L E S
A M B A S S A D E U R S
THE ART O F TA K I N G TIME FOR YOURSELF VA L L É E D E J O U X :
I N T H E VA L L E Y O F F I N E WAT C H E S
THE MOST EXCITING N E W WAT C H E S
T H E WAT C H M A K E R S L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S M A G A Z I N E N O . 1 6
G ENEVA RUE DU RHÔNE 62 +41 22-318 62 22
ZURIC H BAHNHOFSTRASSE 64 +41 44-227 17 17
L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S A P P AVA I L A B L E F O R I O S A N D A N D R O I D TA B L E T S W W W. L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S .C H
LUGA NO VIA NASSA 5 +41 91-923 51 56
ST. M O R I TZ PALACE GALERIE +41 81-833 51 77
M A G A Z I N E
Dear Readers, Here at Les Ambassadeurs, watches are far more than just a business.
High-end timepieces are our passion. And we want to share this passion with
you. Our magazine, with its new format and expanded content, is the perfect vehicle for this. Joachim Ziegler CEO, Les Ambassadeurs
For us, watches stand for quality of life, taking time for ourselves and the finer things in life, like delighting in precise and creative craftsmanship. All this
excitement over smart digital watches does little to perturb us, because we have
been offering smart watches for over 50 years. The perpetual calendar, the Astrolabe, the minute repeater, moon-phase indication and the chronograph – these
are all technologies at the highest level. The masterpieces created by the watch-
makers in the Vallée de Joux have always been more than a match for the rapidly changing novelties from Silicon Valley, as our report from the valley of watches
strikingly demonstrates. And the great brands prove that. The Omega Speedmaster Skywalker X-33 Solar Impulse, for example, combines analogue and digital
displays. The Breitling Emergency is equipped with an innovative dual-frequency transmitter for search and rescue. The EMC by Urwerk boasts an electronic con-
trol system. And the Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk proves that digital displays are also
mechanically feasible. Compared with smart watches, these miracles on the wrist are a source of pure contemplation.
The tourbillon counts among the most captivating Haute Horlogerie
complications. Whoever has succumbed to these hypnotic gyrations has
discovered their power to slow life down. Slow living: the theme of this L.A. Magazine is about more than just slowing down – it also has a philosophical aspect. As the researchers we feature on the Jungfraujoch know all too well, it is about a conscious awareness of time. And it is about taking time for things that are ostensibly unnecessary, such as discussing art, for example.
The elegant watches that we offer create one of the finest links between art and craftsmanship. Swiss-made, naturally.
CEO, Les Ambassadeurs 3
D i s p l ay w i n d o w :
Luxury watches and accessories and fine jewellery at Les Ambassadeurs Focus:
Things are getting faster in all walks of life. Too fast for many. Slowing down is the new trend.
The Tourbillon, the contemplative watchmaking complication
Christoph Doswald on art as Slow Food for the eyes Fascinating Tourbillon Watches
Researching in the heights â€“ where time stands still
Beautiful and exclusive objects and destinations T h r o u g h t h e wa t c h m a k e r â€™ s l o u p e :
Where the watchmakers of tomorrow go to school
Wo r k s h o p :
Paolo Ciurcina, watchmaker at Les Ambassadeurs in Zurich Wa t c h S t o r i e s :
Setting your watch by the sun Craftsmanship:
of the most exclusive brands make their timepieces in the secluded VallĂŠe du Joux E s pac e C o n na i s s e u r :
A meeting place for watch enthusiasts People:
Events at Les Ambassadeurs Wa t c h e s & M o r e :
New at Les Ambassadeurs Service:
Watchfinder and more for the home Time Slot:
Manfred Fritz on the eternal time of watches
i Noble Buttons
The Royal Oak by Audemars Piguet, designed by the legendary GĂŠrald Genta, has been a watchmaking icon for decades. The characteristic octagonal design with the tiny screws is also found on the cufflinks by the same designer, which come in a range of materials and colours.
i Poetic Timekeeping
Can time be measured without movements and hands? Yes, with hourglasses! The hourglass by world famous Australian designer Marc Newson is particularly fascinating and exclusive. Over 3 million microspheres made of gilded or silvered steel trickle through the hourglass, made by hand in Basel.
i Heady Fragrance The historic tradition of grappa-burning and the Steampunk look characterise this fountain pen. The Grappa pen collection by Montegrappa is made like a fuel boiler of stainless steel, brass and copper. From the cap wafts the noble fragrance of Grappa in which an integrated piece of cork was dipped.
Text: Hanspeter Eggenberger
f Double Precision Two hearts beating in a single watch. In order not to overburden the movement that displays the time in Breguet’s Tradition Independent Chronograph 7077 model, a second, independent wheel drives the stopwatch. The small dial in silver-plated hand-guilloched gold makes this a masterpiece to behold.
d Smart Cube Your automatic watch keeps moving even when it’s not being worn. The watch winder by Swiss Kubik is only 10 x 10 x 10 cm in size and therefore convenient for travelling. It is available in aluminium in many colours, in leather, wood, granite or carbon fibre. And it is Swiss-made, like the watch inside. s Innovative Material Never has such a watch case been made before. The Luminor Submersible 1950 Carbotech™ diving watch from Officine Panerai is made of a composite based on carbon fibre – a long-lasting, heavy-duty material. And with its matt black finish, it turns every watch into a unique item.
All new products will be available during the year from Les Ambassadeurs.
Seductive Elegance Text: Hanspeter Eggenberger
i Noble and Gentle
The golden scarf, in real gold as soft as jersey, is a highlight of the Orofilato range from MimĂ. Using a refined technique, a 24 carat gold wire is woven into a fine thread. The ultimate in elegance to grace your neck.
Sensual rings of gold and diamonds inspired by petals caress the finger. The Giardini Segreti (Secret Gardens) collection by Italian jeweller Pasquale Bruni is devoted to the hidden gardens in the mysterious courtyards of Milan.
f Magical and Mysterious
i Soft and feminine
This elegant case makes the most luxurious smartphones even more beautiful. The Aster Quilt Black and Aster Quilt Blue models by Vertu are clad in black or blue leather with a quilted pattern. The high-quality leather comes from one of Europeâ€™s oldest tanneries, which also supplies well known fashion houses.
i Classic and modern
The rings from the Nudo-Solitaire collection by Pomellato are timeless and elegant. Made of rose and white gold and graced with emeralds, blue sapphires, rubies and diamonds, they complement any outfit. They can be worn individually or together with various colour combinations.
s Sensual and precious
For her Leaves collection, Charlotte Lynggaard has created some glamorous jewellery, inspired by the beauty of nature. The rings are made by hand at the Ole Lynggaard factory in Copenhagen from the finest yellow and rose gold. The 48-diamond version is particularly alluring.
i Sumptuous and refined
The constellation of stars shines like sparkling diamonds above the deep blue of the celestial vault. The Rendez-Vous Moon by Jaeger-LeCoultre with its striking moon-phase indicator is a hauntingly beautiful work of art. 166 brilliant-cut diamonds grace the 36 mm case.
All new products will be available during the year from Les Ambassadeurs.
The art of taking time for yourself
Life is moving faster and faster – our days are increasingly hurried and hectic. Slowing down offers an alternative. “Take time for yourself, be still, slow down” as Friedrich Nietzsche proclaimed as far back as 130 years ago. Through gazing at art, for example, or marvelling at the movement of a tourbillon in an elegant watch. Or indeed through demanding research work at extraordinary altitudes.
Those who lose themselves in pictures and exhibitions soon forget time. This need to slow down is leading to a worldwide boom in the museum and gallery business. And the art market is constantly posting new records.
ince 1970, an annual league table has listed the most important living artists. The German artist Gerhard Richter leads the way once again this year – for the 15th time! He is widely regarded as the most important artist of our time. His abstract works fetch the very highest prices. In February 2015, an anonymous buyer bid 41 million euros for a Richter work at Sotheby’s in London. “Never before”, reported the news magazine Der Spiegel, “has so much money been paid for the work of a German artist.” The painting is a playful composition of abstract colour tones. It is entirely non-figurative and bears no direct relation to reality. The artist himself
This invisible asset not only fetches high prices but also makes enormous demands on the artist’s time. And thus arises a paradoxical balance between material and ideal values. With his abstract colour fields, the American painter Mark Rothko embodies this contemporary dimension of art in a particularly striking manner. Like Gerhard Richter’s paintings, his images are incorporeal, floating and seductive. When a few years ago the Beyeler Foundation organised a rare Rothko retrospective, there were long queues of visitors. They could not get enough of the intense colours – so much so that the exhibition had to be extended. The time factor plays a key role in the popularity of Rothko, Richter and other artists. In order to create the aura of a work of art, the artists invest a huge amount of time. Training, reflection, experience, knowledge, skill, advocacy, innovation, credibility and much more are needed to create art. Gerhard Richter, now 83, leads by example. Until he achieved wider recognition, the star of the current market remained a closely guarded secret among insiders and connoisseurs for over 30 years.
Photos: iStock (Page 10/11); Christoph Doswald
Art historian Christoph Doswald, is a curator, lecturer, writer and consultant on issues relating to contemporary art. He has curated numerous exhibitions, including at the Kunsthaus Graz, the Villa Arson in Nice, the Kunstmuseum in Bern and the Academy of Arts in Berlin. He has also produced numerous art-in-architecture projects.
Slow food for the eyes
has said that he paints “a reality that we can neither see nor describe, but of whose existence we may be sure.” And with that remark he expresses an essential principle of contemporary art. It is quite clearly not about what you can see in the painting, but about a mysterious dimension which – in the figurative sense – lies beyond the canvas and the colours.
The price of Richter’s works was correspondingly low at the end of the 1990s. Nevertheless, he continued undeterred, creating picture after picture, developing over time, commenting on the German economic miracle of the post-war years, the Red Army Faction and the Cold War. All that is either visible or hinted at in these photographs and pictures that fetch such high prices today. Artworks are time capsules. They concentrate the spirit of the age, combining the knowledge and experience of an era in a physical and visual experience. And this is why pictures and sculptures require the special context of a museum. Far from the hustle and bustle of the world, museums offer a setting for works of art and a forum for reflection and meditation – a chance to slow down and recharge your batteries. They serve up slow food for the eyes.
We don’t go to museums to look at fine works of art. We go there to learn something about ourselves and human civilisation. Picasso’s monumental painting Guernica depicts the horrors of the Spanish Civil War. Michaelangelo’s 500 m² ceiling in the Sistine Chapel portrays the genesis of mankind. “The Kiss” by Gustav Klimt encapsulates the concept of a loving relationship in a memorable visual formula. In short, museums are places of collective self-assurance, temples of the present moment. Because the history of our entire civilisation underlies these paintings, the concept of time is exposed to peculiar strain when we go to museums. Studies have shown that people spend much longer in front of a painting than in front of a digital reproduction on a screen. And when they share the experience of what they have seen – perhaps
ANAËLLE CLOT, an artist and graphic designer from western Switzerland, created this magazine’s title illustration. The harmonious abstract forms, at once geometrical and organic, interplay with millimetric precision, and the kaleidoscopic effect inspires contemplation.
in the museum café – a new common perception emerges. In an agenda-driven age, such discussion about art is a luxury of the highest order, which more and more people crave. This can be seen in the increasing number of art collectors and in the double-digit growth in the art market. Above all, it is noticeable in the enormous and ever growing number of visitors who frequent museums. The most-visited temple of art in the world, the Louvre, reported another new record last year: 9.3 million people made the pilgrimage to Paris to admire the Mona Lisa.
