The world of art is full of “one-of-a-kind” masterpieces – works so unique and moving that even the thought of them not being available for public enjoyment makes both the discriminating and casual enthusiast cringe. But the art world is rife with limited-edition lithographs, etchings, and artist-signed prints. So, too, in the realm of timepieces, the ability to acquire unique works of art does exist.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph
The combination of a chronograph movement, shockproof movement holder, titanium case, and a rubber strap with locking folding clasp all point to a watch built for action and able to withstand the limits of physical activity. The tourbillon function and double-regulated winding barrels are designed for ultra-precise accuracy and refine an already exceptional piece.
30 pieces produced
Westime Beverly Hills
DuBois et Fils Chronograph Big Date
This chronograph takes detail to a new level with an exquisite guilloche dial radiating to the outer edge of the watch face. A sunburst patterned outer ring ties the design of the piece together. A quick set, large date window balances the three chronograph dials creating an almost stadium-like appearance which adds to the sportiness of the watch.
99 pieces produced
Geary’s Beverly Hills
Thomas Steinemann, CEO of Dubois et fils SA
A Legacy of Time
After purchasing the oldest name in Swiss watchmaking (founded in 1785), the 56-year-old CEO has incorporated a modern concept to invigorate the brand: Crowdfunding. Bringing the DuBois legacy into the 21st century is Steinemann’s primary objective as the watchmaker concentrates on producing high-quality, limited-edition releases.
CSQ Why did you choose to use crowdsourcing as a credit source instead of a more traditional route?
Thomas Steinemann To re-launch a luxury watch brand requires substantive time, [and] institutional lenders always ask for short-term agreements and a high return on investment. To re-launch properly, we were certain the project required business structure with a long-term horizon. [Crowdfunding] is the best solution because of the probability, availability, and abundance of small investors. We have found this type of investor is much more interested in the personal and emotional relationship with the brand in addition to increased valuation of investment in the long term.
CSQ How does the firm’s historical pedigree figure in the current timepieces?
TS We started with a blank canvas. We developed a new logo and in all our work, we never looked back to the history of the brand in an effort to create an entirely new signature collection. Our timepieces today are understated and not over-designed, a definitive tactic to remain true to the product history of DuBois et fils. Since a very important element of the history of DuBois et fils [is] limited-edition watches, [we] are limited to no more than 99 pieces per style.
CSQ What key U.S. markets are you targeting in 2015?
TS DuBois et fils is partnering with select watch stores in U.S. major cities including Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Chicago, and Las Vegas. All of our watch retailers will be integrated into our online shop so that they are not competitors; instead, they are partners. [The] advantages [are] less investment, less inventory risk, and a much higher margin. Our new retail system is built for the future.
F.P. Journe Octa Automatique Lune
Fifty years ago, France became the first Western power to open diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China. To mark this glorious anniversary, F.P. Journe has created a limited-edition timepiece to be presented to a select group of the high-level participants.
The 40mm platinum case is adorned with the quintessential Journe blue dial, and a small gold logo commemorates the 50 years since this historic event. A proprietary 292-piece movement with gold winding rotor and moon phase further enhance the distinctiveness of the watch.
8 pieces produced
F.P. Journe Boutique, West Hollywood
Jaeger Le Coultre Duometre A Quantieme Lunaire
With a pure white dial fashioned from Grand Feu enamel, this JLC epitomizes the essence of haute horlogerie – a beautiful timepiece that pushes the technical precision of mechanical timekeeping. The piece has two separate power sources: one for time and one to operate the calendar functions. A jumping seconds-hand mechanism combines the two separate movements into one 367-part masterpiece.
200 pieces produced
Jaeger LeCoultre Boutique, Beverly Hills
Jaermann & Stübi Ben Crenshaw Limited Edition
The official timepiece of the St. Andrews Links Trust, Jaermann & Stübi, in connection with the Outpost Club (a rare American golfing society), has released a timepiece that promises to pique collector interest. The individually numbered cases are fashioned out of the melted-down irons that Ben
Crenshaw used to win the World Cup of Golf at Royal Melbourne in 1988. The watch features a unique green face with orange accents, and the date window appears as a white cup resembling the hole on a putting green. A generous portion of the profits will benefit the First Tee Program and come with a letter of authenticity signed by Crenshaw himself.
55 pieces produced
One Singular Sensation
Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda Mambo
Created in honor of the 2014 Montreux Jazz Festival, this piece uses an exceptional form of wood art called marquetry. The watch face, which features a Cuban musician playing the guitar, is finely carved out of different species of wood, which are skillfully combined to create the image. Each type of wood used is chosen for its individual characteristics: pear wood is similar to the texture of skin, while burr walnut contains folds that resemble fabric. The watch features a stunning hand-wound tourbillon movement with two barrels and a weeklong power reserve.
1 piece produced
/ $300,000 (approximate)
Inquire with David Orgell Beverly Hills