Founded in 2010 in Antwerp, Belgium, Ressence is owned and managed by Benoit Mintiens. As an industrial designer, Mintiens had a portfolio of designs including high-speed trains, aircraft cabins and even hunting guns before designing a watch. Hei s able to adapt a new approach to watchmaking, focusing on the future wearer of the watch.
The brand name is a neologism based on Renaissance and Essence. The watches are “built on the expertise of yesterday, crafted with today’s technology, [and] are designed for tomorrow.” The first Ressence line was introduced in BaselWorld 2010 with three prototypes. The first production of 50 watches, or the ZeroSeries, was launched in 2011 followed by SeriesOne in 2012. Type 3 was introduced in 2013 featuring the first oil-filled mechanical watch. Type 1 was introduced in BaselWorld 2014, featuring no crown and a slightly flatter case. Most recently, Type 5 was released, featuring the first mechanical diver watch to be perfectly readable underwater regardless of the viewing angle. All Ressence watches feature sub-dials which continually revolve with the main disc, described as moons in orbit around a planet.
Type 3 and Type 5 feature two separate seald chambers. One is filled with oil, housing the ROCS, with the other filled with air to house the mechanical movement. This unique oil feature creates a water drop effect where everything seems projected onto the top crystal as if it were a touch screen. An innovative sapphire case-back replaces the typical crown, making the watches fit better on both the left and right wrists.
Ressence will be exclusively available at Govberg Jewelers in Moreland Hills, Ohio.