After the successful inaugural Quai Des Bergues watch, followed by a complex tourbillon piece, the Place Vendôme, it is time for Czapek to unveil its third complication, this time with a sportier inspiration. As you probably noticed already, the new Czapek “Faubourg de Cracovie” (named after the location of Czapek’s third boutique) features a chronograph movement – and not the worst of them, as this watch is the first to be equipped with Vaucher’s brand new calibre.
If the new Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie Chronograph looks familiar, it is for a good reason. It cleverly takes most of the design codes of the Quai Des Bergues watch and updates them to integrate a new movement, with chronograph functions. For this very reason, the 41.5mm case is similar in shape and finishing to the time-only version, with polished and brushed surfaces. The chronograph pushers are perfectly integrated into the signature design. The crown protectors found on the Quai des Bergues are still in place but now serve, ingeniously, as pushers. The overall case remains sober and discreet.
This version – the sportiest to date in the collection – is for the moment available only in “XO” stainless steel – one of the most anti-corrosive steels ever made. The watch features a chronograph but preserves elegant attributes, such as a nicely domed sapphire crystal and alligator or “guilloché-like” rubber straps.
The Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie will be offered in three different versions. The first one features a white “grand feu” enamel dial. Produced by Donzé Cadrans, this dial is domed – something that is extremely complex to achieve on enamel. It is paired with blued skeletonised hands, thin Roman numerals, including a bright red one at 12 o’clock. This version is the least expected for a chronograph, yet it remains true to Czapek’s usual production.
The two other editions of the Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie Chronograph present the guilloché “ricochet” decoration of the Quai des Bergues collection. The name of this pattern, which dates back to François Czapek himself, is described as: “Intersecting circular lines form a pattern of bas-relief squares that make the dial come alive, recalling the wave interference pattern a stone might make when ricocheting on water“. These two versions, one blue and one black, might have a traditionally-executed dial, they also are slightly sportier with their applied baton indexes and their hands filled with luminous paint. The black version has even reinforced this with silver sub-dials.
The Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie is a three-register chronograph with small seconds, a 30-minute counter and a 12-hour counter. In addition to that, a date is placed at 6 o’clock. Czapek’s first chronograph is driven by a bespoke automatic movement, the SXH3. This integrated column-wheel chronograph movement is manufactured by Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier – in fact, the Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie is the first watch to rely on this newly introduced and impressive movement. For this reason, it has a high-beat frequency (5Hz or 36,000vib/hour), as well as a comfortable 65h power reserve. It also features high-end solutions, such as a fully integrated architecture, a column wheel and a vertical clutch. On this watch, the movement is decorated with diamond-blasted anthracite bridges.
The Czapek Faubourg de Cracovie Chronograph will be available as of June 30, 2018. It will be priced at CHF 24,000. More details on czapek.com.