The mystery turning on the wrist Watches have become seriously eye-catching accessories. People tend to look at your wrist, especially if you’re a man. And when there’s a gaping hole in the dial and something is moving inside, it gets even more interesting. “Is that a tourbillon?” they often ask. But few people know what a tourbillon really is or exactly what it does inside a watch. Text: Gerd Gregor Feth
A Photo: A. Lange & Söhne
t the heart of every mechanical watch lies the escapement. In the anchor escapement commonly used in Swiss watches, the regulating organs consist of a balance, a spiral spring, a pallet lever and an escape wheel. The point is to adjust each organ so that external factors such as varying temperatures or magnetism do not change their properties, in order to pre-empt deviations in precision. The spiral spring plays a very important role in this process. It “pumps” energy – metaphorically speaking – and thus maintains the momentum of the balance. The regulating organs in the pocket watches worn in waistcoat pockets until the last century had to cope with the effect of gravity on their movements. Only when the pocket watches were laid flat on a table did the gravitational
pull cease to influence the running of the watch. In order to compensate for these so-called positional errors, the escapement is mounted in a delicately worked cage, driven by the fourth wheel, and usually rotates once per minute on its own axis. As a result, the positional error is not eliminated, strictly speaking, but its adverse effect on the smooth running of the watch is offset. The first person to come up with this design was the Swiss watchmaker Abraham-Louis Breguet at the end of the 18th century in Paris. Aspects of the first watch with a tourbillon – as Breguet called it after the French word for whirlwind – remain the subject of debate. In his research for his classic work “The Tourbillon”, Reinhard Meis discovered that Breguet produced two watches, both similarly engraved with the
legend: “1er Régulateur à Tourbillon”. They bear the serial numbers 169 and 282. In fact, for number 169, Breguet incorporated his tourbillon into a foreign watch mechanism, based on an idea by the English master watchmaker he had befriended, John Arnold. He must have used it as a kind of experiment, because the construction of the tourbillon corresponded almost exactly to the patent, which Breguet probably filed well before the year 1800. In that year, he completed a second tourbillon with the number 282. In this watch, it is striking that the
The 0.25-gram tourbillon of the Richard Lange Tourbillon “Pour le Mérite” by A. Lange & Söhne contains 84 parts.
The delicate components for a tourbillon weighing only fractions of a gram are still being produced by Breguet to this day and require exquisite craftsmanship.
After the patent expired in 1811, Breguet’s colleagues also produced similar constructions. Frédéric Houriet and Urban Jürgensen may have been the first: they must have known the principles very well, because they also worked for some time in Breguet’s Paris workshop. The principle is quite clear and suitable for all escapement mechanisms, such as the Swiss lever escapement. How-
The first person to come up with this design was the Swiss watchmaker Abraham-Louis Breguet at the end of the 18th century in Paris.
rate of vibration is not the usual 18,000 but 21,600 vibrations per hour. Tourbillon expert Meis reckoned he knew why. While the troublesome positional error in the hanging positions could be offset by the tourbillon, there still remained a considerable difference in the vibrations between the horizontal and vertical positions, which could not be completely offset by an isochronously oscillating balance spring.
ever, it took a high degree of technical skill to produce such a light and yet precise rotating device. The art has spread throughout watchmaking in the last 200 years, while remaining exclusive – only a few watchmakers master the design. In addition to its functional role, the technology of the tourbillon offered a glimpse of the perfect craftsmanship involved in watchmaking.
Illustration: Breguet / © National Institute of Industrial Property
No wonder the tourbillon found its way into watches. Société Anonyme d’Horlogerie Lipman Frères (LIP) from Besançon in France were already making the first minute tourbillons with an anchor escapement in a rectangular case back in 1930. It remains a unique object. Afterwards, wristborne technology went through a quiet spell. In 1947, Omega brought out a wristwatch, but only ten were made. After the Second World War, tourbillons for wristwatches were produced only sporadically. The Geneva-based manufacturer Patek Philippe revisited the project, when in 1956/57 André Bornard built a rotating device in a small rectangular mould, which hung from a bracelet. However, it was not worn but played a part in the then popular chronometer competitions. Only in 1986 was the first Audemars Piguet tourbillon produced in a flat rectangular case, which even had the first self-winding mechanism. That created something of a small boom in the industry. Every self-respecting manufacture produced a similar small tourbillon within a movement. In recent years, various manufacturers have also produced three-dimensional tourbillon mechanisms, in which the cage in the case does not oscillate in a plane, but visibly wobbles. For example: Tri-Axial by Girard-Perregaux, the Spherotourbillon by Jaeger-LeCoultre and the Quadruple by Greubel Forsey.
With this watercolour drawing, Swiss-born Abraham-Louis Breguet patented his pioneering invention of the tourbillon in Paris in 1801.
The tourbillon is one of the most prestigious and elaborate complications in all watchmaking. Very few manufactures have the expertise to make them. 2
1. Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Extra-Thin Tourbillon
As a tribute to the legendary first Royal Oak from 1972, the ultra-thin Royal Oak Tourbillon revisits two innovations from this collection: a high-quality movement in an ultra-thin case and the first wristwatch with tourbillon and automatic winding from the year 1986. The watch has a diameter of 41 mm and a height of 8.85 mm and is water-resistant to 50 metres.
A tourbillon and a mysterious movement are the key elements in the Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Double Tourbillon and bear witness to the watchmaker’s outstanding heritage. As a certified Hallmark of Geneva, it is graced with a 45 mm platinum case in which the inventive magic of a watchmaking company at the height of its creative powers is revealed for all to see.
2. Bovet Grandes Complications Amadeo® Fleurier Tourbillon Virtuoso III
The timepiece is unique in that it can be used both as a wristwatch and as a pocket watch. Its front and back both have dials. In addition to the tourbillon, the red gold timepiece boasts a retrograde virtual calendar and power reserve indicator. The mechanism is intricately skeletonised and offers a glimpse of the inner workings.
Photos: Audemars Piguet; Bovet; Cartier
3. Rotonde de Cartier – Mysterious Double Tourbillon
4. 5377 Breguet Classic Tourbillon Extra-Plat Automatic
The ultra-thin automatic Tourbillon 5377 combines the traditional savoir-faire of watchmaking with contemporary innovations. With its thin 7 mm case, this model is one of the world’s slimmest automatic tourbillons. This timepiece is primarily a tribute to Abraham-Louis Breguet, who invented the tourbillon – the queen of horological complications – in 1801.
5. Girard-Perregaux – Tourbillon with Three Gold Bridges
Very few watches with tourbillons are as distinctive as the tourbillon with three bridges by Girard-Perregaux. For the first time, a technical detail of watchmaking was elevated to the status of an aesthetic element and awarded a gold medal at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1889. The new white gold version pays tribute to that achievement.
6. Roger Dubuis Excalibur Skeleton Double Flying Tourbillon
Photos: Breguet; Girard-Perregaux; Roger Dubuis; Vacheron Constantin
For those not satisfied with a single tourbillon, Roger Dubuis has just mounted two side by side. They are even “cantilevered” so that the view of the two cages is not obstructed by the customary bearing axis. A compensation differential between the two escapements drives the time display.
7. Vacheron Constantin Malte Tourbillon Calibre 2795
This elongated Maltese design reveals a particularly exquisite watch in rose gold, whose tourbillon cage is shaped like a Maltese cross (the Vacheron Constantin trademark). The view shows a particularly finely crafted movement with manual winding, developed at the Geneva manufacture.
Research at its highest level Nicolas Bukowiecki can regularly be found working at the research station on the Jungfraujoch. At his workplace, 3,500 m above sea level, his perception of time is rather different from that in the lowlands. Text: Hanspeter Eggenberger â€“ Photos: Robert Huber
Nicolas Bukowiecki in stormy weather at the Jungfraujoch research station.
he journey up the mountains begins with an early morning traffic jam: whether Nicolas Bukowiecki is heading to his office at the Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI) in Villigen in the canton of Aargau or all the way up to the laboratory in the clouds on the Jungfraujoch, the rush hour is an inescapable fact of life - the trains heading up the Jungfrau are as full of tourists as the underground is of commuters. On a fine summer’s day, as many as 5000 people travel up the mountain. Somewhere among them is the 41-year-old atmospheric chemist, heading to work from his home in Bern. “It’s certainly a special commute,” he says, “but of course I’m used to it by now.” For six years, he has been responsible for aerosol research at PSI and regularly spends time on the Jungfraujoch for that reason. Once he arrives on top of the mountain, Nicolas Bukowiecki steps through a door closed to the public and enters another world. The renowned international High Altitude Research Station on the Jungfraujoch has been located 3500 m above sea level since 1931. It is supported by an international foundation based at the University of Bern to which the German Max Planck Society and the British Royal Society also belong. It is used by researchers from all over the world for various projects in the fields of environmental studies, meteorology and medicine as well as materials testing for electronics. Even before the research station and the Sphinx Observatory were constructed, astronomical research was conducted on the Jungfraujoch, to which a railway provided easy access. Astronomical themes have always inspired watchmakers. Centuries back, clockmakers built astronomical clocks for churches, which charted not only the time but the various celestial motions and were often adorned with bells or automata figures. Thanks to the skills of innovative haute horlogerie craftsmen, complex astronomical facts can now be represented in such small format that they can be worn on the wrist. Fascinating complications such as the perpetual calendar, moon phases
and solar time, or the positions of the stars and planets can all be contained within a wristwatch, using nothing but mechanical means. The Laboratory for Atmospheric Chemistry at PSI takes long-term measurements on the Jungfraujoch as a gauge of global warming. Also up in the mountains, far from direct sources of pollution, dust particles can be found, which, depending on their chemical composition, absorb or scatter the sunlight and therefore contribute to the cooling or warming of the environment, thus influencing the formation of clouds. Up in the laboratory in the clouds, these particles are sucked in and recorded. “This data also contributes to the overall picture of climate change,” explains Bukowiecki.
Nicolas Bukowiecki frees up the air inlet of the measuring instruments, removing pieces of ice (top right). The rock of the Jungfraujoch provides a natural cooling chamber for the high-altitude research station (bottom right).
High-precision measuring equipment and accurate work are essential elements of this research. This is not unlike the craft of the watchmaker, for whom the highest precision is absolutely crucial. Even the slightest deviation or uncertainty affects the result, whether it’s the accuracy of the watch’s functions for the watchmaker or the
prognoses for the researchers that depend on the measurements. In both cases, only the best care and attention will achieve the desired result. Today, most measurement data is sent via the Internet directly to computers in the lowlands and researchers no longer have to spend as much time up at high altitude as they did a few years ago. Nicolas Bukowiecki generally visits the Jungfraujoch once a month and usually spends one or two nights there. For intensive measurements, he may stay for between a week and ten days. The longest time in a single stretch he has spent at the research station was two weeks. “After that, it’s nice to see some trees again,” he laughs. For longer stays, his
During his regular visits to the research station, Bukowiecki checks and services the various instruments.
Wind gusts of up to 137 km/h blow icy snow into Nicolas Bukowiecki’s face on the Jungfraujoch.
“High-precision measuring equipment and accurate work are essential. This is not unlike the craft of the watchmaker, for whom the highest precision is absolutely crucial.”
wife visits him from time to time at the station. But otherwise, the researcher is rarely completely alone. One of the two married couples entrusted with the maintenance of the station is there too and there are often researchers at work, “then we often have a cosy fondue round a table in the evening.” On such occasions, everyone must work out exactly how much they can drink, “especially when it comes to wine, which has a much faster effect at this altitude,” laughs Bukowiecki.
Photo: Jungfrau Railways (right)
In fine weather, the view is magnificent, but working at this level is more gruelling than down in the lowlands. When Bukowiecki reaches the Jungfraujoch, he has to shift down a gear. “At normal speed, the body can’t keep up,” says the researcher who slows down a pace or two the moment he steps off the Jungfrau train. Unless you do that, you’ll never manage. The lowoxygen mountain air also makes you “a bit dense,” he says. You have to think much longer to solve a problem. But just like in watchmaking, nothing can
In the thin mountain air, Nicolas Bukowiecki takes longer than usual to solve a problem.
be left to chance and everything must be exactly right. Slowing down and being cut off from normal life gives you a totally different sense of time. Even the day-night rhythm changes. “For a start, you don’t sleep so well at night. It’s very fitful.” So he prefers to work until one or two in the morning and only goes to sleep when he’s very tired. But the best time of all on the Jungfraujoch is when the last train heads back down the valley. “Up till then, it’s a kind of Disneyland up there. But then a deathly silence suddenly descends. That’s also usually around dusk. It’s a wonderful feeling.” In his free time, Bukowiecki plays the double bass in two classical orchestras and has thought about what it would be like to take his instrument up into the mountains. That would be a whole new experience. The “wow factor” of the early days has indeed gone, “but it remains a simply beautiful workplace,” says Bukowiecki. “I always enjoy my time up there.”
