Written by: Travis Farris
A long-time player in the industry of luxury watches, Tissot boasts the first mass-produced luxury watch in the year of its founding, 1853, and has been creating timepieces ever since. As expected of a company this long in the business, some interesting, weird, and excellent designs for luxury watches have been produced. One of these unique models is the Flamingo T003.209.11.032.00, an unquestionably unconventional design, but does it work?
I’m hesitant to say. As always when dealing with objects of fashion, all I can do is give my own personal opinion and leave it to the reader to decide of the product would work for them. However, with this specific version of the Flamingo, my opinion is resoundingly negative. This watch is silver all the way through, and with its simplistic design this becomes less of an appeal and more of a bore. The only thing aside from the company’s name on the watch face is a large “6” for the six o’clock marker. Maybe this was supposed to be an interesting choice of style and a departure from the convention of giving preference to 12 o’clock as the primary hour, but the effect is lackluster.
Continuing this review focusing only on this specific product, however, would regrettably be somewhat pointless… due to the fact that it’s no longer being made. Tissot discontinued this particular Flamingo model, a fact I was unfortunate enough to uncover as I was in the process of reviewing it.
But reviewing a nonexistent product would help no one, so let me offer an alternative. The Flamingo line still has several different models available, and all are vastly superior to the questionable T003.209.11.032.00. My favorite among them would have to be the T003.209.67.112.00, pictured to the right, which displays exactly the kind of unique style and grace I would expect from a long-time luxury watch producer like Tissot.
The diamonds are brilliantly placed, their symmetrical arrangement easily qualifying as artistic, and the display of only 9 and 3 o’clock seems somehow far more acceptable than only 6. It’s all about the visual design of this one, as clearly the entire flamingo line is more about fashion than function; beyond simple but effective time-telling, there’s no special feature to be found here other than its beauty.
The mother of pearl dial of this model, though, is genuinely stunning. Standing out among a crowd of solid-colored watches, the misty mix of colors on this watch’s face, bordered by silver and punctuated by a swirl of diamonds, gives this Flamingo a dreamlike quality that makes it truly unique among its peers.
Pricing on the T003.209.11.032.00 – the original subject of this review – is difficult to pin down since it’s no longer in production, but you can still find it on some retail websites around the $200-300 range. Unless you’ve somehow fallen in love with that design, though, I could never recommend it. Fortunately the T003.209.67.112.00 offers an absolutely brilliant alternative, and not much more expensive with a retail price of $400. If you’re interested in the Flamingo design, by all means visit Tissot’s website and look it up; several different versions are available for perusal. I’ve simply given you a peek at what I believe to be the best and worst of the lot.