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GPHG - Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève
Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix - Time for jewellery

Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix Time for jewellery

Diamonds, precious stones and artistic designs mingling flowers, animals and lacework: the Jewellery category of the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix draws us into a refined dream world.

The Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix Jewellery category comprises 16 watches, which are intended for women, the sole exception being the Diamond Resilience by Speake-Marin – of which the understated charm in comparison with the other competitors, along with the 42 mm diameter, make it entirely suitable for a man’s wrist.

When the priority is firmly placed on the jewellery nature of a model, with an abundance of precious materials and stones, as well as gem-setting expertise, watchmaking is naturally relegated to a background role. Only four of the 16 watches in the Jewellery category house a mechanical movement (Hermès, Speake-Marin, Omega and Champs-Elysées) and all except two (Omega and Speake-Marin) display only the hours and minutes. So for now let’s forget about horological techniques and complications, and allow ourselves to be borne on the wings of a jewellery dream.

Vivid colours
While diamonds are the undisputed stars on the jewellery watch scene, some of the creations in this category are graced with resplendent colours. Such is very much the case with the models in de Grisogono’s Grappoli collection, of which the sparkling precious stones – orange or blue sapphires, emeralds and amethysts – are briolette-cut around the white gold case and undulate with each flick of the wrist. The dial and bezel are adorned with the same stones, but arranged in a snow setting, while the pearl-like beads of the galuchat strap lend an additional precious touch to the watch.


de grisogono grappoli


The Hortensia secret watch by Chaumet unfurls the tender colours of a splendid bouquet of flowers sculpted in gold, opal and tourmaline, daintily concealing the natural white mother-of-pearl dial. A large pear-shaped pink tourmaline prolongs this delightful garden on the 6 o’clock lug of the pink satin strap.



The black and white dial of the Arceau Temari model by Hermès – echoing the ancestral Japanese folk art “balls” known as temari – is created by a traditional gem-set pattern of diamonds and onyx marquetry, while the white gold case is graced with a snow setting of 700 diamonds that renders each piece truly unique. The watch houses the Manufacture Hermès H1912 movement, of which the mainplate is graced with circular-grained and snailed finishes, while the bridges and the oscillating weight are satin-brushed and engraved with the H for Hermès.




A flurry of diamonds
The models presented by Boucheron, Chanel, DeLaneau and Louis Vuitton focus entirely on diamonds, at the expense of any other precious stones, while showcasing resolutely different designs and case shapes. The rectangular case typical of Boucheron, along with the bezel, dial and bracelet of the Reflet Pompon watch, are entirely set with round and baguette-cut diamonds. The couture-inspired detachable pompon (tassle) that may be worn as a pendant undulates like a supple fabric – in this instance replaced by a diamond pavé setting.



At Chanel, Mademoiselle Gabrielle’s famous lion is back with a roar, taking pride of place on the spectacular Lion Mosaïque watch in white gold and diamonds. The bracelet of this model takes the form of an imposing lion’s head in three-quarter profile that looms larger than the watch case itself. This creation is inspired by Byzantine mosaics, echoed in the geometrically-cut shapes of the variously sized diamonds.




Each model in the Grace collection by DeLaneau is unique and the one competing in this year’s Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix is the Grace Pear Diamonds watch with its 48.48 carats of diamonds. The broad wraparound bracelet is composed of 352 cascading pear-shaped diamonds, rose-cut according to an ancestral technique. Emerging from the middle is a round white gold case topped by a bezel and framing a dial set with a total of 268 gems.



The Dentelle de Monogram watch by Louis Vuitton exudes an extremely pure design with its dainty 30 mm white gold case and its rivière-style bracelet set with round diamonds. The shimmering mother-of-pearl dial picks up the Dentelle (lacework) motif of the eponymous jewellery collection and clothes it in diamonds.



Faced with such a dazzling array of charms, the watchmaking experts of the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix will be able to rely on gemmologist and jeweller Claude Sfeir to help them decide between these stunning competitors.

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