December 10, 2018

A tete-a-tete with Bovet’s Grand Prix award winner 22 Grand Recital

This year is ending at an exciting note for Swiss watchmaker Bovet. With multiple awards in the kitty, including most coveted the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix) for its ‘Recital 22 Grand Recital’ watch, Bovet has already caught the attention of connoisseurs world-wide.

With plans to make only 60 of the limited edition time-pieces, Bovet representatives are busy showcasing the marvel across the world, including in India. Vishawatch caught up with Kurt Hefti, International Sales Director for the brand on his recent visit to the country. Here are a few insights into the Rs 3.75 crore platinum piece, that is surely worth flaunting!

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“The award is like winning an Oscar for the best movie,” shared Hefti beaming with pride. Introduced in Geneva earlier this year, it is the third watch in the series based on an astronomical theme.

With the Sun, Earth and Moon set beautifully in the dial, the watch has a perpetual calendar on the reverse. It is built around a tellurium, an astronomical complication that shows the position of the Earth with respect to the two heavenly bodies. Highly complicated and elaborately decorated, the watch comes with a power reserve of nine days. That’s not all, it also glows in the dark.

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With over 700 components, the watch has 60 movements. According to Hefti, Bovet makes all the components in-house, including the hair-spring which is considered to be the heart of the tourbillion. It usually takes upto 70 hours for a master craftsman to assemble the components into one special piece.

Bovet makes just 2,000 timepieces every year. “I like to meet the buyers one-on-one. We are bespoke in that sense like it was in the 19th century,” says Hefti, who is considering opening a mono-brand boutique in India in due time. At present the big markets for Bovet are the Middle East, Russia, Hong Kong and Singapore. In India, the brand is represented by Mumbai-based Regalia Luxury.

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“It is a very good time to be in India. About 4-5 years ago, people might not even look at a Bovet. But there is a shift as watch collectors are willing to get away from the popular,” he added. Like other markets, the brand is betting big on personalised and engraved pieces in the country.

The Bovet company was founded in 1822 by Edouard Bovet with a focus on the watchmaking trade with China. The brand as we know it today was acquired by Pascal Raffy, a former pharmaceutical industry executive and passionate watch collector, in 2001.