Wear It A Weekend: Méraud Bonaire

Before you click away and call me a sell-out, this is NOT a sponsored post. I did not get paid in any way or form to post this, I don’t sell these watches and I don’t get any commission.

Well, let’s get started!

A few weeks ago, I sat with Méraud founder, Stijn. He gave me three of his watches to take with me on my trip to Greece. ‘Do whatever you want with them’, he said. ‘Take some pics and let me know how you feel about the watches.’

So in theory, this does not count as a ‘wear it a weekend’ post, but more as a ‘week on the wrist’. Too bad that name is already taken, Thanks a lot Hodinkee.

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Who are they

‘Oh great, another Kickstarter microbrand, who cares?’, I hear you say. Well, Méraud isn’t just another microbrand. All right, in theory they are, and they just launched on Kickstarter, but hear me out:

I wanted to talk about Méraud because the founder is a real watchgeek himself. He loves watches, has an amazing collection and knows the industry inside out. He is not out to make a quick buck and sell cheap bottom of the barrel quartz junk. -Cough Daniel wellington cough-. He wants to make quality timepieces, and uses passion to do so.

To show you: the Bonaire uses a Swiss made automatic STP1-11 movement and modified it in a no-date, instead of using the standard of the shelf movement.

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The rotor is engraved with the company logo, even though there isn’t a transparent case back. It shows that they went the extra mile.

And that’s why I dig them.

Stats

The Méraud Bonaire has a vintage inspired 39mm case, rated for 200m.
The Onyx Black has a deep gloss black dial, and the Marine Blue and Graphite Grey have one of the best sunbursts I have ever seen.
The Bonaire gets power by a modified STP1-11 movement, which has a 44-hour  power reserve and operates at 28,800 beats per hour.

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And let’s not forget about the bezel, IMO one of the strongest features. The Bakelite inspired sapphire bezel is just… Wow! Unidirectional, lumed, scratch-resistant sapphire, Bakelite inspired… it checks all the boxes.

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For who are these watches?

The Bonaire is for people who like vintage watches, but don’t want to drop the price of a new car on an old diver. Or for serious collectors who enjoy the vintage feel but don’t want to bring Fort Knox on vacation.

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Even though the company aims at young starting watchgeeks/collectors, I think this could become a daily beater for everyone who likes vintage but doesn’t want to worry about how fragile their vintage watch is.

Also, they offer a series of options on straps. If you buy a Méraud, you get an amazing leather strap, a  tropic rubber strap, a premium Nato strap and a custom springbartool. A riveted, steel bracelet can be bought . This really gives you the chance to use this as an adventure watch. Rubber for diving, Nato for hiking, leather for dinner and steel, just because the rivets are so damn cool.

Thanks to the drilled lugholes, you can easily change your straps within seconds. I personally don’t get why brands would step away from drilled lugholes. The back of my Seamaster looks like it has been in a knife fight.

How do I feel about them?

You get used to these watches so incredibly quick. It doesn’t have the awkward feeling of a ‘thirteen in a dozen’ Submariner homage. In contrary, these watches have a strong personality. It looks like Sean Connery could have worn this on his boat after kicking Goldfinger’s ass. From Ghent With Love.

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For more info, check out their website and instagram. If you are interested in buying one, check out their kickstarter.

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