Cartier Santos-Dumont returns, bigger and better than before
15 Feb 2020
LVMH Watch Week: Bvlgari Octo Finissimo
Part 1: Bvlgari Octo Finissimo comes in various new forms in 2020, released during the LVMH Watch Week in Dubai.
LVMH’s Watch Week in Dubai takes place, for the first time in over a decade when a Swiss watch fair is not presented in January. It is decidedly a more relaxed atmosphere but still a serious one. In his opening remarks, Bvlgari CEO Jean Christophe Babin noted that LVMH decided to hold their own watch exhibition in the first month of 2020 because it was important for their retailers to know early in the year what the novelties are going to be and for crucial watch media to plan editorial coverage for major highlights and novelties of the brands.
It wasn’t difficult to convince their sister brands, Zenith, TAG Heuer and Hublot to participate in the LVMH Watch Week because it would be held in the luxurious setting of a resort with attention focused on the novelties offered by the brands. Collectors and watch lovers can also begin their year with an idea of new releases and where to allocate their budgets.
LVMH will decide as a group whether to continue participation in Baselworld 2021 but for the moment, it appears that the perceived benefit of quality over quantity, at least in terms of brand experience for each of the participating LVMH specialist watch brands, appears overwhelmingly positive. With over 900 attendees and 150 crucial publications who “shape watch buying opinions”, joined with top 100 retailers representing 80% of the LVMH watch business, LVMH’s inaugural watch week was off to a good start.
New Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater in Rose Gold
Bvlgari’s impeccable feat of technical and aesthetic expertise finds new form in 2020, this time, their award-winning ultra-thin minute repeater comes in the guise of a matt, textured rose gold case. Featuring incised hour-markers like its carbon predecessor, the cut-out design serves to amplify resonance inside the case and thereby optimizing the sound effect.
New Steel and Gold Satin-polished, as well as Sand-blasted ceramic editions of the Bvlgari Octo Finissimo
The award-winning Octo Finissimo series is Bvlgari’s long term vision for building an icon embodying the pinnacle of masculine contemporary elegance. However, even Jean-Christophe admits that creating an icon is very difficult, so the brand studied supercars and world records so that extraordinary watches could be matched with extraordinary movements and extraordinary materials like carbon, titanium, and ceramics, which all add to the Octo Finissimo’s appeal amongst a community of watch connoisseur who already own many watches, hence, Bvlgari’s position on the Octo Finissimo is literally a “supercar” in the genre of sports watches and a watch icon for the 21st century.
Keeping with the supercar analogy, Bvlgari considers the next iteration of the Finissimo as the “granturismo”. Supercars equivalents of the Octo Finissimo, represented by ultra thin minute repeater and ultra thin Tourbillon editions, including 2019’s ultra thin chronograph GMT variant are designed for that elite niche of collectors and now with LVMH Watch Week, Bvlgari introduces a broader segment of granturismo editions, still pretty exclusive but eminently more accessible (read: affordable).
Accompanying new case material of the rose gold Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater is the introduction of two new satin-polished non-monochromatic timepieces: the Octo Finissimo Automatic Satin-Polished Steel and the Octo Finissimo Automatic Satin-Polished Rose Gold.
Finally available in steel yet beautifully polished and finished, the winning formula has been modified to include a screw-down crown to provide 100 meters water resistance. 2020’s Octo Finissimo has become the literal embodiment of a dressy, daily, dare we say, sports luxury timepiece, one that you can take to the pool or do a little scuba diving in. The sophisticated ultra-thin timepiece doesn’t exceed the thinness of its more expensive brethren but it is still proportionately elegant, while retailing for a wallet-friendly CHF 11,500 which really puts the timepiece ahead of its competitors. Even the gold editions of the Octo Finissimo are meant to be accessible, available on leather strap but on bracelet for the steel editions with rubber straps planned for both editions later this 2020.
That said, the real highlight is Bvlgari’s quiet introduction of a subtly gorgeous Octo Finissimo Automatic in Black Sandblasted-Polished Ceramic. The hardened material is recognized for its highly reflective sheen, but sandblasted and strategically polished, a new aesthetic results for an increasingly familiar watchmaking material. The result is a new signature look – monochromatic yet exhibiting matte and brilliant surfaces, thus reflecting light in a way that feels otherworldly and undeniably refined. It’s an understated yet immensely attractive with the added engineering feat of machining ultra-thin proportions for the hard-wearing yet brittle element.
Written by Jonathan Ho
Read on for more novelties updates during the LVMH Watch Week in Dubai:
Part 2 – LVMH Watch Week: Bvlgari Serpenti Tourbillon & Diva Minute Repeater
Part 3 – LVMH Watch Week: Zenith Defy Moonlight & Elite Moonphase
Part 4 – LVMH Watch Week: Zenith Defy 21 Land Rover & Carl Cox Edition
Part 5 – LVMH Watch Week: TAG Heuer Carrera 160 Years Silver Limited Edition