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Czapek & Cie. - Place Vendôme "Lumières"

Czapek & Cie. Place Vendôme "Lumières"

Czapek & Cie unveils its latest creation at Baselworld 2017.

The new collection is named Place Vendôme, after the famous square in Paris where François Czapek, spiritus rector of the brand, opened a boutique in the mid-nineteenth century, assumed to be the first haute horlogerie boutique ever on this world famous square. The first line of watches in the collection features a one-minute suspended tourbillon. It comes together with a second time zone for today's world travelers, a day/night disk, and a classic power reserve indicator.

Even with the new functionalities, lovers of the brand will easily recognize the watch's unusual look with the two subdials at 7:30 and 4:30. On the Place Vendôme, a third has been added at 12 o'clock to display the time. The first series, which will come in a limited edition of ten pieces in platinum and fifteen in rose gold, was named "Lumières." It refers to both the reflections flashing off the beveled edges of the bridges visible on dial side as well as to the Age of Enlightenment, which ultimately produced the tourbillon.

Place Vendôme « Lumières »

"It was a big challenge and an adventure to create such a technically advanced timepiece," says Xavier de Roquemaurel, CEO of Czapek & Cie. "We relied not only our horizontal approach to watchmaking, which brings together a team of outstanding industry craftsmen, but also on the passion for haute horlogerie shared by all those who love and share in this project."

For the 2016 winners of the Public Prize of the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève, the Place Vendôme goes further into channeling the spirit of François Czapek. The characteristic grand-feu enamel of the Quai des Bergues is still used for the dial, as are the fine fleur-de-lys hands pointing to sleek Roman numerals.
They are now joined by an anthracite bead-blasted mainplate and suspended bridges of polished steel.

From a technical standpoint, the watch represents an evolution from the more staid, romantic Quai des Bergues. A day-night disc turning counterclockwise has inserted itself between the two subdials, which now carry the tourbillon on the left and the second time zone on the right. The power reserve indicator migrated and now peers out of the clock face at 12 o'clock.

Place Vendôme « Lumières »

The Place Vendôme "Lumières" is driven by the proprietary, manually wound SXH2 movement, developed by Chronode and Czapek & Cie, and beating at 21,600 vph (3 Hz). The single barrel spring delivers 60 hours of power. The 34.8-millimeter diameter is relatively large, but the height of 9.8 millimeters allows the watch to be discreet and elegant in spite of the many functions. The traditional satin-brushed bridges and openworked ratchet are back again. In the back of the watch is an inscription: Tourbillon suspendu – Ici et Ailleurs, a reference to the second time zone.

The Place Vendôme “Lumières” edition is limited to 25 numbered pieces - 10 pieces in platinum Pt950 numbered 1/10 to 10/10 (CHF 99,000) and 15 pieces in 5N rose gold numbered 1/15 to 15/15 (CHF 88,000). The watch is fitted with an alligator strap with 5N rose gold or platinum buckle.

Place Vendôme « Lumières »

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Czapek & Cie. harks back to the origins of one of the watch industry’s most prestigious names, which was born from the watchmaking skills of two Polish émigrés who sought refuge in Switzerland after Poland’s November uprising. 

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