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Czapek - The Gleam of Gold

Czapek The Gleam of Gold

Czapek is introducing two new Faubourg de Cracovie models that are a delight for the eyes

Despite the rain falling in Geneva (Switzerland), a detour to the Czapek boutique in the company of its CEO, Xavier de Roquemaurel, brightened things up considerably. WorldTempus was given the opportunity to admire the latest creations from the Geneva brand, hot from the oven and fresh in the shop, having arrived that very morning. So let’s cut to the chase, and take a closer look at these new Faubourg de Cracovie watches.

The Gleam of Gold

Faubourg de Cracovie Océan d'Or, yellow gold @ WorldTempus/Jordy Bellido

A new material

The main difference from previous models is the presence of 18 karat gold, used for the 41.5 mm case and the chronograph registers on the dial. The counters are polished to retain their colour and ensure it doesn’t degrade as a result of the Newton effect. Previously, Czapek used exclusively steel and titanium. Never one for half measures, the brand has opted to bring in two types of gold: 5N rose gold and 2N yellow gold. In fact, this is the very first time yellow gold has featured on a Czapek wristwatch! The rose gold version comes in an 8-piece limited edition, while the yellow gold version is issued as a “mirror piece”. You might be wondering what that is, exactly. Well, I had no idea either. Let me explain. In Chinese culture, and more precisely during the Qing dynasty, the concept of “duality” became very important. Like Yin and Yang, the symbols of complementarity, everything has its opposite. So, in accordance with this mirror principle, these watches come in a pair, but they’re not absolutely identical. Czapek drew inspiration from this historical idea in designing the Faubourg de Cracovie Océan d’Or limited edition, which comes in a matched pair. Each watch has a different dial; they are symmetrical, but not identical.

The Gleam of Gold

Faubourg de Cracovie Océan d'Or, yellow gold @ Czapek

A stunning contrast

The beauty of these pieces, which can be found “at the intersection of opposition and harmony,” as Xavier de Roquemaurel states, lies in the contrast created between the gold case and the blue dial, which is further accentuated by a blue alligator strap. To be clear: the deep, intense blue of the dial on this 2021 version is not the same as that of the 2019 Faubourg de Cracovie (with its salmon-coloured chronograph counters). I asked the question – and I got the answer. The dial of this new model, with its “Resonance” guillochage motif, gets its particular shade of blue from a very special technique. Here goes: this unusual shade is the result of an ALD coating process, which involves applying infinitesimally thin layers at a molecular level. The contrast enhances the elegance of the new models, as well as giving them a rather majestic aura. The effect is of almost pharaonic opulence.

The Gleam of Gold

Faubourg de Cracovie Océan d'Or, yellow gold @ Czapek

Beneath this stunning exterior, the automatic integrated chronograph (priced at CHF 46,000) conceals a powerful heart, which is visible through the sapphire caseback: the SXH3 calibre. The COSC-certified movement beats at 36,000 vph or 5 Hz, and its single barrel supplies a power reserve of 65 hours.

De l’or au poignet

Faubourg de Cracovie Océan d'Or, rose gold @ Czapek

With the entry of these new kids on the Faubourg de Cracovie, the sister collections are bound to feel a touch of jealousy. But I have a feeling we haven’t heard the last of them. Watch this space.

 

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The brand

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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