Jungfraujoch: at the top of Europe The Jungfraujoch is Switzerland’s highest tourist attraction. The highest station in Europe, at 3454 metres above sea level, is set amid an eternal carpet of snow and ice. Jungfrau Railways opened in 1912. It was a pioneering work among mountain railways. The rack railway runs from Kleine Scheidegg through the pass between the Eiger and the Lauberhorn in the Bernese Oberland to the Jungfraujoch. For seven of the nine kilometres that make up the track, the rack railway travels through tunnels, stopping at the Eigerwand and Eismer stations, giving passengers a chance to admire the mountain views through the windows. Higher still, in a world of nothing but rock, ice and snow, a host of attractions await them, from the ice palace to the Sphinx Observatory terrace. Key figures on the Jungfraujoch: Height: 3471 m above sea level Average temperature in February: -13.6 °C in August: -1.2 °C Lowest temperature: -37 °C Highest temperature: +12 °C Sunshine per year: 1,700 hrs www.jungfrau.ch
Text : Hanspeter Eggenberger
SELECTION i The return of a legendary brand
Marlon Brando and James Dean loved the Matchless Model X. The legendary British
motorcycle brand is set to return after al-
most half a century, with a spectacular retro-look bike. Only 100 examples of the
hand-built Matchless X Reloaded will be assembled.
f Diamonds for walls and floors
Black marble, inlaid with diamonds, mother-
of-pearl and abalone: “LuxTouch” is the name given by the London manufacturer Pietra Firma to the world’s most exclusive
and expensive tiles, suitable for floors and walls alike. A maximum of five projects will be created. www.pietrafirma.com
f the espresso machine as a collector’s item
To mark its centenary, Italian manufacturers Victoria Arduino are
treating their classic Venus espresso machine to a new technological
makeover. The 76-kilogram Venus Century will be produced in a limited, numbered series of 100. www.victoriaarduino.com
s the most exclusive property in Beverly Hills
Its previous owners have included media tycoon Randolph Hearst, Jackie and John F. Kennedy spent their honeymoon there and parts
of the classic film The Godfather were shot there. The “Legendary Beverly House” is now up for sale. www.hiltonhyland.com
p The best in men’s footwear
In 1849, John Lobb began making shoes in
London. To this day, the handmade shoes are considered among the very best footPhotos: TbC
wear in the world. The Becketts IV model in finest crocodile skin is particularly special. www.johnlobb.com
i A feast with a view
Guests at the Sirocco Restaurant and Sky Bar can enjoy stunning views over Bangkok. On the 63rd floor of the Lebua
luxury hotel, 200 m above sea level, top-class Mediterranean cuisine is being served. www.lebua.com
f Suite in the clouds
What better way to relax and recharge your batteries during a flight? The Residence by Etihad Airways on board
the Airbus A380 on the stretch between London and Abu Dhabi features a suite with a living room, bedroom and
bathroom. There's also a butler to look after guests en route. www.etihad.com 28
i Dream Island – and no neighbours!
Blue sea, white sandy beaches, green palm trees... On Coco Privé Kuda Hithi Island in
the Maldives, dreams come true – and there’s
no need to share them with others! The island, with its six modern and exclusively
furnished villas, can only be rented as a whole. www.cocoprive.com
i High-Tech. Sounds perfect!
Berlin-based manufacturer Burmester describes its entire-
ly handmade, high-end audio system as “art for the ears”. The devices that make music sound like a live performance
include the 069 CD player which represents the very cutting edge of what is possible today. www.burmester.de
f world’s greatest rock ’n’ roll band Photos: TbC
A 50 × 50 cm box set tells the story of the incomparable Rolling Stones in words and images. The limited series of 1150 copies is signed by all four musicians. www.taschen.com
L.A_THROUGH THE WATCHMAKER’S LOUPE
Watchmaking combines high-precision micro technology with traditional craftsmanship. Young people learn this fascinating profession at the ZeitZentrum in Grenchen. Text: Kaspar Meuli – Photos: Robert Huber
Making the younger generation tick
At the ZeitZentrum in Grenchen, above, young people such as Kim Siegel (pictured right) learn the art of watchmaking.
aphael Pfund bought his first mechanical watch at the age of 15, after experiencing a taster day at the ZeitZentrum in Grenchen. The young man from Zurich was admitted to the watchmaking school and is now in the middle of his third year. The 14 young men and women in his class pore intently over their repairs. Magnifying loupes at the ready, they work away in their snow-white coats.
is unique in other ways too - at least in German-speaking Switzerland. All the young people in the German-speaking part of Switzerland who study watchmaking – whether at a manufacture or in a shop – come here for the theoretical background, as well as part of their hands-on training. The watchmaking school was founded in 1884 in Solothurn by the local trade association and later became the ZeitZentrum based in Grenchen.
Kim Siegel, for example, is busy inspecting a wristwatch – her first customer order. “I enjoy the delicate manual work,” she says, “but being a watchmaker is also about using your brain. I like the fact that both sides are linked in this job.” Next to her, tall, frizzy-haired Arian Studer is talking to his practical teacher. They discuss which components of the rather aged Omega, in pieces before them, can be cleaned up by Arian himself and which components he must procure anew. “The class has only been here in the repair workshop for a week”, says Hans Holzach, “so of course the students need my support more at the moment, but in a few weeks, they’ll be much more independent.”
In addition to the 100 current vocational students, the school offers a fulltime training course to around 60 budding watchmakers. Students even live in the school’s own boarding house, as they come from as far afield as the Upper Valais or Grisons Oberland, where there are hardly any watch companies. “Those who want to become watchmakers,” stresses headmaster Daniel Wegmüller, “must be sure of their vocation, because it’s never just a stopgap.”
The ZeitZentrum in Grenchen is the only watchmaking school in Switzerland that takes on repairs. The school
The atmosphere in the ZeitZentrum is no different from that in other schools. Backpacks and bags are piled up in front of the classrooms, and the young men eating their sandwiches on the steps during the break are dressed in hoodies. Incidentally, women are strongly under-represented. Despite all the advertising efforts, they make up just 15% of pupils. However, they
Raphael Pfund (left) and Alexander Gotta talking to teacher Hans Holzach.
Since the explosion in sales of mechanical luxury watches, watchmaking is once again seen as a profession with a future. That is certainly apparent at the ZeitZentrum. regularly achieve amongst the best results in the final examination. The headmaster’s office boasts a number of striking table clocks, but the most exclusive timepiece is on Daniel Wegmüller’s own wrist, a chronograph with oversized numbers on the dial. A watch that was built by apprentices at his school. Mechanical watchmaking has been based on the same principles since the time of Abraham-Louis Breguet. Does that mean that very little has changed in the training of watchmakers? “The
basic structure has actually remained the same for decades. It’s all about understanding the mechanism, spotting errors and disassembling and assembling watches.” It may sound simple but it is in fact very demanding, as the budding watchmakers learn to produce almost all the components of the watch themselves. The headmaster’s chronograph itself has around 165 components. He explains that this requires manual skills unlike those used in any other technical profession. That means practice, practice and yet more practice, whether
in the grinding and turning of tiny pieces of metal or in setting the accuracy. “If you want to be able to adjust a watch exactly, you must internalise these techniques over several weeks.” The deep scars left by the watchmaking crisis of the 1970s in Switzerland are well known. Who wanted to become a watchmaker back then? In 1991, the number of apprenticeships had reached an all-time low, but the climate has long since changed. Following the explosion in sales of mechanical luxury watches, watchmaking is once again seen as a profession with a future. That is certainly apparent at the ZeitZentrum. In 2000, the school claimed a total of 100 apprentices. Today’s total is 160. In French-speaking Switzerland, where more than three quarters of the watchmakers are trained, the growth of the training programme is even more remarkable.
THROUGH THE WATCHMAKER’S LOUPE_L.A
But what will happen to all the specialists if the boom goes bust? Or if mechanical watches are increasingly produced entirely by machines in the future? Daniel Wegmüller confirms that in future there will be less and less need for watchmakers. However, he predicts a “huge demand” on the service side, as all mechanical watches will require servicing. And let’s not forget sales. “People who buy expensive watches costing over CHF 300,000 still expect a white-gloved watchmaker to fill them in on all the details.” Budding watchmaker Kim Siegel is confident of her future. When her course is over, she wants to acquire a vocational diploma and then continue her education as a watch designer. Smiling from ear to ear, she says: “Watchmaking really is a great profession. I highly recommend it.”
The disassembly and assembly of watches is part of the basic training in the workshops at the ZeitZentrum.
“Every movement is different.” Ten experts provide the ultimate service in the Les Ambassadeurs workshops. One of them is Paolo Ciurcina in Zurich. Text: Medard Meier – Photos: Maurice Haas
How well do your customers know the inner workings of their watches? Paolo Ciurcina: Although we try to educate them as much as possible, I am always amazed at how little they know.
Paolo Ciurcina, 31, is an in-house watchmaker at Les Ambassadeurs on Zurich’s Bahnhofstrasse. The Zurich-born expert completed a four-year apprenticeship as a watchmaker-repairer in the ZeitZentrum in Grenchen and has worked for a number of renowned watchmakers. He spends what little free time he has with his family and his two children.
For example? PC: That a watch requires regular servicing. People readily accept that with cars. But with a watch, they are amazed by this, even though it works uninterruptedly 365 days a year and the balance performs about 126 million oscillations in this time. You can’t do that without some wear and tear, although the quality of watches has improved hugely. It’s almost standard amongst top products to produce mechanical watches with a time difference of two or three seconds per day. At what intervals should mechanical watches be serviced? PC: We never pressurise our customers into a service. We say that as long as the watch is working well, an inspection can be deferred. This is particularly true of current models. With vintage watches, where spare parts can be difficult to obtain, we recommend shorter service intervals. What are the most common vulnerable areas? PC: Watches don’t remain waterresistant for ever. If you expose your
watch to water, the gaskets should be replaced every two years to guarantee water-resistance. If water gets in, it can lead to major damage. What else is particularly prone to faults? PC: It’s very difficult to generalise. I’ve been in the business for 11 years and I’m still amazed at how many different sources of faults there can be. That’s just what makes the work so exciting. Every movement is different, as is every wearer and the way they treat their watch. Sometimes it can be the mechanism and sometimes the escapement. And does the oil have an effect? PC: Yes, oil can also be the cause of malfunctions. After three or four years, for example, it decomposes. There’s nothing you can do to prevent this. When that happens, the parts have to be thoroughly cleaned and then re-oiled ‒ in other words, a complete service. What is the procedure when a customer brings in a watch for repair? PC: First of all, we make a brief analysis. On that basis, we decide whether to overhaul the watch here or send it back to the factory. The best thing is that we always remain a reference point for our clients. They keep coming back to us from all over the world.
At the Zurich workshop, Paolo Ciurcina makes sure that his customersâ€™ watches always run perfectly.
Photo: Timm Delfs
Setting the Clock by the Sun At first, the structure above the statue on Geneva’s Island Tower appears rather unprepossessing and enigmatic. In fact, it is a sundial. Moreover, it shows the time at noon so accurately that locals can set their watches by it. Text: Timm Delfs
he Inselturm, Tour de l’Ile or Island Tower is one of the landmarks of Geneva. It is one of the only remnants of a 13th-century fortress that once protected the island on the Rhône. At the time, the tower served as a watchtower and munitions store. In 1897, it was almost torn down, and was saved only by a referendum in which the locals voted to keep it. Instead of falling prey to the demolishers, the tower with the characteristic “hat” was thoroughly restored. It still guards the island to this day, but the traffic races by on either side – its central Gothic archway being far too narrow. In front of its south façade, the statue of local patriot Philibert Berthelier, his head held high and his feet in chains, has stood since 1909. He rebelled against the local bishop in the 16th century, for which he was executed in front of the tower. About seven metres above the bronze statue, a circular trowel emerges from the sandstone wall, supported by four iron rods. At the centre of the 60-centimetre disc is a hole. Enigmatic and unprepossessing though the structure is, it was extremely important from the 18th century onwards Thanks to the figure-of-eight loop, you can set your watch exactly by the sundial in Geneva’s Island Tower.
for the “Cabinotiers”, or watchmakers, who had their workshops on the banks of the Rhône where the sunlight fell unobstructed onto the workbenches. The trowel that protrudes two metres from the façade is part of a sundial, with which watchmakers, and even the bell-ringer of the tower itself, set their watches, given the absence of time signals on the radio or telephone at the time. But what use is a sundial without an actual dial? At first glance, such a device appears rather difficult to make out. It is only on closer inspection that the figure-of-8-shaped metal loop set into the façade becomes visible. Sundial specialists call such a figure a “lemniscate” or an “analemma”. Its shape rectifies the so-called equation of time, the deviation of solar time from mean time. In the case of the clock tower on the island, it serves to mark the exact stroke of noon in Central European Time. To see this, you have to arrive on time and observe the light spot as it pierces the hole in the trowel. As the sun traverses the sky, the light spot also moves from left to right across the façade. At the exact moment that it hits one of the lines, it is noon in Central European Time. Roman numerals are visible to the left and right of the lemniscate. They stand for the months and indicate where the time must be read. In winter, when the sun is low, the light spot moves higher than in the
summer, when the sun shines down at a steep angle. Originally, the sundial had only a vertical line to indicate noon in Geneva itself. This can be seen on several engravings with views of the tower. Things became more complicated, however, when,in the course of the 18th century, mechanical watches became more and more precise and people began to notice that, because of the earth’s axis and its elliptical orbit around the sun, sundials were inaccurate. Moreover, the arrival of the railways and telegraph in the 19th century required a standardisation of time. Soon afterwards, in July 1853, Bernese local time was introduced in Switzerland and the mechanical clock on the island’s tower – in the niche under the roof – was adorned with three different dials, one showing Paris time; one showing the time in Bern and a third one showing the time in Geneva. The next reform took place in 1894, when the whole of Switzerland switched to Central European Time. For this reason, since the renovation, the large dial under the roof and the midday sundial on the façade have displayed this time, one hour ahead of Greenwich. But this simple noon indicator, whose driving mechanism consists of nothing but the earth itself, remains as accurate as ever. At 12 o’clock, you can set your watch by it.
