One of the success stories of modern-day independent watchmaking, the name Czapek came back to life in late 2015 with the elegant and well-thought-out Quai des Bergues, inspired by a pocket watch from the mid-19th century. The Quai des Bergues received an accolade with the public prize at GPHG 2016, one of the most (if not the most) meaningful industry award ceremonies, which is no small achievement. On the occasion of Geneva Watch Days, the brand presents new versions of the model with an upgraded movement. Meet the Czapek Quai des Bergues Emerald Green L and Sapphire Blue L.
At first glance, the new Quai des Bergues variants will feel familiar. The two models are presented in the inaugural 42.5mm case in stainless steel. The flinqué dials feature the signature Czapek Ricochet guilloché pattern in two intense enamelled colours – named sapphire blue and emerald green. The intricate, repetitive motif is based on a double focal point to create finely textured, captivating and distinctive wave interferences. The elongated Roman numerals are paired with distinctive rhodium-plated Fleur de Lys hands.
“The spirit of the watch has not been touched,” says Czapek CEO Xavier de Roquemaurel, “but we have had a second look at the movement and identified what you might call evolutionary inflexion points.”
The main novelty actually is not about the habillage, but about the mechanics. Indeed, the exhibition caseback reveals an updated version of the calibre SXH1. This proprietary engine has been developed and is manufactured by movement specialist Chronode. The most noticeable change is the openwork bridges, a choice that is clearly derived from the Antarctique’s calibre SHX5, the brand’s first in-house movement. There is also this tiny triangular cut-out just below the barrels. The decoration of calibre SHX1 has been upgraded with even more refined angles. The rubies are now mi-glace (which is, for instance, a criterion for the Hallmark of Geneva). They now have a rounded surface that improves lubrication. They also grace the movement beautifully catching rays of light.
The oscillator has also been upgraded. The balance wheel features weights for variable inertia and the hairspring features a Breguet terminal curve. This new balance is the main technical change – the twin barrel hand-wound movement still runs at a 3Hz frequency while storing 7 days of power reserve when fully wound – which eventually allows you to track the days of the week as the springs unwind.
The updated Czapek Quai des Bergues Emerald Green L and Sapphire Blue L are worn on an alligator leather strap with a steel pin buckle. The price is set at CHF 18,000. For more information, please visit www.czapek.com.