Top Picks From Baselworld 2015: Blancpain11:25 am
It was in the beginning of 18th century when Jehan-Jacques Blancpain dreamt of building an empire on the potential of the art of mechanical watchmaking. In 1735, he founded the brand Blancpain which stood on the ideals of traditional watchmaking and till date resonates the same principles of class and refinement. Blancpain is a brand that enjoys great success thanks to some of the most brilliant innovations in the world of horology. They are known to have replaced the crown-wheel mechanism with a cylinder escapement, a major innovation into the watchmaking world.
Each year at Baselworld, Blancpain showcases their latest creations and captures the audience by a storm. This year too they had something similar planned. At the Blancpain booth we got to experience rich tradition and interiors that told the store of legends. We saw some of the most exquisite timepieces being launched at their podium this year. Here are a shortlisted few.
Unveiling Blancpain Villeret Grand Date, a first in the big date watch in the Villeret line. The grande Date is powerful time teller built on Calibre 6950 with a reserve of 72 hours. The automatic mechanism allows the date to shift instantly at midnight. The latest innovation in caliber 6950 is that it has a free-sprung Glucydur balance wheel and gold screws for fine adjustment. The balance spring is made of silicon.
Beautifully imbedded with a subtle sense of depth, the watch is hosued in a 40mm rose gold case. The silver opaline dial flaunts beautiful rose gold hands for hours, minutes, seconds pointing at roman numerals. The two windows of the big date display at 6 o’clock are sunken down two levels from the main dial, which matches the “double pomme” graduated design of the bezel. The fluted crown bears the brand logo and manages the internal mechanism. Through the Grand Date’s caseback, one can see the côtes de Genève decorations on the baseplate and the “honeycomb” design on the rose-gold oscillating weight. Staying true to the origin of a dress watch, the Villiret features a classic brown leather strap.
Blancpain revisited the amalgamation of tourbillion and carousel with the new watch in the L-Evolution series. With an interesting take on the bezel and an asymmetrical bridge and desk design make this particular model very intriguing. The amazing feature of this timepiece is that the two regulators, whirlpool and the carousel are each provided with a barrel in order to have both vertical and complications harmoniously within the movement. The watch is housed in a platinum case and is integrated with a black alligator leather strap. It is a truly revolutionary piece from the house of Blancpain.
Moving to the universal god of wisdom, intelligence and creativity, Blancpain released this very celebrated watch, The Shakudo. Shakudo is an alloy created primarily from gold and copper that attains an interesting dark brown or blue-black colour. The alloy was used at the time to make the guards including swords, decorative items or jewellery. Now the watch dial is decorated with the much recognisable Ganesha made with the alloy and hand-engraved with traditional Hindu motifs at the centre. In compliance with the aesthetics of the Villeret collection and Grande rooms and inlaid decoration, these models are available in a large double apple box red gold 45 mm. The watch is definitely a divine intervention.
Blancpain crafted something very special for the ladies this time. The innovative day night indicator on the dial of this exquisite watch is a sight to remember. The hand engraved Night Day disc rotates twice daily. This rotation is done in about four minutes, the scenery scrolls slowly and thus leaves time to discover all the details of the day or night. The watch has two retrograde indicators, one for the hour and the other for second along with a central minute counter. With a caliber 1150, the watch demonstrates expertise of the brand’s DNA and its tradition of innovation with this new class created especially for Women.
Stunners in the first look itself, these special time tellers from Blancpain encompass both elegance and tradition and were a win at the Baselworld 2015 fair.