The High Valley of Haute
In the VallĂŠe de Joux, 1000 m above sea level, time seems to stand still, yet more than 20 major watch manufacturers are based here.
The secluded and remote Vallée de Joux in the mountains of the Swiss Jura is home to some of the most famous brands in watchmaking.
Text: Kaspar Meuli
he best way to get to the Vallée de Joux would actually be on foot. It’s surely the perfect way to appreciate just how secluded this high valley in the Swiss Vaud is at 1000 m above sea level, surrounded by dense forests and windswept mountain ranges. But our journey takes place on a spring day, when the valley of the watchmakers is once more bathed in sunshine. Sitting on the terrace of the Sur les Quais café in Le Pont, it seems like a Nordic seaside town, where time has stood still. A few walkers pass the time under the festoon of lights on the promenade, while in the background on the distant Lac de Joux, a solitary yacht charts its course. But our destination is another 20 km further, at the other end of the lake. Here, world-famous watch brands including Breguet, Blancpain, JaegerLeCoultre and Vacheron Constantin are housed among a few nondescript villages such as L’Orient, Le Brassus and Le Sentier. Take for example Audemars Piguet, where we meet the watch historian Sébastian Vivas. At the Manufacture, founded in 1875, he fulfills the role of Heritage and Museum Director. “What exactly”, we ask this eloquent connoisseur of watchmaking history, “distinguishes the cultural heritage of the Vallée de Joux?” “We produce objects that are anachronistic from a technical point of view,” says Sébastian Vivas, “but in a world
In the Vallée de Joux, some workshops, such as the Blancpain production site in Le Brassus, are surrounded by wild natural scenery.
cradle of sophisticated watchmaking”, depending on who you’re talking to.
where technical things are no longer built to be durable, our watches continue to thrive. They are a part of history and will be handed down from generation to generation, surviving their owners. You could throw away an iPhone, but you couldn’t throw away an Audemars Piguet. It’s simply unthinkable.” Meanwhile, around 20 manufactures and several suppliers make up the real heart of haute horlogerie in the Vallée de Joux, from Audemars Piguet, Breguet and Blancpain to Jaeger-LeCoultre and Vacheron Constantin. It’s all rather astonishing. That’s why this special valley is known as the “Silicon Valley of the watchmaking industry”, “a cluster unique anywhere in the world” or “the
But tradition, climate and seclusion are only part of the reason for this success story. Another is the cosmopolitan outlook of the industry, at least in the view of Sébastian Vivas. He has just returned from New York, where he met the architects of the new museum being planned in Le Brassus. The architectural firm is called BIG and is originally from Denmark. Oh, and it’s currently working on a new head office for Google in California. Our next stop is Breguet, one of the oldest Swiss watch brands. When Napoleon bought three Breguet watches in 1798, the manufacture was already 20 years old. Other historically important customers who have bought the watches with their characteristic guilloché dials include Alexander von Humboldt and Winston Churchill. In the village of L’Orient, Breguet has just completed an expansion of its factory building. The brief: to double production capacity in this simple but elegant building. The revival of the traditional brand is a success story in itself. When Breguet was bought in 1999 by the Swatch Group, the former “Watchmaker of Kings” sank into
Photos: Blancpain (Pages 38/39, 40)
These inventive people first acquired their expertise near Lake Geneva and in France. But over time, they them selves became masters of their trade.
This extraordinary story began in the 18th century, with farmers who filed and sanded their watch components during the long winter months, and finally devised ever more complex movements on behalf of Geneva-based watchmakers. These inventive people from the “Siberia of Vaud” acquired their knowledge near Lake Geneva and in France. But over time, they themselves became masters of their trade and “watch farms”, recognisable by the studio windows under their roofs, became an integral part of the landscape.
Photos: Jaeger-LeCoultre (top); Breguet (bottom)
In 1833, Antoine LeCoultre opened a watchmaking workshop on his parentsâ€™ farm in Le Sentier and thus brought the famous brand Jaeger-LeCoultre into being.
In Lâ€™Orient, Breguet, run by Marc Hayek (pictured in the background on the right), extended the production building to double the capacity.
The work of the watchmakers here at JaegerLeCoultre involves extreme precision.
Photos: Blancpain (top); Jaeger-LeCoultre (bottom)
Watchmaking at Blancpain in Le Brassus is still largely done by hand.
The Geneva watch brand Vacheron Constantin operates a small R&D department in Le Sentier and a manufacture in Le Brassus.
oblivion. But the late Nicolas Hayek himself took the brand under his wing – it’s now run by his grandson Marc Hayek – and Breguet has become one of the group’s main revenue drivers.
Photos: Vacheron Constantin (top); Jaeger-LeCoultre (bottom)
Cultivating their own roots, while remaining open to outside influences is the attitude that has made the valley what it is today – described in a study by Credit Suisse as one of the five most dynamic economic regions in Switzerland. The area has fully recovered from the dramatic consequences of the Swiss Watchmakers’ Crisis of the 1970s and 1980s. Today, once again, around 7000 people are working in the watch in dustry – compared to a mere 5000 ten years ago.
a building in Le Sentier valley could do with a lick of paint. Over in the La Ronde des Pains tea room, the décor certainly hasn’t changed for 30 years, no more than the wine-red street lamps lining the main road. Along the village road out of Le Sentier is “La Grande Maison” as JaegerLeCoultre is known in the valley. Here, too, tradition plays a major role. The history of the firm, which emerged from a watchmaking workshop built by Antoine LeCoultre in
But you won’t find any signs of extraordinary wealth here. Neither expensive cars, nor impressive villas. And many
Jaeger-LeCoultre’s modern Manufacture in Le Sentier in the valley is known as "La Grande Maison".
The VallĂŠe de Joux is tucked away in the Jura mountains in a wild and natural world of its own.
The former manufacture, known as “L’Essor” (rise, upturn) is now home to the museum.
The Espace Horloger Watch Museum in Le Sentier provides an insight into the art of watchmaking.
How wonderful it is that the Vallée de Joux is so remote from the world. Otherwise, many of the most beautiful mechanical watches would never have been built.
Photos: Audemars Piguet
1833 on his parents’ farm, is intimately bound up with the valley. For a long time, for example, Jaeger-LeCoultre did not produce watches under its own name. The fame and fortune went to the Geneva luxury brands, who commissioned the work from the Vallée de Joux. Of course, the most expensive brands are not all made by hand in the valley. The production areas are also equipped with computer-controlled milling to produce the basic components. However, manual labour and extensive watchmaking expertise are required when the components are assembled and adjusted.
For workshop manager Christian Laurent, there can be no doubt that such masterpieces could only have emerged in the seclusion of the Vallée de Joux. “Our profession requires the highest concentration and a great deal of peace and quiet,” he says. “It’s hard to imagine a better place than this valley in that respect. The magnificent scenery offers the perfect antidote to the work.” And as we travel back into the lowlands, we reflect on how good it is that the Vallée de Joux is so far from the rest of the world. And that people like Christian Laurent keep the faith. Otherwise, some of the most beautiful mechanical watches would never have been built.
A haven of peace and quiet: Vallée de Joux A trip to the Vallée de Joux is well worthwhile, not only because of the watches, but because the region is a real insider tip for walkers and nature-lovers. The valley offers a wide range of tourist attractions throughout the year. The railway line opened in 1899 between Le Pont and Le Brassus is still used on certain days by steam trains. The valley is home to a few (mainly) simple hotels. Especially recommended is the four-star Hôtel des Horlogers in Le Brassus. For watch enthusiasts, the Espace Horloger in Le Sentier is a must, with a highly innovative exhibition awaiting visitors. With the help of new technologies, such as tablets and 3D films, the watchmaker’s tables can now be visited as part of a virtual interactive tour. www.myvalleedejoux.ch www.watchvalley.ch www.hotel-horlogers.ch www.espacehorloger.ch
Photos: Les Ambassadeurs
1. A. Lange & Söhne (November 2014) 46
– 2. After-sales service (January 2015)
– 3. News from Baselworld and SIHH (March 2015)
A meeting point for watch lovers
At the Espace Connaisseur in our boutiques in Geneva, Lugano, St. Moritz and Zurich, lovers of fine timepieces are treated to captivating and exclusive insights into the hidden secrets of haute horlogerie.
“We want to share our passion for watches with our guests.” Ignaz Steg
S Photo: François Wavre
mart architecture, elegant parquet flooring and comfortable armchairs provide the perfect setting for this journey into the world of haute horlogerie. Visitors can browse the specialist literature in the library and admire a collection of haute horlogerie timepieces that is unmatched in Switzerland. With careful attention to detail, Les Ambassadeurs has created a display of exclusive watchmaking masterpiece collections and accessories from movements to safes at the Espace Connaisseur, where exclusive events on special themes are regularly held. “We invite creative people from the manufactures of our partner brands too,” explains Ignaz Steg (pictured), Branch Manager at Les Ambassadeurs in Geneva, “such as inventors and developers, as well as those who specialise in grand complications. Here, watch enthusiasts can interact with professionals who do not otherwise have a public profile.” These are “not sales events,” stresses Ignaz Steg, “it’s about sharing our passion for watches with our guests.” Each event comes to a close with a lavish aperitif, during which guests can continue talking to the experts. Customers and interested parties are warmly welcomed and can find out more about the Espace Connaisseur in our boutiques.
Espace Connaisseur evenings Professional watches: Sports watches High-end functional watches for particular needs. Geneva: Tuesday, 22 September 2015
Lugano: Wednesday, 23 September 2015 Zurich: Thursday, 24 September 2015
Exceptional complications: Grand complications
In the microcosm of the watch: special complications and their technical background. Geneva: Tuesday, 17 November 2015
Zurich: Wednesday, 18 November 2015 Lugano: Thursday, 19 November 2015
More information about events at the Espace Connaisseur: www.lesambassadeurs.ch/en/connaisseurs.html
OMEGA AND LES AMBASSADEURS To conclude the 2014 jubilee year, Les
Ambassadeurs and Omega teamed up to
invite customers and friends to an event at the Zurich boutique. Celebrity chef Jacky
Donatz terated guests to a range of culinary delights. The small watch workshop by Omega was a particular highlight.
7 1 Serge Forster (Centre: Branch Manager, Les Ambassadeurs, Zurich) with two guests 2 A great evening was had by all 3 Stephen Urquhart (President, Omega) with Joachim Ziegler (CEO, Les Ambassadeurs) 4 Jean-Claude Monachon (Vice President and Head of Product Development, Omega) and his wife with Yannick Jenni (Brand Manager Switzerland, Omega) 5 Celebrity chef Jacky Donatz (Hotel Sonnenberg, Zurich) 6 Raynald Aeschlimann (Vice President and International Sales Director, Omega) 7 Jรถrg Pongratz (Sales Manager Switzerland, Omega), Yannick Jenni (Brand Manager Switzerland, Omega), Joachim Ziegler (CEO, Les Ambassadeurs), Raynald Aeschlimann (Vice President and International Sales Director, Omega) 8 Rolf Richner (Sales Consultant, Les Ambassadeurs), Renato Vanotti (Chairman, Les Ambassadeurs), Marc Wagner (Sales Consultant, Les Ambassadeurs)
AUCTION BY LES AMBASSADEURS AND SOTHEBY’S As part of the events held to mark the 50th anniversary in 2014,
Les Ambassadeurs auctioned 14 artworks on the theme of watchmaking, with the
support of Sotheby’s, at a gala evening at
Hotel President Wilson in Geneva.
