The face of the Mondaine Classic Swiss Railways (SBB) watch has been a mainstay of minimalist, Bauhaus design for 70 years. It was in 1944 that Hans Hilfiker, a Swiss engineer, designer, and employee of the Federal Swiss Railways, created a clock for the railway platforms. Known as the “Official Swiss Railways Clock,” the design features an iconic red paddle-shaped second hand, inspired by the paddles that were used to signal the arrival and departure of the Swiss trains, and an easy-to-read black and white face. This signature design has been responsible for the legendary punctuality of the Swiss rail network for seven decades.
The Mondaine watch company, which was founded by Erwin Bernheim in 1951 and is still owned and operated by the Bernheim family today, found inspiration in the blueprint of the iconic, patented design of the Railways Clock and turned it into a watch collection officially licensed by the Federal Swiss Railways.
Nearly 30 years after releasing its world-famous Swiss Railways SBB watch, Mondaine launched its Helvetica family No. 1 collection of watches. This collection was inspired by the 1957 Helvetica font, perhaps the most popular and widespread font ever created. Helvetica is the Latin word for "Swiss." As such, it expresses many of the Alpine Republic's values and qualities: neutrality, discreetness, efficiency, and timeliness. The values align perfectly with the Mondaine brand.
A favorite of architects, designers, artists, innovators and influencers around the globe for its timeless appeal and pure, unfettered approach to design, Mondaine timepieces represent the epitome of craftsmanship, punctuality, precision, uncomplicated, and concise design.
Mondaine is on the brink of history; in a technology driven industry, creating a cutting-edge smart watch which still upholds the Swiss timepiece standards: always on time, high quality, beautiful design. Not simply a wearable device, the Mondaine Helvetica 1 Smart is an accessory in line with the brand’s core values: timeless, simple, different, and can be passed down for generations. Inside all Mondaine Helvetica 1 Smart watches is the latest in smart technology focused on monitoring activity and sleep, featuring MotionX® activity tracking, Sleeptracker® sleep monitoring, sleep cycle alarms, get-active alerts, adaptive coaching and automatic time alignment. The watch does not need to be recharged regularly, boasting a 2+ year battery life.
For 70 years, the legendary 2-second pause on the Official Swiss Railway (SBB) clocks has fascinated travelers at railway stations across Switzerland. Once every minute, the second hand pauses at the 12 o’clock position, creating the illusion of a stop in time – 2 seconds of stillness and then a jump forward, with the second hand starting its next 58-second rotation. Mondaine has brought this magical moment from the railway station to the wrist with the introduction of the Mondaine Official Swiss Railways stop2go watch.
Tourneau is an authorized Mondaine retailer with the widest assortment of fine watches and accessories. Whether you are looking for a specific Mondaine model or seeking information about current selections, Tourneau specialists are here to help.