Vinci.

Women’s watches actually have long been a part of the Swiss maison’s archives. The Savonnette pocket watch from 1914, a lady’s model from 1967 and Da Vinci Lady Chronograph from 1995 were among the historic timepieces showcased at the exhibition in Bangkok.

“The new Da Vinci lady’s watches are more rounder and softer, making them more refined and feminine. Adding diamonds, fashionable straps and bracelets further appeal to women,” she noted.

Introduced in 1969, the original Da Vinci was housed in a hexagonal gold case with a solid gold strap. In 1985, a perpetual calendar appeared in a round gold case with a twin-frame bezel inspired by Leonardo da Vinci’s sketch depicting a port fortification in Piombino.

The Renaissance Man also drew a geometrical figure of overlapping circles in his Codex Atlanticus, with this “Flower of Life” symbol engraved on the case back of the new lady’s timepieces.

Kurkova would love to time-travel to different eras such as the Renaissance, when Leonardo da Vinci was the most important scientist and artist of his time.

Stainless-steel Da Vinci Automatic 36 with a dark blue dial and matching alligator strap.

“I would love to be a fly on the wall and experience what it was really like,” she said. “But I wouldn’t go back in time for the sake of changing something. Things happen for different reasons and life is about experiencing them — even when they are hard or painful — as lessons that make you stronger and a better person.”

Regarding time management, she aims for a balance between professional and family life while sparing “me time” for herself.

“I’m constantly learning to be more organised in a fast-paced world that keeps us busy doing so many things,” said the mother-of-two boys. “It’s about being present and devoted at that time, whether focusing on my work or on my kids. It’s not easy but you will find your rhythm.”

On timekeeping, her watch of the day often depends on the mood besides the style. Her faves include the new Da Vinci Automatic 36 with a dark blue dial and matching strap, and the Portofino Automatic 37 with a diamond-set bezel, slate-coloured dial and grey strap.

Stainless steel Da Vinci Automatic Moon Phase 36 with a silver-plated dial and dark blue alligator strap.

She also steals her husband’s Portugieser and wears the oversized timepiece when travelling as if taking him with her.

“It’s nice that a woman can wear a men’s watch — something a bit more bold and masculine,” she said. “The Portugieser is one thing we can both share. Unfortunately, he can’t wear my Da Vinci women’s models.”

Red-gold Da Vinci Automatic 36 with a diamond-set bezel and the ‘Flower of Life’ engraved on its case back.