On September 24th the charity auction Only Watch will be held in Monaco. Many of the most prestigious Swiss watch brands created a unique watch for this charity event that is held during the Monaco Yacht Show. All the proceeds of the Only Watch charity auction will be donated to the research of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. The next Only Watch auction is organized in close collaboration with Patrizzi & Co and the Monaco Yacht Show, and is under the patronage of Prince Albert II of Monaco.
Especially for Only Watch 2009 Vacheron Constantin created it’s first tantalum watch. Vacheron Constantin decided to create a tantalum Quai de l’Ile. Christian Selmoni, head of Product Marketing, says this choice was made because it fits into the research spirit needed when fighting against a disease as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.
The case exists of 10 parts which are fixed to a titanium inner case. The function of this titanium inner case is to hold the movement in place. This inner case itself consists of 7 pieces. The case of the Quai de l’Ile is far more sophisticated than that of a normal case.
The heart of the case, flanks and bezel sections are considered as three “interchangeable” components. On ‘normal’ Vacheron Constantin Quai de l’Ile models this allows personal customisation with three different metals – Palladium, Titanium and Pink Gold. This unique piece for Only Watch 2009 is entirely made of tantalum, except the flanks. The flanks of the watch are made of palladium.
Tantalum is a very rare and noble metal, not only because of the qualities of the metal but also because it’s unique, very dark, look. Unlike other metals used on watches, the dark color is not achieved by adding coatings or other treatments, but it is the metal’s natural color.
The dial and crystal are also far from usual. The Maltese cross symbol and the numbers 12, 3, 6 and 9 are linked into the sapphire by using multiple layers technology, called galvanic growth. The other numerals are laser engraved then inked in white ink.
Furthermore, the Only Watch Quai de l’Ile features a dark red minute track engraved and painted on a lower part of the whole dial. Finally, on the inside ring of the dial, there is an outer subdial which has a decorative 3D engraving representing the logo “Only Watch”. “Only” is engraved and “Watch” is in relief, so that when the light hits the sapphire crystal the name “Only Watch” appears in three dimensions.