The proceeds went to the International Museum of Horology in La Chaux-deFonds.
1 Emmanuel Vuille (CEO, Greubel Forsey), Pedro Reiser (Sotheby’s) and Joachim Ziegler (CEO, Les Ambassadeurs) 2 Auction with Stéphanie Schleining (Co-Director, Swiss Art Department at Sotheby’s)
3 Régis Huguenin (Curator of the International Museum of Horology in La Chaux-de-Fonds), Joachim Ziegler (CEO, Les Ambassadeurs) and Stéphanie Schleining (Co-Director, Swiss Art Department at Sotheby’s)
APRÈS-SKI IN ST. MORITZ WITH HUBLOT AND LES AMBASSADEURS On New Year’s Eve in 2014, over 120 guests enjoyed the Après-Ski-Apéro laid on by
Hublot and Les Ambassadeurs at the Ice
Photos: Les Ambassadeurs
Bar in front of the boutique in St Moritz.
WATCHES&MORE All new items will be available in the course of the year from Les Ambassadeurs. Prices inclusive of 8% VAT. Prices subject to change. Pictures provided by manufacturers.
A. L ange & Söhne Audemars Piguet Bell & R oss Blancpain Bov et Breguet Breit ling Cart ier Chanel Franck Muller Girard- Perregaux Greubel Forsey H arry Winst on H ermès H ublot Jaeger- L eCoult re Jaermann & St übi Jaquet Droz L ongines Omega Panerai R oger Dubuis Ulysse Nardin Urwerk Vacheron Constant in Vulcain Buben & Zörweg Vert u 51
A. Lange & Söhne
Germanic precision at the service of timeless elegance
hronograph flyback and perpetual calendar: two of the finest watch complications in existence. But now A. Lange & Söhne presents them with a white gold exterior of remarkable sobriety. The display of the Datograph Perpetual watch is a model of legibility and will require but a single adjustment in the year 2100. All the information is displayed on the dial face, making this timepiece an absolute paragon of legibility. Since it was launched 20 years ago, the watches of the Saxonia collection have shared the same discreet design. The automatic version is presented here in white gold and is fitted with a solid silver dial in a discreet 38.5 mm case.
Datograph Perpetual – white gold Movement Hand-wound mechanical Lange Manufacture calibre L952.1, power reserve: 36 hours Functions Hours, minutes and small seconds with stop seconds, flyback chronograph with precision jumping minutes counter, tachymeter scale, perpetual calendar with date, day of the week, month, moon phase and leap year, day/night indication Case White gold, diameter: 41 mm, sapphire crystal and case-back Dial Solid silver, grey; rhodiumed auxiliary dials Strap Hand-stitched alligator leather, black Price CHF 130,500.– Ref. 380.027
Saxonia Automatic – white gold Movement Self-winding mechanical Lange Manufacture calibre L086.1, power reserve: 72 hours Functions Hours and minutes, small seconds with stop seconds Case White gold, diameter: 38.5 mm, sapphire crystal and case-back Dial Solid silver, silver-toned Strap Hand-stitched alligator leather, black or red brown Price CHF 25,600.– The Saxonia Automatic is also available in pink gold
Audemars Piguet Technical, aesthetic and iconic: the winning trio from Le Brassus
he Millenary is one of the last Manufacture watches to feature a specially-shaped movement, designed to fit perfectly into its oval case. Presented today in pink gold, it is equipped with a small seconds display and a gem-setting that emphasises its sensual curves. For its part, the Offshore Diver is based on the masterly design of the Royal Oak model, here housed in a 42 mm case that is water-resistant to 300 metres. The rotation of the flange can be adjusted by a crown at 10 o’clock. This modern, sporty model reproduces the “mega-embroidery” pattern found in its ancestor. For the first time, its in-house Manufacture movement is visible on the case-back.
Millenary Movement Functions Case Dial
Hand-wound mechanical Manufacture calibre 5201, power reserve: 49 hours Hours, minutes and small seconds 18K pink gold, dimensions: 39.5 x 35.4 mm, glareproofed sapphire crystal and case-back, water-resistant to 20 m White mother-of-pearl off-centred disk and small seconds counter, powder-pink gold transferred Roman numerals, pink gold hands “Large square scale” shimmering brown alligator strap, additional black alligator strap CHF 26,500.– ~ 0.60 ct 116 brilliant-cut diamonds
Royal Oak Offshore Diver Movement Self-winding mechanical Manufacture calibre 3120, power reserve: 60 hours Functions Hours, minutes, central seconds, date, dive-time measurement Case Stainless steel, diameter: 42 mm, glareproofed sapphire crystal and case-back, black rubber-clad screw-locked crowns, water-resistant to 300 m Dial Black or silver-toned with “mega-embroidery” pattern Strap Black rubber Price CHF 17,700.–
Bell & Ross
The legend and the succession: BRs gain altitude
t has been ten years since the appearance of the BR 01. Having become an icon in record time thanks to its square dial, today it is honoured through a limited edition, adopting the design codes of the original model with a ceramic case and an exclusive dial adorned with an anniversary logo – for new-wave aeronautical purists! As for the BR-X1 Skeleton chronograph – Red edition, it charts a course for the next ten years: titanium, ceramic and rubber are combined within a 45 mm case, water-resistant to 100 metres. Its red sapphire crystal leaves the gears of the chronometer on show. A highly limited edition for supersonic watchmaking enthusiasts. Ref. BR0192-10TH-CE
BR 01 10th Anniversary Movement BR-CAL.302. Mechanical self-winding Functions Hours, minutes, seconds Case Matt black ceramic, diameter: 46 mm, steel case back with the inscription “10th Anniversary” Dial Stamped black, hands, numerals and hour-markers covered with a white photo-luminescent coating (Superluminova®) and “10th Anniversary” inscription Strap Rubber Price CHF 4600.– Limited edition of 500 pieces Ref. BRX1-CE-TI-RED
BR X1 Skeleton Chronograph Movement BR-CAL. 313. Mechanical self-winding, skeleton chronograph Functions Hours, minutes and small seconds, skeletonised date at 6 o’clock, chronograph with 60-second and 30-minute accumulators Case Diameter: 45 mm, titanium and ceramic with rubber inserts, toggle push-pieces, sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment, case-back with opening in tinted sapphire crystal, centred on the balance Dial Grey-tinted mineral glass, metal skeletonised Superluminova®-filled hours and minutes hands, appliqué metal hour-markers with Superluminova® inserts Strap Woven black rubber Price CHF 18,200.– Limited edition of 250 pieces
Blancpain at the very peak of its expertise
t’s a discreet new addition to Blancpain's Villeret Collection: a model featuring a large date window at 6 o’clock, with an instant date change at midnight. This complication is housed in a 40 mm steel case with a white dial of refined, understated elegance. With its unabashedly sporty look, the Fifty Fathoms Collection is the image of the archetypal diver's watch. Launched in 2013, the Bathyscaphe model with 3 hands is this year presented in a black ceramic version. Ceramic case and bezel, deep black dial, sapphire case-back revealing its Manufacture calibre guaranteeing a five-day power reserve: these features will seduce the diver within you.
Villeret, Grand Date Movement Self-winding calibre 6950, power reserve: 72 hours Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date Case Steel, diameter: 40 mm, sapphire case-back, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial White Strap Black alligator leather Price CHF 10,900.– Ref. 5000-0130-B52 A
Fifty Fathoms, Bathyscaphe Movement Self-winding calibre 1315, power reserve: 120 hours Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date Case Satin-brushed black ceramic, diameter: 43.6 mm, sapphire case-back, water-resistant to 30 bar Dial Black Bezel Unidirectional satin-brushed black ceramic bezel with ceramic insert and Liquidmetal® hour-markers Strap Black sail-canvas Price CHF 12,000.–
Watchmaking virtuosity taken to sublime heights
irtuoso: the very name proclaims its ambition. The Bovet in-house calibre offers five days of autonomy and a double display. One face shows the hours, minutes and seconds and reveals the movement. On the other, the seconds hand appears again: the seconds are thus shown on both sides and share the same axis, even though their direction of rotation is reversed. On this face, however, jumping hours and retrograde minutes are displayed; here simplicity is synonymous with virtuosity. As for the new Miss Audrey model, the 2015 version is clad in blue and brown. Its guilloché dial reveals all the nuances of a timepiece that can be converted into a wristwatch, a table clock or a pendant necklace.
Amadeo® Fleurier VIRTUOSO V Movement 13BM11AIHSMR, hand-wound movement Functions Jumping hours, retrograde minutes, double coaxial seconds, reversed hand-fitting, power reserve indicator Case Amadeo® convertible, 18K red gold. Dial White lacquered with Roman applied numerals Strap Full skin alligator Price CHF 70,200.– Limited edition of 100 timepieces Ref. AS36005-SD12
Amadeo® Fleurier 36 “Miss Audrey” Movement 11BA15, self-winding mechanical movement Functions Hours, minutes Case Amadeo® convertible, stainless steel Dial Blue guilloché set with four diamond indexes Strap Synthetic satin with calfskin lining Price CHF 21,060.– ~ 0.99 ct
Ten years of Tradition and a Marine engraved with gold waves
his Tradition is like no other. It is with this model that Breguet celebrates the tenth anniversary of this collection whose vocation is to enhance, on the dial side, the beauty of its manufacture movement. The individually numbered 7097 presents a remarkable composition on its 40 mm case, based on the parallel nature of its bridges and the presence of its second retrograde at 10 o’clock. As for the new Marine 5827, its delicate guilloché dial features an elegantly sporty chronograph with date, served by a pink gold case whose push pieces are sculpted in the shape of a wave.
Tradition Automatique Seconde Rétrograde Movement 505 SR1, mechanical self-winding Functions Retrograde seconds Case White gold Dial Silver-coloured 18-carat gold, hand guilloché work Strap Leather Price CHF 32,700.– Ref. 5827BR/12/5ZU
Marine Chronographe Movement 583Q, mechanical self-winding Functions Chronograph with minutes and seconds totaliser at the centre, hours and date counter at 6 o’clock, small seconds at 9 o’clock Case Pink gold Dial Silver-coloured 18-carat gold, hand guilloché work Strap Rubber Price CHF 30,700.–
The winged B celebrates a century of aero-watchmaking innovations
915: Breitling invented the first independent pushpiece. The invention changed the face of this complication dedicated to pilots and Breitling’s “Instruments for professionals” were born. Today, the Manufacture is reissuing the Transocean Chronograph 1915 and equipping it with an in-house calibre in a fascinating series of just 1915 pieces. The Chronoliner is a worthy heir. This pilot watch with Milanese mesh concentrates the essence of Breitling: GMT, date and certified chronometer. Its 46 mm diameter and its black and ivory tones guarantee perfect readability even in the darkness of the cockpit.
Transocean Chronograph 1915 Movement Breitling Manufacture Calibre B14, hand-wound mechanical movement, power reserve: min. 70 hours Functions Single push-piece 1/4-second chronograph and 30-minute totaliser, calendar, small seconds and 30-minute counter Case Steel, diameter: 43 mm, large Arabic numerals, batonshaped hands accentuated by a luminescent coating with patina effect, convex sapphire crystal, glareproofed on both sides, water-resistant to 100 m Dial Silver-coloured in two zones, Mercury silver strap Leather or Ocean Classic metal (steel mesh) Price CHF 8400.– Limited edition of 1915 pieces "100e anniversaire 1915–2015" (100th anniversary 1915-2015) engraving Ref. Y2431012/BE10/152A
Chronoliner Movement Breitling Calibre 24, officially chronometer-certified by the COSC, high-frequency self-winding Functions 1/4-second chronograph, 30-minute and 12-hour totalisers, 2nd time zone in 24-hour mode on the dial and 3rd time zone on the bezel, calendar Case Steel with ceramic bidirectional rotating bezel, diameter: 46 mm, cambered sapphire crystal, glareproofed on both sides, water-resistant to 100 m Dial White luminescent hour-markers that stand out against a black background Bracelet Ocean Classic metal (steel mesh) or Navitimer Price CHF 7070.–
Cartier sculpts new forms and explores the ocean depths
reated in 2015, the Clé de Cartier collection, with its sculpted forms half rounded and half cushionshaped, is sure to make its mark. Its 35 mm pink gold case, set with diamonds, features a groundbreaking key-shaped movable crown, a new mechanical sensation at your fingertips. These two features form the quintessential Cartier combination of elegance and creativity. The Calibre de Cartier Diver is the Manufacture’s very first diver’s watch. With its sporty 42 mm diameter and water-resistant to 300 metres, it features the oversized XII numeral so dear to Cartier's heart.
