Pascal Raffy and his team at Bovet enjoy staging complications in lavishly decorated settings. Adjectives like baroque, flamboyant, ornate and rococo work well in this context of hyper-refined watches where striking colours and the art of guilloché also play an important role. The latest colour of the day to sail into Bovet is turquoise, which was introduced earlier this year on the 19Thirty. Bovet now unveils three timepieces in its repertoire with new turquoise guilloché dials: Récital 27, Récital 23 and Monsieur Bovet.
An ornamental technique for engraving soft materials like wood or ivory, guilloché was first used in watchmaking in the 18th century and adopted by founder Edouard Bovet to decorate his sumptuous watches. Since Pascal Raffy’s acquisition of the brand in 2001, Bovet’s in-house team of artisans have decorated countless dials with this elegant decorative technique. Also known as engine turning or guillochage, artisans manually engrave a series of intricate geometric patterns on the base dial. The pattern is then filled with layer after layer of translucent coloured lacquer. Once it has dried, the pattern of the underlying engraving is revealed allowing its wavy patterns to play with the light. Bovet’s latest guilloché dials are decorated with an intriguing turquoise colour that constantly changes with the light. From one angle it looks dark blue, from another an almost electric shade of blue.
The Récital 27
The Récital 27, released in 2019, is Bovet’s take on the traveller’s watch. Since we are dealing with Bovet, this complex travel watch doesn’t settle for the standard two time zones but flaunts three time zones, a domed double hemisphere moon phase indicator and a seven-day power reserve. One of the standout features of the Récital 27 is its sloped ‘writing desk’ case that is thicker at the top tapering towards the bottom. Available in grade 5 titanium or 18k red gold, the turquoise guilloché versions of the Récital 27 measure 46.30mm across and have a thickness of 15.95mm at the top.
Local time is displayed by the hour and minute hands in the centre and the two sub-dials at 3 and 9 o’clock indicate the additional time zones. Each sub-dial features a traditional hour and minutes dial with a day/night indicator represented by the Sun or the Moon. To set the two additional time zones, a corrector on the left adjusts the 9 o’clock sub-dial, and a corrector integrated into the cabochon crown on the right adjusts the 3 o’clock sub-dial. The beauty of this system is that each sub-dial can be set independently to reflect Daylight Saving Time and the city ring, selected from the two overlapping rings, that corresponds to the time zone in question. At 6 o’clock, the Récital 27 has a realistically rendered and domed double moon phase display for lunar cycles in the Northern and Southern hemispheres. The precision mechanism driving the phases of the moon requires only one correction every 122 years.
The turquoise guilloché with a lotus flower motif is applied to the Bovet 1822 cartouche at noon and to the two sub-dials at 3 and 9 o’clock. Even the screws and the stitching on the strap pick up on the colour scheme.The tips of all the hands and the surface of the Moon are treated with Super-LumiNova. The manual-winding movement, visible through the caseback, is impeccably finished by hand.
Quick facts: 46.30mm diameter x 15.95mm height – 18k red gold or grade 5 titanium – water-resistant to 30m – calibre 17DM04-3FPL – hand-wound mechanical – 7-day power reserve – 21,600 vibrations/h – 37 jewels – hours, minutes, coaxial seconds, three time zones, double hemisphere moon phase and power reserve indication – alligator strap with turquoise stitching and white or red gold pin buckle – ref. R270011/01 in titanium CHF 70,000 – ref. R270011/46 in red gold CHF 75,000 – limited to 60 pieces in each case material
The Récital 23
The Récital 23 was Bovet’s first women’s timepiece with a sloping case. The distinctive features of the Récital are its oval-shaped case and hands that form a heart shape when they are in proximity of one another. Available in 18k red or white gold, the 43mm x 38.70mm case is set with 174 brilliant-cut diamonds with a further 72 diamonds on the bezel and a cabochon crown.
The novelty for this automatic time-only watch is the decoration of the off-centred hours and minutes dial that occupies the lower half of the dial. Embellished with guillochage and a lovely shade of turquoise, the dial uses 10 diamonds for hour markers. A three-dimensional structure with a circular aperture highlights the exact phase of the Moon. This tapered rounded structure, which extends from the top part of the guilloché dial requires over a day’s work to create and decorate. Thanks to the extra room provided by the sloping case, the hemispherical moon phase rises to meet the gaze with its realistic surface texture. The cabochon crown has a push button to adjust the phases of the moon. The hour and minute hands and the moon phase indicator are all treated with Super-LumiNova. The Récital 23 comes on an alligator strap with turquoise stitching and a matching gold pin buckle. Visible through the caseback, the automatic movement features a scrolling Fleurisanne engraved gold rotor.
Quick facts: diameter 43mm x width 38.70mm x height 14.40mm – 18k red or white gold – case set with 174 brilliant-cut diamonds, bezel with 72 diamonds – sapphire cabochon with corrector – off-centred turquoise guilloché dial with 10 diamond indices – precision moon phase indicator at 12 o’clock – calibre 11DA17-MP – automatic – 21,600vph – 62h power reserve – from CHF 55,000
The Monsieur Bovet
Launched in 2015, the multi-faceted Monsieur Bovet doubles up as a two-sided wristwatch, a pendant or pocket watch and a desk clock. Thanks to Bovet’s ingenious Amadeo® convertible case, the watch can be transformed without the use of tools. The two cabochons on the lugs at 12 o’clock can be pushed to release the upper strap, while a push-piece hidden in the bezel releases the lower strap to transform it into a pendant or pocket watch. To transform the watch into a miniature table clock, the hinged bezel can be lifted and tucked under the watch as a stand.
Since it has two dials, the beautiful turquoise guillochage is featured on the front for the full hour and minute dial and on the back for the smaller off-centred dial. Both dials display a lotus flower guilloché pattern with twelve petals to mark the hours. However, the largest turquoise dial (without the small seconds counter usually found on this model) is where the skills of Bovet’s artisans really come to light with its applied gold Roman numerals and squiggly serpentine hour and minute hands.
The hand-wound calibre 13BM09AI, developed and manufactured in-house (including the hairspring) beats at 21,600vph and can store up to seven days of power reserve on one barrel. What is remarkable is that the movement powers both sides of the watch offering hours, minutes and coaxial seconds. By superimposing two seconds wheels rotating in opposite directions on the same axis, Bovet’s master watchmakers have pulled off this technical feat.
The Monsieur Bovet comes with a gold-plated silver or rhodium-plated silver chain for the pocket watch or pendant option and a full-grain alligator strap with turquoise stitching and a red or white gold pin buckle.
Quick facts: 43mm diameter x 12.35mm height – Amadeo convertible case – 18k white or red gold – turquoise guilloche with lotus flower motif on both hour and minute dials – calibre 13BM09A1 – 21,600vph – 7-day power reserve – double coaxial seconds – ref. AI43031 red gold CHF 53,000 – ref. AI43031 white gold CHF 56,000 – limited to 60 pieces in each metal
For more details, please visit bovet.com.