Bovet’s classic Virtuoso V model, with jumping hours and retrograde seconds on one face and hours, minutes, seconds and power reserve indicator on the reverse, gets a makeover in 2020 with a blue guilloché sub-dial and lavish hand-engraved Fleurisanne motifs. In the same spirit, Bovet’s more contemporary Récital 26 Brainstorm Chapter One, with its sloping sapphire crystal case and host of complications, also gets a new face with the incorporation of a transparent red quartz sub-dial.
Récital 26 Brainstorm Chapter One
Bovet’s trilogy of astronomical tourbillon timepieces – the Shooting Star (2016), the Astérium (2017) and the Grand Récital 22 (winner of the GPHG Aiguille d’Or in 2018) – showed the world that the brand was capable of producing deliriously complicated watches. Apart from the stunning complications and high-end finishes, the three watches were housed in sloping ‘writing desk’ cases. Following in the wake of this trilogy came the Récital 26 Brainstorm Chapter One (2019), a more modern expression of a tourbillon and moon-phase watch housed in a transparent sapphire crystal case responding to owner Pascal Raffy’s quest for transparency.
Panoramic sloping case
The Récital 26 Brainstorm of 2020 is still housed in a panoramic sloping sapphire crystal case but kicks off 2020 with a domed transparent red quartz dial, a symbolic colour for the brand’s Chinese aficionados. Just for the record, there are other choices of dial colours with green or blue quartz options and even a black propeller-shaped dial. Measuring 48mm in diameter with a case thickness of 15.50mm, the sapphire crystal case is supported with titanium lugs and a titanium caseback, materials known for their lightness. You can get a feel for the challenges faced by Pascal Raffy’s team to construct and polish the inclined sapphire crystal receptacle in MONOCHOME’s exclusive video here.
A scenery of domes
A semicircular cut-out at 12 o’clock on the domed red quartz hours and minutes counter reveals the hemispherical precision 3D moon-phase indicator (requiring a correction of just one day every 122 years) that rises up to the same level as the dial. The realistic surface of the two moons (north and south hemisphere) are engraved and filled with Super-LumiNova while the night sky is made from two circular and domed aventurine glass plates.
A crescent-shaped indent on the red quartz dial at 6 o’clock exposes the double face flying tourbillon. Suspended in mid-air, the tourbillon is decorated with a sun motif and held in place by five arms. The 10-day power reserve indicator is placed inside a silver circle at 4 o’clock and the big date appears directly opposite, at 8 o’clock with a hollowed-out circle to frame the numerals that are printed on two discs. The disc housing the units is also made from sapphire to provide the necessary transparency. As you would expect from Bovet, the finishes are exceptional from every angle.
Stepped movement architecture
When viewed from the side, you can appreciate how the manual-winding movement’s atypical construction matches the inclination of the sapphire case. With its stepped architecture and succession of inclined planes, each indication hinges on an axis perpendicular to the bezel’s inclined plane offering enhanced legibility. Equipped with just one barrel, and thanks to a spherical differential winding system, the movement offers 10 days of autonomy for the hours, minutes, seconds on the tourbillon, big date, power indicator and moon-phase indicator.
Presented with a matching dark red alligator strap with an 18k white gold pin buckle, the Tourbillon Brainstorm Chapter One with a red quartz dial is limited to 10 pieces and retails for CHF 325,000.
Quick facts: 48mm x 15.50mm – inclined sapphire crystal case with titanium lugs and caseback – 30m water-resistance – red quartz dial – hand-wound flying tourbillon movement (calibre 17DM04-SMP) 10-day power reserve – 18,000vph – alligator strap with white gold pin buckle – ref. R260011 – limited edition 10 pieces – CHF 325,000
Amadeo Fleurier Virtuoso V
This 2020 Virtuoso V model, the watch with two faces and a convertible case, pursues an even more classic vein with a blue lacquered guilloché sub-dial for the jumping hours and retrograde minutes. The rest of the front dial is a showcase of the hallmark Fleurisanne hand-engraved motif with its scrolling foliage. Recently we’ve seen a lavish red guilloché interpretation of the Virtuoso V and a more revealing model in 2018 with the balance wheel and small seconds on the dial side.
The two-faced watch
The Virtuoso V made its debut in 2015 and is characterised by its two faces; both the dial side and the reverse side display the time, but in different formats and are driven by a single movement. The difference is that the dial side features jumping hours and retrograde minutes while the reverse features a more conventional hours and minutes sub-dial complemented by a small seconds counter and a power reserve indicator. Another aspect that might not be immediately evident is the possibility of setting one of the hour displays with a different time to create GMT functionality.
Jumping Hours and Retrograde Minutes
Jumping hours and retrograde minutes don’t usually keep company. The combination of these two types of displays is particularly rare requiring the perfect synchronisation between the jump of the hour disk and that of the retrograde minute hand. The jumping hour display of the Virtuoso V is located in an aperture in the centre of the dial and the retrograde minutes placed in an arc above. Covering a segment of 160°, the minute hand advances from right to left and performs a semi-instantaneous leap each hour.
Versatile Amadeo Case
Another characteristic of the Virtuoso V is its Amadeo case, Bovet’s versatile case construction allowing you to wear the watch on your wrist (in dial mode or caseback mode with sapphire crystal revealing movement), as a pocket watch and even as an upright table clock using the rear bezel as a stand. And all that without the use of a single tool. The Amadeo case of this model is crafted in polished 18k white gold has a diameter of 43.50mm and a height of 5.70mm. The characteristic bow over the crown allows the watch to be suspended from a chain and also accommodates the dark blue alligator strap with its white gold pin buckle.
The new Virtuoso V is equipped with the hand-wound Virtuoso II movement – calibre 13BM11AIHSMR – which measures 31mm in diameter and operates at 21,600 vibrations per hour. One large barrel drives all the complications and can store up to five days of power reserve. As you would expect from Bovet, the Amadeo Fleurier Virtuoso V and its movement are finished to the brand’s exacting standards.
Quick facts: 43.5mm x 15.70mm – 18k white gold convertible Amadeo case – sapphire crystal front and back – 30m water-resistance – blue guilloché dial and hand-engraved Fluerisanne motifs – Calibre 13BM11AIHSMR – manual winding – 5-day power reserve – 21,600vph – jumping hours, retrograde minutes, on one side – hours, minutes, seconds and power reserve indication on the other – alligator strap with white gold pin buckle – ref. ACHS024 – CHF 76,000
More information at bovet.com.