Clé de Cartier, pink gold, 35 mm, case set with diamonds Movement Manufacture mechanical movement with self-winding calibre 1847 MC, power reserve: 42 hours Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds, date Case 18K pink gold, set with diamonds, diameter: 35 mm, sapphire crystal and case-back Dial Sunray effect, flinqué Strap Pink gold Price CHF 40,000.– Clé de Cartier watches are also available in 31 mm and 40 mm Ref. W2CA0004
Calibre de Cartier Diver, 42 mm, adlc-coated case with pink gold ring Movement Manufacture mechanical movement with self-winding calibre 1904-PS MC, power reserve: 48 hours Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds, date Case ADLC-coated steel, diameter: 42 mm, faceted crown in 18K pink gold set with a faceted synthetic spinel, sapphire crystal, water-resistant at 30 bar Dial Partly snailed black dial with Super-LumiNova indicators Strap Rubber Price CHF 10,500.–
The Première Rock Pastel and the J12 Collector in very limited editions
n edgy triple row chain of leather and steel contrasts with the mother-of-pearl dial and pastel pink colour, so elegant and discreet. The latest creation from CHANEL is aptly named: Première Rock Pastel. This daring combination bears the hallmark of a brand that, even over a century after its creation, continues to produce innovative designs for modern women. The latest J12, a limited edition 38 mm diameter model, combines high-tech* ceramic with a dial in a pared-down palette of pink and white. This Collector demonstrates the prominence of CHANEL’S scratch resistant ceramic.
Première Rock Pastel Movement High precision quartz movement Functions Hours and minutes Case Steel, steel cabochon crown, water resistant to 3 bar Dial White mother-of-pearl dial Strap Triple row steel bracelet interwoven with nude leather Price CHF 4300.– Limited edition of 1000 pieces Ref. H4468
J12 Collector Movement Self winding mechanical movement, power reserve: 42 hours Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date Case White high-tech* ceramic and steel, screw down crown, diameter: 38 mm, water resistant to 20 bar Dial Unidirectional rotating bezel, indicators on the flange with a pastel pink seconds hand Strap White high-tech* ceramic and steel, steel triple folding buckle Price CHF 5150.– Limited edition of 1200 pieces Also available in 33 mm (quartz) *high technology, highly scratch resistant material
Vanguard Lady, a cutting-edge timepiece for the modern, liberated woman
lassic? Sporty? Elegant? Brazen? Probably all of the above, the new Vanguard Lady is firmly irreverent. Available in quartz or self-winding versions, it presents large appliqué relief numerals in a radiant pink colour, emphasised by a sun-stamped dial that bathes them in an incredible light. A true piece of high watchmaking, hand-finished, it comes with a new pink strap combining leather with rubber. The Vanguard Chrono is a sporty-chic men’s watch whose convex case hugs the shape of the wrist. Its anthracite and gold tones lend it modern elegance and optimum readability. Its automatic movement, decorated according to watchmaking tradition, provides two days’ power reserve. Ref. 32 QZ AC RS
Vanguard Lady steel Movement Quartz Functions Hours and minutes Case Steel Dial Sun-stamped dial with appliqué numerals in feminine colours Strap Rubber with alligator Price CHF 6800.– Ref. 32 SC AT FO AC RS
Vanguard Lady Automatic (no image) Movement Self-winding Functions Hours, minutes and seconds Case Steel Dial Sun-stamped dial with appliqué numerals in feminine colours, seconds hand Strap Rubber with alligator Price CHF 7800.– Ref. 45V CCDT TTBR 5N
Vanguard Chrono Movement Self-winding, calibre FM 7000, power reserve: 48 hours Functions Push-piece at 2 o’clock: chronograph start-stop, push-piece at 4 o’clock: chronograph return to zero, corrector at 10 o’clock: date corrector Case Cintrée Curvex: brushed titanium with pink-gold inserts Dial Brushed titanium with appliqué numerals Strap Rubber (bottom) with leather (top), folding buckle Price CHF 15,200.–
A young lady of 70 raised to the ranks of watchmaking icon
n 1945, it was one of the most advanced pieces of its time. Seventy years later, it remains surprisingly modern. The anniversary edition of this Vintage 1945 celebrates its timeless elegance: a convex profile, a combination of gold and silver tones, large shafts and Art Deco hour-markers at the service of a grande dame who remains at the peak of her performance. The feminine version is adorned with chocolate and taupe tones whose depth contrasts with the brilliance of the 42 diamonds that sparkle at its centre. The hand-curved hands recall the curve of the case, in which beats a self-winding calibre with date.
Vintage 1945 – 70th anniversary model Movement Girard-Perregaux GP03300-0051, self-winding mechanical movement Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds Case Gold and steel case and pink gold bezel Dial Opaline with beige varnish Strap Alligator strap with ecru stitching Price CHF 13,400.– Year: 70th anniversary Limited edition of 100 pieces Vertical satin-finished case-back engraved with commemorative anniversary logo Ref. 25860D11A1A2-CKBA
Vintage 1945 – Lady Movement Girard-Perregaux GP02700-0003, self-winding mechanical movement Functions Hours, minutes, date Case Steel case, gem-set Dial Two-tone, brown lacquer, 42 brilliant-cut diamonds, ~ 0.105 ct Strap Chocolate alligator strap, grey alligator lining with grey stitching Price CHF 13,800.– 72 brilliant-cut diamonds, ~ 0.655 ct
Greubel Forsey A whirlwind of watch variations for the well-informed collector
rom the moment it was first presented, it was the ultimate GMT model. With its limited edition of only 22 pieces, this new platinum version is even more so. Displaying a second time zone, together with both terrestrial and universal time and summer time, the Greubel Forsey GMT watch is both technical and legible, representing a model to be followed and the collectors’ ultimate Holy Grail. For its part, the Double Tourbillon Asymétrique model embodies a certain sobriety, with its new exterior in different shades of white gold. These tones embellish the three-dimensional structure of this watch, which is powered by a calibre equipped with a three-day power reserve. Ref. 91006233
Platinum GMT, pink gold with pvd treatment Movement Mechanical hand-wound Manufacture calibre GF05, power reserve: 72 hours, patented tourbillon Functions 2nd time zone GMT display, 24-second tourbillon, titanium rotating globe with universal time display, 24 time zone worldtime display, summer time display, indicator of cities applying summer time, day-and-night indicator, hours, minutes, small seconds, GMT pusher, equatorial lateral window Case Platinum 950 with asymmetrical convex sapphire crystal, diameter: 43.5 mm, hand-engraved individual number on the case-back, water-resistant to 30 m Dial Gold base, frosted, black-chrome treatment, hour circle: White gold Strap Hand-sewn black alligator leather Price CHF 594,000.– Sole limited edition of 22 pieces 50 olived-domed jewels in gold chatons Ref. 91001539
Double Tourbillon Asymétrique, white gold Movement Mechanical hand-wound Manufacture calibre GF02a2, power reserve: 72 hours, patented tourbillon Functions Hours, minutes and small seconds, Double Tourbillon 30°, sector indicator by disk, power reserve: 72 hours Case White gold, diameter: 43.5 mm, asymmetric sapphire crystal and case-back, water-resistant to 30 m. Dial Black oxidised gold, gold plate engraved with individual number, “Greubel Forsey” gold applique Strap Hand-sewn black alligator leather Price CHF 529,200.– Sole limited edition: 11 pieces in 5N red gold and 11 pieces in white gold
Harry Winston Pillars of style between light and shadow
he Ocean Triple Retrograde Chronograph embodies the modern renewal of the men’s watch. Its chronograph, all of whose displays are retrograde, as well as its Zalium® case and Shuriken-shaped small seconds are at the cutting edge of designer, sporty watchmaking. This 44 mm piece is aimed at those who venture far from shore... and from convention. As for women’s watches, slate is one of Harry Winston’s favourite themes. This Midnight Monochrome is the most luminous of all, set with over 100 diamonds whose reflections highlight the softness of the satin and pink gold.
Ocean Triple Retrograde Chronograph Black Zalium Movement Mechanical self-winding Functions Off-centred hours and minutes, retrograde chronograph with hours, minutes and seconds, Shuriken (small seconds) Case Zalium® with DLC coating, satin finish, 44 mm Dial Sapphire openwork dial revealing a ruthenium treated movement decorated with Côtes de Genève, black Superluminova® hands Strap Black rubber or alligator, folding clasp in Zalium® with black DLC coating Price CHF 35,800.– Year 2012 Ref. MIDQHM39RR004
Harry Winston Midnight Monochrome Movement Quartz Functions Hours, minutes Case 18K pink gold, 39 mm Dial Slate effect, 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock hour-markers set with 3 brilliant-cut diamonds each (approximately 0.025 ct) Strap Satin Price CHF 21,000.– 103 brilliant-cut diamonds 0.95 ct Year 2013
An elegant new duo for Hermès
ermès presents an entirely new collection cultivating taste and elegance. At once classic and contemporary, Slim d’Hermès is presented here in a 32 mm steel version. To mark the hours, graphic designer Philippe Apeloig has designed lightly traced numerals especially for Hermès. Subtle guilloché work highlights the delicacy of the refined dial. In the brand’s emblematic line, Arceau is fitted with a Hermès manufacture movement with a Petite Lune version at 10 o’clock where date and moon answer each another. Diamonds and mother-of-pearl cast their light on one another like an invitation to experience the dream of creative, quality watchmaking.
Slim d’Hermès 32 mm Movement Quartz Functions Hours, minutes Case Steel Dial Opaline silvered Strap White grained calfskin Price CHF 2700.– Ref. 041034WW00
Arceau Petite Lune Manufacture Movement Hermès H1837 Manufacture Functions Hours, minutes, date at 6 o’clock, moon phase between 10 o’clock and 11 o’clock Case Gem-set steel Dial Natural white mother-of-pearl Strap Smooth ultraviolet alligator Prix CHF 14,900.–
Hublot: reinventing Swiss watchmaking with panache
he Big Bang Unico Magic Gold watch is the culmination of 10 years of Hublot fusion. It combines the in-house Unico movement with a bezel in Magic Gold, Hublot's very own in-house unscratchable gold. With its 45 mm diameter, this timepiece is both a status symbol and a concentration of high technology. The Classic Fusion Blue Titanium watch follows the same path. More sober, it blends the codes of classic watchmaking with the modernity of a blue titanium dial. With its intense, electric impact, it will delight connoisseurs of timepieces that diverge from established norms.
Big Bang 45mm Unico Ceramico Magic Gold Movement Self-winding mechanical calibre UNICO HUB 1242, with black PVD treatment, developed and manufactured in-house by Hublot, power reserve: 72 hours Functions Dark grey date window at 3 o'clock. Oscillating weight, black PVD coating Case Micro-blasted black ceramic with polished sides, diameter: 45 mm, sapphire crystal with interior/exterior anti-reflective treatment with gilt Hublot logo Dial Matt black varnished skeleton, red varnished minute track, satin-finished gilt counter ring at 9 o'clock (small seconds), satin-finished gilt counter ring at 3 o'clock (chronograph minutes), gilt plated hour-markers with black SuperluminovaTM Strap Structured and ribbed black rubber, interchangeable system Price CHF 22,900.– Ref. 511.NX.7170.LR
Classic Fusion 45mm Blue titanium Movement Self-winding movement, calibre HUB 1112 Functions Rectangular date window at 3 o'clock, oscillating weight designed by Hublot, black tungsten coating, perforated rotor, power reserve: 42 hours Case “Classic Fusion” in titanium, 45 mm diameter, satinfinished titanium and sapphire, anti-reflective treatment on the internal face of the crystal Dial Satin-finished galvanised blue sunray-effect dial Strap Thin steel folding clasp Price CHF 7300.–
Jaeger-LeCoultre A dual offer of timeless elegance for her and for him
aeger-LeCoultre does not reinterpret watchmaking history; rather, it has written much of it itself. The Master Ultra Thin Date is the proof of this creative verve. For nearly 50 years now, the Manufacture has been producing this model, constantly adapting it to its time. A model of slenderness (with a thickness of only 7.5 mm), of legibility and of design, with its dauphine hands and its discreet case with a diameter of 40 mm, it embodies all the timeless elegance of Jaeger-LeCoultre. The Rendez-Vous watch follows the same path: one of the Manufacture's best-selling models, it has made a place for itself in record time on the wrists of women who want a contemporary design that is perfectly legible and as discreet as it is refined. The new Rendez-Vous Date watch with its mother-of-pearl dial will seduce a female clientèle seeking the true authenticity of Swiss watchmaking.
