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All aboard!! The Vario -One Hand Navi

Watches have been done for centuries. The number of shapes and designs that we can find these days is mesmerizing. This means when even the smallest and newest detail makes it into the final product, we all get excited, or at least I do.

I think this is a noble approach as these days, watch brands take inspiration on existing models and not necessarily from their line up or catalogue. The reason why some watches are timeless is because they took inspiration from other objects like portholes, tanks and even snakes.

The new Vario one Hand Navi is one of those watches. Taking inspiration from an old ship’s telegraph, making it unique in its kind. We all have seen that iconic scene from Titanic when the captain says: ‘’ Take Her to Sea, Mr. Murdoch", and those bronze telegraphs ring and appear on the screen making the ship to go at full speed. The real artifact provides Vario with a good canvas for a one hand watch and I believe is well executed in terms of design. Join me to find out the details.

The specifications

The Single Hand Navi is 38mm in diameter, which is great for this type of complication, the main reason is because the lack of hands could make the watch look austere, perhaps empty but not in this case. To enhance the look of the dial, there is a horizontal wave pattern and a seconds complication at 4:30 which sits on a concentric designed subdial. There are many details in the One Hand Navi, and like the ship’s telegraph, the numbers are in the outside right after the hour track. Each number has a different size font to fill the space, below at the same track we find 4-minute markers representing 15 minutes each. The idea is to read the number where the Breguet style hour hand is pointing, from there try to see how close is to each marker. For example, if the single hand is pointing to: ‘’Eleven’’ and at the same time to the second marker, it would mean that the time is somewhere around 11:30.

At this point you might be wondering: why do I want a watch that cannot tell time accurately?’’ and that is a fair question, but I kept on thinking: ‘’do we need to know the exact time all the time?’’. I must admit that there is something liberating to understand that you are close to an hour and that is it. We live in a world where everything is so strict and so precise, the Navi one hand is a layback companion, the hippie cousin that is late, but the party only starts with him.

The case is another part that deserves attention. I enjoyed the coin edge of the bezel mixed with the brushed surfaces, its all well put together.  The watch extends to 46mm which makes it compact and easy to wear every day.

The Vario One Hand Navi comes with Miyota 82s5 which packs a tad more than 40 hours power reserve, hacking seconds and automatic winding. It is a good workhorse that keeps the watch under 11mm of thickness.

On the wrist

I wore the Single Hand Navi for a full week and doesn’t disappoint, it is a fun watch to wear, and I enjoyed that pop of colour on the seconds hand, it breaks the white dial nicely. The watch is small, but it has a good presence, feels more like a tool watch than a dress one even if it calls out the old sea glory days. The legibility is good because of the black font against the crispy white dial, I have to say that even that the watch is not trying to be accurate, the potential error reading the time is very minimal.

With relatively small dimensions and a thin profile the One Hand Navi works well for my 6.25-inch wrist. It is comfortable and part of this is due to the fact that Vario has paired with a new vintage style German leather which tappers from 20 mm to 16mm. It is one of the softest leather straps I’ve tried so far and the quality its very high with well stitched sides and defined grained texture.

The Vario One Hand Navi is a watch that can blend in a variety of situation, I could feel at home as field watch because of the minimalist layout, a good nautical choice given the design and 100 meters of water resistance but also causal one because of its size.


I certainly enjoyed the time with the new addition from Vario. While wearing the watch I always kept on thinking that nothing else looks like this watch. It comes in with a very good package in terms of features and design, this is why I believe it deserves your attention. Also is good to point out that the One Hand Navi is operating in a very low-price bracket at 354 GBP, this is very unique for an original design watch.

The part of not knowing the exact time is something that I enjoyed. According to elegant etiquette rules, it is uncouth to know the exact time at an event, it would mean that you have another place to go, and this is the reason why there is no second hands on cocktail watches. Plus, we always check the time on our phones, the wristwatch for us nerds are an escape.

The One Hand Navi comes in 5 different variations: our cloud white, a deep blue which seems to be among the favourites, a teal clear water blue, a storm grey and a sand beige. All these variations are limited to 80 pieces each.


Case diameter: 38mm

Case thickness: 11mm

Crystal: domed sapphire crystal with inner AR applied

Lug width: 20mm

Lug to lug: 46mm

Case Material: 316L stainless steel (coated for scratch resistance) with solid caseback

Movement: Miyota 82s5, 21.6kpbh, more than 40 hours power reserve, hack and wind

Water resistance: 10 atm

Strap: Vintage style German leather (20mm taper to 16mm)




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