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Bulgari - Octo Black Editions

Bulgari Octo Black Editions

Two new Bulgari Octo models once again prove just how versatile this award-winning collection is.

Only last year Bulgari’s Octo scooped two awards at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG), taking the honours in the Men’s Watch and Tourbillon and Escapement categories with the Octo Finissimo Automatic and the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Skeleton respectively. The brand is poised to strike again this year with the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Automatic recently shortlisted in the Men’s category and the Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater in carbon fibre in the Mechanical Exception category.

Octo Black Editions

The Octo Finissimo Automatic and Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Skeleton, awarded at the GPHG 2017 © Bulgari

Octo Black Editions

The Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Automatic and Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater in carbon fibre, pre-selected at the GPHG 2018 © Bulgari

After Bulgari wowed watch fans earlier this year with its sandblasted Octo Finissimo models in stainless steel and rose gold, the most recent additions to the collection are on the theme of black, a look that is created for the Octo L’Originale Chronograph by a DLC (diamond-like carbon) coating on a stainless-steel case and for the Octo Finissimo Skeleton with the same coating on a titanium base and bracelet.

Octo Black Editions

Octo Finissimo Automatic Sandblasted in rose gold © Bulgari

For the Octo L’Originale Chronograph Bulgari freely admits that “the focus is on style rather than mere legibility”, which is understandable for this kind of all-black “stealth” chronograph. This is perhaps also why the tachymeter scale seen on the grey titanium version is not found on the all-black model. Rather than succumb to the temptation to add some accents of colour, for example on the hands, hour markers or counters, the brand has gone for the full all-black look with a matt black dial, hand-applied black hour markers and facetted black hands, as well as a matching black rubber strap. The tri-compax counter arrangement is also in non-contrasting black. The only small concession is the date window at 4.30, in which the date is shown as a white number against a black background. Timekeeping in the Octo L’Originale Chronograph is provided by the in-house BVL Calibre 328, a high-frequency (5Hz) self-winding column-wheel chronograph movement with a power reserve of 50 hours.

Octo Black Editions

The all-black Octo L'Originale Chronograph © Bulgari

In keeping with the themes of thinness and lightness that are its signature, the all-black edition of the Octo Finissimo Skeleton has a titanium case that has been given a black DLC (diamond-like carbon) coating. Unlike many other ultra-thin watches, the Octo Finissimo has an integrated bracelet in black titanium that is recognized for its design and comfort. For the design Bulgari allows some concessions in terms of colour, with 18-carat rose-gold hands for the central hours and minutes as well as the subsidiary seconds between 7 and 8 o’clock and the power reserve indicator at 9 o’clock. The Octo Finissimo Skeleton is driven by the manually wound BVL calibre 128 SK, which has black mainplate and bridges and offers a power reserve of 65 hours.

Octo Black Editions

The Octo Finissimo Skeleton black © Bulgari

The GPHG criteria allow watches that were commercialised (i.e. first available in stores) between March of the previous year and October of the year of the awards. With that in mind, you may well be looking at two hot contenders for next year’s awards.

Octo Black Editions

Jon Kortajarena wearing the all-black Octo L'Originale Chronograph © Bulgari

The brand

Bulgari has its own clear definition of excellence, which involves the perfect balance between design, added-value, quality of its products and its worldwide service. In the case of Bulgari watches, it all started with the Bulgari Bulgari watch that led to the creation of Bulgari Time in Switzerland in 1982.

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