Master Ultra Thin Date 40 steel watch Movement Self-winding calibre 899 Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date Case Steel, diameter: 40 mm, sapphire case-back Dial Silver-toned Strap Alligator leather, folding clasp Price CHF 7750.– Ref. Q3548490
Rendez-Vous Date steel Movement Self-winding calibre 899 Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date Case Steel, diameter: 37.5 mm, sapphire case-back Dial Mother-of-pearl, diamonds Strap Alligator leather, folding clasp Price CHF 10,200.–
Jaermann & Stübi An elegant watch duo to grace the fairways
or 2015, the Stroke Play, the only watch in the world designed specially for golfers, has adopted a new deep blue dial. Its centre is decorated with a Clous de Paris motif that acts as a background to the counters indicating strokes, holes and total score. This unique, contemporary Stroke Play model will continue to shine away from the fairway at club house dinners and receptions. Meanwhile, in a reference to the letter “L” in “golf”, 99 ladies will have the chance to play to the rhythm of the Queen of Golf model, with its pink mother-of-pearl dial and gem-set bezel. Its golfing functions are here housed in a new, extremely feminine 38 mm case.
Stroke Play – New Blue Clous de Paris Dial Movement A10 Functions Golf counter JS02 Case Stainless steel with brushed/polished finish, diameter: 44 mm, sapphire glass, rotating bezel Dial Blue Clous de Paris motif Strap Blue alligator leather, folding buckle Price CHF 8900.– Ref. QG UICC
Queen of Golf – Union for international Cancer Control “UICC” Movement A10 Functions Golf counter JS04 Case Stainless steel with brushed/polished finish, diameter: 38 mm, sapphire glass Dial Pink mother-of-pearl, bezel set with diamonds and sapphires weighing 2.75 ct, customised UICC logo Strap Raspberry leather, pin buckle Price CHF 9950.– Limited edition of 99 pieces 80 jewels
Announcing the arrival of the Independent (or “Deadbeat”) Seconds
t first, outside observers may not notice anything new about it. Watch connoisseurs, however, will recognise something of a revolution: this Independent Seconds watch has acquired a seconds hand which is central and independent, or “deadbeat”, following a rhythm of one jump per second. This complication, as entertaining as it is technically sophisticated, has led to the need to redesign the dial so that the date is now at 6 o’clock. Traditional in appearance only, this limited edition marks a turning-point in the brand’s history. The Eclipse, with its Moon Phase display at 6 o’clock, is here distinguished by its aventurine dial reproducing the night sky. A full calendar watch with day, date and month indications, The Eclipse with its 39 mm case is a model of balance designed as an elegant companion to everyday life.
Independent (or “Deadbeat”) Seconds Movement Jaquet Droz 2695SMR, self-winding mechanical movement, single barrel, 40-hour power reserve Functions Off-centred hours and minutes, central independent (“deadbeat”) seconds, retrograde date display with hand at 6 o’clock Case Red gold, diameter: 43 mm, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial Ivory Grand Feu enamel Strap Hand-rolled-edge black alligator leather Price CHF 31,350.–
Limited edition of 88 pieces 18 ct, 34 jewels
The Eclipse Aventurine 39 mm Movement Jaquet Droz 6553L2, self-winding mechanical movement, double barrel, silicon balance wheel, retrograde moon phases, 68-hour power reserve Functions Centred hours, minutes and date, day and month at 12 o’clock, moon phase at 6 o’clock Case Steel case set with 176 diamonds (1.28 ct) and rhodium-plated appliques, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial Aventurine, 8 star appliques and 1 moon applique with rhodium treatment Strap Hand-rolled-edge dark blue alligator leather Price CHF 23,550.–
From horses to family doctors, Longines revisits a century
aving a precise timepiece could once have been vital! The family doctors’ pulsometer, designed to measure the pulse, is today reissued by Longines in a 40 mm version that remains faithful to its historic vocation. Single push-piece chronograph with blued hollowapple hands, white lacquered dial: The Longines Pulsometer Chronograph evokes beautiful turn-ofthe-century watchmaking. As for women’s watches, a new line celebrates Longines’ commitment to equestrian sports. The 30 mm piece, bearing two intertwined arches, declares its femininity through a diamond case and hour-markers and a mother-of-pearl dial.
The Longines Pulsometer Chronograph Movement Self-winding mechanical movement with single push-piece and column wheel chronograph mechanism, calibre L788.2 (ETA A08.L11), power reserve: 54 hours Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds at 9 o’clock, date at 6 o’clock, pulsometric scale, chronograph: central 60-second hand and 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock Case Steel, diameter: 40 mm, single push-piece integrated into the crown, transparent case-back, sapphire crystal with several layers of anti-reflective treatment, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial White lacquer, 9 painted black Arabic numerals, red pulsometric scale Strap Brown alligator Price CHF 4000.– Ref. L126.96.36.199.2
The Longines Equestrian Collection Movement Quartz L152.3 (ETA E61.111) Functions Hours, minutes, seconds and date at 3 o’ clock Case Steel set with diamonds, diameter: 30 mm, round with two intertwined arches, in stainless steel, sapphire crystal with several layers of anti-reflective treatment, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial White mother-of-pearl, 12 diamond hour-markers Strap Brown leather (calfskin) Price CHF 3700.–
From the Earth to the Moon, Omega toys with light and shadow
lack for the dark side, brown for the vintage side: this tenebrous Speedmaster has never been so close to the spirit of the pioneers of 1969. Today it uses the very best technology, with the brand’s own coaxial movement and a ceramic bezel. Its black hands reflect the brown ones, which are reminiscent of the leather strap. The material effects continue with the Constellation Pluma whose dial evokes a silky feather. Its coral hue, combined with the softness of a red gold bezel, breathes the gentleness of a summer’s day onto its discreet 27 mm case with a bezel adorned with diamonds.
Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon “Vintage Black” Movement OMEGA Co-Axial 9300 Functions Chronograph Case Ceramic Dial Black ceramic Strap Brown leather Price CHF 11,700.– Ref. 188.8.131.52.55.006
Constellation Pluma Movement OMEGA Co-Axial 8520, mechanical Functions Chronometer Case Steel Dial Unique, mother-of-pearl adorned with 11 hour-markers in 0.05-carat diamonds on 18-carat gold chatons, undulations are traced over the dial between the two emblematic logos, 0.5-carat bezel strap Stainless steel links and 18-carat red gold bars Price CHF 10,250.–
The dark mysterious beauty of the ocean depths
ltra-technical but with a classic design: once again, Panerai breaks down the boundaries of style. The Flyback complication allows users to stop a chronograph and reset it to zero with a single press of the push-piece. The central minutes and seconds hands leave ample space on the dial for the date. The entire timepiece is clad in matt black ceramic, a high-technology material that makes this watch exceptionally resistant to scratching, corrosion and high temperatures. For its part, the Radiomir 8 Days Acciaio can retain its autonomy for a whole week thanks to its eight-day power reserve. Its ultra-legible dial makes it an essential companion for your everyday activities.
Luminor 1950 3 Days Chrono Flyback Automatic Ceramica Movement Self-winding mechanical Panerai P.9100 calibre, power reserve: 72 hours Functions Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph with flyback function, seconds reset Case Black ceramic, diameter: 44 mm, water-resistant to 10 bar Dial Black with luminous Arabic numerals and hour markers Strap Assolutamente brown calfskin, beige topstitching Price CHF 13,800.â€“ Ref. PAM00610
Radiomir 8 Days Acciaio 45 mm Movement Hand-wound mechanical Panerai P.5000 calibre, power reserve: 8 days Functions Hours, minutes Case Diameter: 45 mm, polished steel Dial Black with green luminous Arabic numerals and hour markers Strap Black calfskin, black topstitching Price CHF 6000.â€“
A dazzling duo embodying the haute horlogerie of Geneva
his model is both a tribute to tradition and a homage to modernity. Behind its contemporary dial, with a hand-crafted guilloché pattern, small seconds at 9 o’clock and Roman numerals in pink gold, beats a Poinçon de Genève certified self-winding movement. With its intense, hypnotic appearance and strong personality, the Hommage watch will seduce the discerning collector. The new Velvet gem-set model in pink gold will be admired for its curves and the convex profile of its hourmarkers. Its twin rows of diamonds surround a 36 mm case secured by a deliciously feminine pink strap. Once again, the Poinçon de Genève hallmark certifies the perfection of its self-winding movement with its two-day power reserve. Ref. RDDBHO565
Hommage Automatic in Pink Gold Movement Calibre RD620 automatic movement Functions Self-winding mechanism Case 42 mm, pink gold Dial Guilloché motif, applied Roman numerals in pink gold, circular small seconds counter at 9 o’clock, silver-toned and anthracite background, black and white transfers, anthracite grey flange, white minute circle, transferred “Poinçon de Genève” and “Swiss made” inscriptions and Roger Dubuis logo, appliques in pink gold Strap Genuine brown alligator leather Price CHF 27,000.– Stamped with the Poinçon de Genève Ref. RDDBVE0033
Velvet Automatic in Pink Gold Movement Calibre RD821 automatic movement Functions Self-winding mechanism Case 36 mm, pink gold Dial White dial, transferred black Roman numerals, pink gold thread, applied mirror-polished Roman numerals in pink gold at 6 and 12 o’clock, flange set with 64 brilliant-cut diamonds (0.24 ct) Strap Genuine cherry-pink alligator leather Price CHF 19,700.– ~ 0.24 ct Stamped with the Poinçon de Genève
Ulysse Nardin The power of a marine watch worn on the wrist
he new Marine Chronograph Manufacture adopts the codes of marine instruments: a 43 mm case for excellent readability, a fluted bezel and a screwdown crown guaranteeing perfect water resistance. The gold and blue tones on its dial beat to the rhythm of a manufacture calibre with silicon escapement. Sailing alongside it is the Starry Night: its unidirectional bezel, characteristic of the collection, as well as the strap appear submerged by the powerful waves of its guilloché dial where 12 diamonds sparkle like sea spray. Sporty and chic, it is water-resistant to 100 metres and is worn on a rubber strap.
Ref. 1503-150LE-3/43-Balt V1
Marine Chronograph Manufacture Movement Calibre UN-150, self-winding Functions Chronograph with central seconds hand, small seconds counter at 9 o’clock , 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock, 12-hour counter at 6 o’clock, date between 4 and 5 o’clock Case Titanium/stainless steel Dial Roman numeral hour-markers in 18-carat rose gold Strap Rubber with titanium elements and folding clasp Price CHF 12,300.–
Limited edition of 250 pieces
Lady Diver Starry Night Movement Calibre UN-815, self-winding Functions Hours, minutes, seconds, date positioned at 6 o’ clock Case 18-carat rose gold, diameter: 40 mm Dial White mother-of-pearl Strap Exclusive rubber strap and folding clasp Price CHF 26,300.– 71 diamonds, 0.7 ct
British tweed, tropical wood and armour: elusive Urwerk!
he UR-110 EastWood is remarkable not only for its technology, but also its external parts: British tweed and African and Indonesian woods. This exotic attire belongs to the ultimate recital of the UR-110, its curtain call after 150 copies. The UR-105 TA promises to enjoy just as long a career. It is not round, it has no hands and it is Urwerk’s latest creation. Its satellite display has been entirely reworked. Its invisible carousel performs the invisible ballet of the gentle turning of the hours. Its “All Black” titanium and steel coat gives it elegant and technical intensity, like a suit of armour invincible against the assaults of time.
