Imagine a jewellery watch so finely made that all the diamonds on its case seem to be held together by magic as the gold used for setting the stones is invisible. Yes, it is hard to believe – but it is true!
Switzerland’s Hublot, known the world over for its beautiful luxury timepieces, has come up with yet another masterpiece, the One Million Dollar Big Bang watch.
The watch is the very symbol of the fusion between jewellery and watchmaking. The case is made from 18 carat white gold and is set with 322 baguette diamonds weighing 24.65 carats.
It has a crystal sapphire and white gold back and a white gold crown in which 12 white baguette diamonds weighing 0.8 carats have been set.
The dial is 18 carat white gold and palladium set with 129 baguette diamonds weighing 6.4 carats with diamond-polished faceted skeleton hands.
However, all the gold and palladium that has been used to create this watch is invisible and has prompted experts to label it “a world first” and “a dream become reality” and to compare it to a Faberge egg, which is perhaps the biggest compliment of all.
“The idea was to make the most beautiful and unique jewellery watch where you see only the diamonds and no other material,” Hublot CEO Jean-Claude Biver told Emirates Business. “We wanted to achieve a world first in the jewellery watch segment.
“I was driving when the product manager from Hublot called and described the concept to me. Usually I never give approval without first seeing the design but the whole concept appealed to me so much that I said ‘yes’ immediately.
“I did not back out even when he cautioned me that the chances for success were just 85 per cent and that we could lose quite a bit of our investment. Then right after I got off the phone with him I called one of my friends in Monaco who is also my best jeweller.
I described the concept to her and asked if she would ever buy a watch like that and she too said ‘yes’ without a moment’s hesitation.
“So the watch was ordered on the phone and sold on the phone. All within 15 minutes. No contract, no nothing, just mutual credibility and trust. That was in my opinion the biggest asset and success of this operation.”
Once the decision to go ahead was made Hublot teamed up with the Bunter SA diamond-setting workshop and together they set to work to meet the challenge.
Surrounding themselves with the finest craftsmen and specialists, they developed and utilised the most advanced technology to explore new avenues and create this masterpiece, something that would have been impossible a few years ago.
Even though this type of setting had been tried before but it had never been achieved in such a complex form. Sophisticated icromechanics enabled craftsmen to work to 1/100th of a degree.
Although similar in shape to the Big Bang model, the Million Dollar version has a monobloc construction in white gold.
A grand total of 493 Top Wesselton baguette diamonds of different sizes conceal a Tourbillon movement. The natural rubber bracelet has a deployant buckle with a diamond-set clasp.
“Four highly skilled craftsmen are involved in the making of each watch and it takes them more than 2,000 hours to make one,” added Biver. “We produce only three to four pieces a year and we intend making only 10 of these timepieces. Each will have a different dial and movement and so will be unique.”
A watch that’s second to none