Back in 2020, Bulgari decided it was time for the return of a late-1990s icon, the Bulgari Aluminium collection. Through a series of regularly available models and special editions, Bulgari has reintroduced this lightweight contemporary sports watch. Instantly recognisable by its Bvlgari Bvlgari signed black rubberised bezel and segmented black rubber bracelet, the Bulgari Aluminium is all about contrasts in colours and materials. Following the Vespucci and Ducati Special Editions, the third act of Aluminium’s play is inspired by pre-war car instrument panels. The simplest of the three from a mechanical perspective, the Bulgari Aluminium Sorayama Special Edition is no less endearing.
To create this special edition, Bulgari worked with renowned Japanese hyper-realism artist Hajime Sorayama, whose work is often inspired by 1930s and 1940s classicism, aviation and cars. The dial is inspired by the instrument panels found in cars and aeroplanes from that very era, as it mimics the finish given to bare sheet metal panels back in the day. In fact, it is said to be directly taken from the Spirit of St. Louis, the aircraft that made the first non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean back in 1927, piloted by Charles Lindberg.
The Bulgari Aluminium Sorayama Special Edition shares the same 40mm wide lightweight aluminium case of the regular time-and-date model. The guarded crown and titanium caseback are coated in black DLC, with this signature black rubber bezel completing the iconic look. The silver dial shows shimmering pearlescent swirls that catch the light and throw it around as you move. The applied and polished hour indices are interrupted with a single Arabic 2, the artist’s personal lucky number. Each marker is accompanied by a luminous dot and black minute markers. The sword-shaped hands have a luminous tip as well, and at 3 o’clock the index is cut to reveal the date.
Hidden from view is an outsourced automatic movement based on the ETA 2892 or Sellita 300-1 movement. This uses 26 jewels and ticks at a frequency of 28,800vph. Once fully wound, the power reserve is 42 hours. It indicates central hours, minutes and seconds, and the date. The movement is protected to a depth of 100 meters, so it’s safe to take it for a swim if you want.
The Bulgari Aluminium Sorayama Special Edition falls in line with its sibling as it comes on the signature segmented rubber strap with aluminium links and pin buckle. This is attached to the central lug sections with aluminium end-links. Limited to just 1,000 pieces, this new special series retails for EUR 3,300.
For more information, please visit Bulgari.com.