EastWood Red Ebony Movement Mechanical self-winding calibre UR-9.01, power reserve: 39 hours Functions Satellite complication with rotating hour modules mounted on planetary gears. Control Board: day/night indicator, “Oil Change”, 60-second counter Case Grade 5 titanium with bezel made of precious wood, dimensions: 47 mm × 51 mm, sapphire crystal Dial Rhodium-plated and black Strap Timothy Everest tweed selection Price CHF 114,480.–
Limited edition of 5 pieces: “Red Ebony” (Ethical production, country of origin: South Africa)
Ref. UR-105 TA
All Black Movement Functions Case Dial
Mechanical self-winding calibre UR-5.02, regulated by double turbines, power reserve: 48 hours Satellite hour display and winding control lever Black PVD titanium case and black PVD steel bezel Black Black baltimora CHF 69,120.– Limited edition of 100 pieces
Vacheron Constantin A historic new benchmark in Geneva watchmaking elegance
ew collection, new Manufacture calibre, new shape: the Harmony watch is the Vacheron Constantin revelation of 2015, and probably one of the most perfect cushion-shaped watches ever produced. A monopusher chronograph in the grand watchmaking tradition, it is graduated by a pulsometric scale equipped with a power reserve. The result of seven years of research and development, this first Harmony model is already making a name for itself as a high-prestige collector’s piece. For its part, the Patrimony Lady watch prolongs Vacheron Constantin’s historic heritage of elegance. Its discreet 36 mm case shines with 48 diamonds that embellish its majestic elegance.
Harmony Monopusher Chronograph, pink gold Movement Mechanical hand-wound calibre 3300, developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin, power reserve: approx. 65 hours Functions Indications of hours and minutes, small seconds at 9 o’clock, monopusher chronograph (with 45-minute counter at 3 o’clock), pulsometric scale, power reserve indication Case 18K 5N pink gold, dimensions: 42 mm x 52 mm, transparent case-back with sapphire crystal, water-resistant to 3 bars Dial Opaline silver-toned, blue-painted Arabic numerals and red-painted pulsometric scale Strap Hand-sewn brown Alligator Mississippiensis leather Price CHF 73,500.–
Limited edition of 260 individually numbered pieces, “No. X/260” and “260th Anniversary” engraved on the case-back
Patrimony Lady, automatic Movement Self-winding mechanical calibre 2450 Q6, developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin, power reserve: approx. 40 hours Functions Hours, minutes, central seconds, date Case 18K white gold/18K 5N pink gold, gem-set bezel (68 round-cut diamonds), gem-set crown (1 diamond), diameter: 36.5 mm, transparent case-back with sapphire crystal, water-resistant to 3 bar Dial Opaline silver-toned, convex external section, gem-set minute circle (48 round-cut diamonds), applied hour-markers in 18K white gold/ 18K 5N pink gold Strap Hand-sewn alligator leather Price CHF 38,700.–
Mechanical subtlety from a watchmaker for aesthetes
ulcain, watch manufacturer since 1858, produces timepieces for aesthetes seeking elegant creations that go beyond established conventions. This limited “Heiner Lauterbach” edition of 99 pieces, a tribute to the German actor, is distinguished by its dial in motherof-pearl, a finish that unusually denotes here a decidedly masculine style. This Cricket watch is equipped with an alarm function, which has been a defining mechanical feature of the brand for nearly 70 years. This same complication is today also housed in the new Aviator Cricket model here proposed with a matt black dial, and a date and second time zone display – a watch clearly conceived for the frequent traveller!
Vulcain 50s Presidents’ Watch for Heiner Lauterbach Limited Edition Movement Vulcain V-10 Cricket Calibre Functions Central hours, minutes, seconds, alarm Case Two-tone 18K 5N pink gold and 316L steel Dial Mother-of-pearl with pink hour-markers Strap Honey-coloured Louisiana alligator leather, steel pin buckle Price CHF 9550.– Limited edition of 99 pieces Ref. 110163A07.BFC102
Aviator Instrument Cricket 42 mm Matt Black Dial Movement Vulcain V-11 Cricket Calibre Functions Central hours, minutes, seconds, alarm, date in window at 6 o’clock, universal time on a 24-hour basis, adjusted via screwed-down crown at 4 o’clock Case Steel 316L Dial Black Strap Black leather, folding clasp Price CHF 4950.–
Buben&Zörweg The ultimate experience in watchmaking devotion
ltimate, absolute: words alone cannot describe the work of Buben&Zörweg. The duo have joined forces with Erwin Sattler to create the Grande Précision, at the heart of which beats a constant force escapement clock. This masterpiece of fine craftsmanship incorporates a mini-bar, a cigar cellar and 48 watch winders. The Titan guarantees total security with a 730-kilo safe. Eighteen watch winders are visible, while a secret button reveals 18 more. The options, ranging from a temperature-controlled cigar cellar to an integrated HiFi system, are so numerous that the Titan is a true tailormade work of art.
Ref. 15 0016 803
Grande Précision MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS • 2,030 x 870 x 380 mm, 180 kg, mains operation TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICS • 48 or 32 TIME MOVER® and a humidor with a German electronic humidifying system and a bar • Additional storage for watches and jewellery in 8 drawers • 2 sliding shelves • Metal framed viewing windows on the side • Hand-polished stainless steel inlay • Interior in fine black velvet • State-of-the-art LED lighting technology with fading function • Amiran® anti-reflective glass • German security lock • High-quality German craftsmanship AN EXCEPTIONALLY REFINED TIMEPIECE • Classica Secunda 1995 of the manufacture Erwin Sattler • 30-day precision movement with maintaining power, constant force through chain and fusee, pulley ball-bearing mounted; 3,200 gram drive weight • Compensation pendulum (temperature and air pressure) • Glashütte construction • Pendulum made from annealed Superinvar • 11 jewel gears and escapement stored in gold-plated screwed chatons • Handmade, blued steel hands • Rhodium-plated dial with sunray finish • Deadbeat escapement • Gold-plated pallet body with agate pallets Price: CHF 137,800.– Ref. 14 0073 606
MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS • 1,260 x 710 x 800 mm, 730 kg, mains operation TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICS • High-security safe with VdS IV (German security certification) • High-security PAXOS® compact locking system • Connectible to the home alarm system • Patented wall safe in lightweight RELASTAN® • Unique “Pull & Slide” opening mechanism with an extendible interior • Double-sided TIME MOVER® carousel for 36 watches (18 on each side) • 2 storage drawers (for men’s accessories and watches, for details see page 181) • Electro-mechanical rotating mechanism with secret button • BUBEN & ZÖRWEG signature clock with stainless steel bezel • Optional BUBEN & ZÖRWEG HiFi system Monolog 10 with streaming and Bluetooth functions • State-of-the-art LED lighting technology with fading function • Optional humidifier with a German electronic humidifying system • High-quality German craftsmanship Price: CHF 195,300.–
Refined, discreet luxury at the service of technological excellence
lease note, very limited edition: 280 pieces. The new Aster Stingray Blue is the first model from this authentic British manufacturer to be clad in stingray shagreen. More resistant than traditional leather, the origins of this covering, in an intense blue colour, go back to the court of King Louis XV. It remains the stamp of refined luxury at the service of a smartphone at the cutting edge of technology, whose structure is crafted from titanium. The understated S Signature is incorporated in deep black. Combining steel, leather and ceramic, this new Vertu reveals none of its power through its veritable dinner jacket of intense black.
Aster Stingray Blue LE MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS • Blue stingray leather • Limited edition of 280 pieces • Brushed and polished titanium edges • Back in brushed titanium covered with black polished PVD • Chassis and sound bar in polished titanium with black PVD coating • Length: 143.4 mm, width: 69 mm, thickness: 11.2 mm • Weight: 193 g TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS • Operating system Android™ 4.4 (KitKat) BATTERY • Integrated rechargeable Li-ion 2 275 mAh battery • Battery life in communication: up to 15 hours and 30 min. (WCDMA) • Battery life in sleep mode: up to 380 hours EXCLUSIVE SERVICES¹ •6-month subscription to the Vertu Concierge Classic service •Vertu Life •Vertu Certainty •www.vertu.me ¹ Certain services depend on the location, network and/or service Price: CHF 8200.– Ref. 600692-001-01
Signature S DLC MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS • Polished stainless steel with black DLC (Diamond-like Carbon) coating • Black leather • Polished black ceramic pillow, back pillow and battery cover • High-resolution LCD display with sapphire crystal • Characteristics hidden until switched on • Diamond-cut sapphire keys • High-fidelity 11 x 15 mm loudspeaker with dual sound ports • Exclusive ring tones and alerts played by the London Symphony Orchestra TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS • Operating system: Series 40 BATTERY • Removable Li-ion battery • Battery life in communication: up to 5 hours and 30 min. (GSM), up to 3 hours (WCDMA) • Battery life in sleep mode: up to 300 hours EXCLUSIVE SERVICES¹ • 12-month subscription to the Vertu Dedicated Concierge service • Vertu Life • Vertu Certainty • www.vertu.me ¹ Certain services depend on the location, network and/or service Price: CHF 21,200.–
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All eternity in a watch
More than merely telling the time and providing decoration on the arm, watches have become a genuine communication tool. And because time is precious, watches have a real future. Text: Manfred Fritz – Illustration: Nicolas Zentner
The biannual magazine for customers of Les Ambassadeurs Circulation: 80,000 copies Languages: German, English, French, Italian, Russian and Chinese Publisher
Les Ambassadeurs AG, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland Project Officer
alert AG, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Blond Publishing AG, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland Project leadership
Charlotte Bodmer Ariane Hirschi Editorial staff
Medard Meier (Management) Hanspeter Eggenberger Title picture
he history of measuring time is much older than humanity itself. Because the really great watches – the stars, the seasons or the very alternation of day and night – were already there, and marked the rhythms of life before Homo sapiens ever placed a stick in the ground and began to measure the shadow of the sun. Before water or sand was used to render the passing of time visible. And before he finally invented an ingenious machine that served, with the help of two little hands, to display the constantly shifting nature of the present moment. Those narrow lines that irrevocably separate past and future. We began to call them clocks. They originally measured only hours (“hora” in Latin). Since then many options have emerged, which can even be added to the small dial. The accuracy of watches has also taken huge strides forward, either through improved mechanics or with the help of electronics.
But the fundamental principle, that a watch captures a consciously experienced moment – i.e. the present – remains unchanged. Only from such a specific moment can we look forwards and backwards. And so this everyday object has never fallen out of fashion; its significance has never become superfluous. Because the basic human need to orient ourselves in time and space and to organise our time – our most precious possession – has never waned. And will never do so. Which is precisely why watches have a future. Without a doubt, we also want to use our watches to communicate. And by this we certainly don’t mean that the place taken up on our wrists will become an extension of our smartphones. No, it will serve rather as a non-verbal statement, revelatory of our lifestyle, taste or particular sporting preference. The traditionalists, minimalists, technology-freaks and luxury addicts will be discreetly unmasked. Show me your watch and I’ll tell you who you are.
enzed, Mélanie & Nicolas Zentner, CH-1003 Lausanne, Switzerland Production
Hanspeter Eggenberger Translation/ Proofreading
Datawords France, 92300 Levallois-Perret, France Prepress/Print
Druckerei Schefenacker GmbH & Co. KG, 73779 Deizisau, Germany
All published texts and images are copyright-protected. Full or partial reproduction is strictly prohibited without the express consent of their respective owners. © L.A Magazine 2015
L E S
A M B A S S A D E U R S
THE ART O F TA K I N G TIME FOR YOURSELF VA L L É E D E J O U X :
I N T H E VA L L E Y O F F I N E WAT C H E S
THE MOST EXCITING N E W WAT C H E S
T H E WAT C H M A K E R S L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S M A G A Z I N E N O . 1 6
G ENEVA RUE DU RHÔNE 62 +41 22-318 62 22
ZURIC H BAHNHOFSTRASSE 64 +41 44-227 17 17
L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S A P P AVA I L A B L E F O R I O S A N D A N D R O I D TA B L E T S W W W. L E S A M B A S S A D E U R S .C H
LUGA NO VIA NASSA 5 +41 91-923 51 56
ST. M O R I TZ PALACE GALERIE +41 81-833 51 77
M A G A Z I N E
Published on Jun 22, 2015
For us, watches stand for quality of life, taking time for ourselves and the finer things in life, like delighting in precise and creative c...