The Montblanc fountain pen has come a long way since the first model, the Meisterstück, was produced in 1924. The German-made pens have embraced international cultures, including the spirit of the UAE by launching a special pen (pictured above) to commemorate the UAE National Day on December 2.
The pen was specially handcrafted by the finest Montblanc artisans to salute the UAE on its National Day. With just 32 flag pens available, each priced at Dh150,000, it is no surprise these pens are kept under lock and key and handled with cotton gloves.
Each pen is stored in a glossy black wooden box, with a stainless steel engraved plate detailing the significance of the pen and the number.
The pen is set in 18 carat white gold and the flag is delicately crafted with hundreds of diamonds and precious stones, each certified by Montblanc’s artisan atelier.
The flag is embedded with 144 diamonds, 72 emeralds and 48 rubies.
Montblanc is named after Mont Blanc, or white mountain, in the Alps. The Montblanc writing instruments have shaped the destiny of the brand making the snow covered peak of Montblanc, and its black and white symbol, synonymous with the art of writing. Montblanc believes in values and tradition, and an appreciation of the need to take time for the essentials – reflection, beauty and culture.
The company is part of the Richemont Group, which owns several of the world’s leading companies in the field of luxury goods, with particular strengths in jewellery, luxury watches and writing instruments. The group’s luxury interests encompass several of the most prestigious names in the luxury industry, including Cartier, Van Cleef and Arpels, Piaget, Vacheron Constantin, Jaeger-LeCoultre, IWC and Panerai. Montblanc is a truly international brand with operations in more than 70 countries. It sells its products exclusively through its network of retailers and boutiques.
Apart from the classic fountain pens, Montblanc also produces ball-point and roller pens, but the limited edition flag pen is a fountain pen and the claim to fame of its fountain pens is they do not leak.
Although the pen has a high sentimental value, it is by no means the most expensive Montblanc pen.
Last November, Montblanc launched a limited edition pen worth more than Dh1 million.
The pen, titled “Prince Rainier III Limited Edition 81”, was launched in Monaco in homage to Prince Rainier III of Monaco, who died in 2005 aged 81.
With just 81 pens produced, the pen is made of white gold and studded with diamonds and rubies totalling more than eight carats. Half of the sales revenue from the pen, worth about Dh1,055,000, will be given to the “Foundation Princess Grace” to continue the cultural commitment lived by Prince Rainier III. Limited edition pens are a collectors’ item and are considered to maintain, if not increase, their value.
In the United Kingdom, Conway Stewart is renowned for more than a century’s experience in creating luxury pens. The Conway Stewart pens have graced the hands of many historical figures, including Queen Elizabeth II, US presidents, British premiers and other heads of state.
Each pen is handmade, using traditional techniques and the finest materials, including hallmarked solid 18 carat gold and sterling silver.
The limited edition Conway Stewart pens are more affordable than the Montblanc flag pen, but you still would not want to leave one lying around. The 2007 Duro Heritage pen, styled on the 1920s pens, retails at about Dh2,400.
For Montblanc, the limited edition pens have taken on a life of their own and are all the more appealing because of their exclusivity.
Every year since 1992 Montblanc has paid tribute to great writers whose works have become part of world literature, with its Limited Writers Editions. This year, Montblanc dedicated the Writer’s Edition to famous novelist William Faulkner. The year also saw Montblanc’s Special Edition pen dedicated to German actress Marlene Dietrich, the Patrons of Art pen to naturalist and leading cultural patron Alexander Von Humboldt, and the Donation pen to the outstanding musician, Arturo Toscanini. Montblanc has also introduced a deep red scented ink, in the spirit of the festive season.
In the UAE, Rivoli Group is the authorised retailer for Montblanc. The group operates 11 Montblanc boutiques in the UAE. The largest Montblanc Boutique in the Middle East and North Africa was recently opened at Dubai Festival City.
The pen can be viewed at Montblanc boutiques in Abu Dhabi and Dubai and at Al Dukan boutique in the Burj Al Arab Hotel.