Chronopassion #FollowLolo in Geneva: Laurent Picciotto’s picks
Exclusively for WorldTempus, the president and founder of Chronopassion reveals his favourite watches, picked out from the aisles of the SIHH and from other exhibitors in Geneva.
He may have maintained a rather discreet presence at the SIHH and in Geneva, but once again he will constitute a key element of the commercial strategy of the exhibiting brands. Who is he? Laurent Picciotto, haute horlogerie champion and opinion leader, founder and president of Chronopassion. Throughout the week, he remained in the wings, assessing the new watches on offer, expressing his appreciation (or not), and placing orders (or not).
With his first few words, Laurent Picciotto dropped something of a bombshell: “We immediately saw which brands were doing well and which weren’t,” he confided. And in a few merciless asides, off the record, he indicated which watchmakers’ ships were sinking, with little hope of rescue.
Nevertheless, his eyes still twinkle with enthusiasm for some of his protégé watch brands. The first of these is Audemars Piguet. We know that Laurent Picciotto and François-Henry Bennahmias enjoy a close personal relationship. His opinion on their products reflects his approval for the company’s strategy. “The limited editions for the 25th anniversary of the Royal Oak Offshore are very well done. They’re interesting, complicated and aesthetic.” He admits to noticing the tourbillon chronograph but also, more surprisingly, he confesses to having ordered a women’s model, despite this not being his chosen domain. “I make an exception for the Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon,” Laurent Picciotto explains. “It’s an exceptional piece. It’s powerful.”
Royal Oak Concept Tourbillon © Audemars Piguet
The wonders of titanium
It seems like it’s impossible to go wrong with titanium. Laurent Picciotto has his sights on the more contemporary but classic Guilloché Ricochet Black Prince by Czapek, also in titanium. The 42 mm timepiece retains the house identity, with the power reserve/day at 5 o’clock, while offering a modern approach in an extremely lightweight package. “It’s a crossover piece: it’s elegant with a sporty touch,” is Laurent Picciotto’s analysis.
Guilloché Ricochet Black Prince © Czapek
The attraction of titanium is also apparent over at Hublot, in the limited series created by Richard Orlinski. “This piece really brings something to the Classic Fusion. The choice of titanium is a good one, it produces a sculptural but very light piece. And I love the titanium gorilla that’s wearing it!”
Classic Fusion Aerofusion Richard Orlinski © Hublot
Being sensitive to materials, Laurent Picciotto is also seduced by the Girard-Perregaux Three Bridges in ceramic. “It’s a very angular, graphic, light and contemporary piece,” he explains. Chronopassion’s final pick is the Endeavour Flying Hours by H. Moser & Cie. Laurent Picciotto appreciates its mechanical genius, a clever nod to Audemars Piguet’s famous Star Wheel from the last century.
Neo-Tourbillon with Three Bridges Skeleton © Girard-Perregaux
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