Omega Luc Latapie and his Omega Seamaster
Luc Latapie is an osteopath, a diver, and a loyal supporter of Omega since he obtained his first Seamaster at the age of 18. He has also converted his entire family to Omega watches.
Before earning his diving instructor certificates, first CMAS in 1990, followed by PADI in 2008, Luc Latapie says he was a “Sunday diver” from the age of 12, when he spent his summers in the south of France. So it was only natural that he should look for a diving watch, as an 18th birthday treat. After spending a few months looking around, he was stopped in his tracks by a shop window in Geneva’s Rue du Mont-Blanc. He had just found the watch of his dreams: the Seamaster 1000. It was love at first sight. He didn’t know much about Omega, but he did some research on the model, and quickly discovered that this was the diving watch that had been tested by the legendary Jacques Cousteau, a highly respected figure in the underwater community. Commander Cousteau had attached a prototype of the Seamaster 1000 to the hull of the submarine that, on several occasions between 1968 and 1972, he took down to a depth of 1000 metres. The phenomenal waterproofing of the watch and its association with Cousteau’s expeditions sealed its legendary status and established it as an iconic diving watch. As well as being captivated by the watch’s appearance, Luc Latapie also fell for its history. In his eyes, it was as important and as symbolic as his guitar.
Luc Latapie © DR
And yet, he almost lost it. He was resurfacing after an underwater fishing expedition. In order to descend to 40 metres, he had worn a lead diving belt; the belt was attached to helium balloons so that, once back in the 20-metre zone, it could be jettisoned. But just after he had unfastened the belt, Luc Latapie noticed something: his watch was attached to it, dangling between the strap and the weights. “I was extraordinarily lucky. If I hadn’t seen it go, I would never have found it, 40 metres below.” Since then, he has become even more attached to his Seamaster 1000, and he has even greater respect for Omega. So when he read in the press that Omega was planning to reissue another cult diving watch, the famous Seamaster Professional 600 m, he didn’t think twice. “It’s more than a watch: it connects the watch world to the underwater world, and I wanted one immediately. I love the shape of the Ploprof case, the orange push-piece that has replaced the red pusher on the old model, the crown lock and, of course, the steel shark-proof bracelet with its integral extension to fit over your diving suit. It’s more precise than the original model, and it’s also very convenient that you can simply adjust the hour, without changing the minutes, when you’re travelling.” He liked it so much, in fact, that he also ordered a spare clasp with the additional black and orange rubber straps.
Luc Latapie and his Omega Seamaster © DR
A free spirit
Luc Latapie, an autodidact and outdoor enthusiast, has continued to earn professional qualifications throughout his life. Etiopathy, naturopathy, physiotherapy... his most recent qualification is a national osteopathy diploma, which brings him up to date with the latest standards of the profession. What does he like best about his job? “I love the independence. I have an enormous amount of freedom to do my job; I love working with doctors, and the contact with patients. The richness of working independently comes with risks, but I have the same feeling of freedom in my job as I do when I’m diving, or in the mountains. I never feel as if I’m being held back. I have obligations, but no constraints.” And yet he also needs to dream: “The day I no longer love what I’m doing, my life will be over.” But that’s still a long way off! Luc Latapie keeps his feet on the ground, and focuses on dreams that are accessible. What he cares most about is sharing, communicating and bringing happiness to the people around him. “I’m quite happy to dive or go for a hike in the mountains on my own; those moments of solitude are good for me. But I couldn’t live alone, or away from the people I love.” One day, he hopes to pass on his Omega watches to his two sons, even though they already have one each, in completely different styles. The oldest has a vintage Omega Geneva, while his younger brother (whose wife wears an Omega De Ville Co-Axial) has a Speedmaster Moonwatch. Luc Latapie bought his own wife, Marianne, an Omega De Ville Prestige. “It was a big surprise, because I wear very little jewellery, and I was drawn to its sporty-chic look.” The third generation of the Latapie family is currently a girls-only affair, and there’s no doubt that Omega will play a role in celebrating the major milestones of their lives too.
Latapie family wearing Omega watches © WorldTempus/Brice Lechevalier
Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200m Co-Axial
The Ploprof 1200 m Co-Axial, launched in 2016, is a reissue of the iconic Seamaster Professional 600m of 1970. It is water resistant to 1200 metres and comes equipped with an automatic helium valve (at 4 o’clock), a screwed crown and bidirectional rotating bezel with safety button (at 2 o’clock). The current version has a five-year guarantee, and is priced at CHF 8,750. The “shark-proof” steel bracelet (or rubber strap) has a folding clasp with finely graduated adjustment and additional fold-out extension piece. The automatic manufacture movement is the COSC-certified 8500 calibre with Co-Axial escapement, delivering a power reserve of 60 hours. There is a date window at 4 o’clock, and a second time zone can be displayed on the bezel. The movement is protected by a hefty steel case (55 x 48 mm) and a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating.
Seamaster Ploprof 1200m Co-Axial © Omega
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