Sometimes you see a watch and you immediately ‘fall in love’ with it. This does not happen too often, but what if this happens with two watches from the same brand?
Recently a friend mailed me about a watch that was for sale at a local watch store. He knoww I have a weak spot for mono-poussoir chronographs. The watch was a Roger Dubuis Hommage Mono-poussoir in white gold with a salmon color dial. A salmon color dial is not my usual pick, but this one was so beautiful….
On the wrist the dial just suits the entire watch perfectly and i wouldn’t change anything about it. The engraving of the dial is absolutely stunning. It’s incredibly complex, yet absolutely not ‘loud’. This watch has all the ingredients I like, a mono-poussoir chronograph, an absolutely stunning movement which is superbly finished, classic yet not too convential design, details that will keep me intriguiged and it’s made by an independent watchmaker.
Now I realized this was not the first Roger Dubuis I fell in love with. The other one was an advertisment in a watch magazine I have seen several years ago, when i just started to get into watches. The advertisement showed a man sitting at a table with a newspaper and a cup of coffee. On his wrist was the Roger Dubuis Golden Square Tourbillon with roman numbers. Unfortunately I can’t find any photo of that particular advertisement.
Of course at that time I had no idea what an independent watchmaker was, let alone who Roger Dubuis was. Luckily I found my way to this ‘niche’ in the watch industry. And a niche it is. Most watch aficionados/collectors are not really familiar with the name and fame of independent watchmakers. With the small production number and small advertisement budgets this actually does not come as a surprise. When I visited the watch-store to take a look at the beautiful Hommage Mono-poussoir, I was surprised to see they had two more Roger Dubuis watches!
All three models are from the Hommage collection, which is the first collection be be produced by manufacture Roger Dubuis. The brand Roger Dubuis is named after watchmaker Roger Dubuis who build this brand together with Carlos Dias. Dias, as founder, owner and designer, had a goal to create a manufacture that was completely independent. He succeeded and every single part of the produced watches where produced in-house.
Roger Dubuis was responsible for the technical aspects. Before joining Dias, Dubuis founded his own aterlier in 1980 after developing complications for Patek Philippe. Dias named the manufacture after his friend and business partner Roger Dubuis. And as a tribute to Dubuis, he named the first line Hommage.
In August 2008, the Richemont Group bought the manufacture Roger Dubuis, but they will continue to manufacture and distribute watches under the ‘Roger Dubuis’ name. Now back on topic… I was totally amazed to see three models of the Roger Dubuis line at my local watch-store. Absolutely rare watches, because Roger Dubuis produced only 28 pieces of every dial/case combination!
Below is the Roger Dubuis Hommage, a time-only model. Check the Roger Dubuis website to see the entire collection; you can view both the original collection and the current collection. This style-icon below is 40mm in diameter and made of rose gold. Inside is the in-house designed and produced calibre RD14. This automatic movement has 48 jewels and 171 parts in total. With a frequency of 4Hz (or 28,800 bph) it runs for 48 hours without being wound.
All movements used in Roger Dubuis watches bear the Poincon de Genève or Geneva Seal as proof of the superb quality and finish. At the Roger Dubuis website you can view a very nice short movie about the quality and in-house production of the movements.
Also very interesting is the interview with Carlos Dias, The PuristS Pro did with him some years ago.
If you like to know more about the watches above, visit the watch-store’s website.