Introducing Gucci’s 100th Anniversary High Watchmaking CollectionBy Bhanu Chopra
Gucci has embraced the watch as a stylish accessory since 1972, and has been quite successful in the timepiece and jewelry market throughout the decades that followed. As part of their 100th anniversary celebrations, creative director Alessandro Michele is elevating the Gucci timepieces with a collection of highly technical watches ranging from tourbillons to jumping hours, while maintaining his signature eclectic sense of style.
The Italian fashion house is part of the Kering Group, which also has Ulysse Nardin and Girard-Perregaux in their stable. Understandably, Gucci is leveraging on the watchmaking expertise within the Kering umbrella, under the creative direction of Alessandro Michele, known for his maximalist designs.
The GUCCI 25H is a familiar 1970s-inspired sports watch and is Michele’s first foray into high-end watchmaking. The watch was presented during a digital event in April, and it heralded Gucci’s first cooperation with Kering’s in-house watchmaking expertise. The GG727.25 movement is an ultra thin automatic at 3.7mm. The watches feature a visual of seamless vertical lines within the integrated bracelet and the dial. The time-only GUCCI 25H is available in steel, with and without diamonds. The tourbillon complication is available in platinum and yellow gold.
There is much ado about the numbers in the caliber name GG727.25 that are important to Michele. The seven represents completeness, the two brings a sense of balance and cooperation, and the five symbolizes curiosity and freedom.
The time-only versions of this watch are priced at EUR 8,200 in steel and EUR 10,500 in steel with a diamond-set bezel (approximately USD 9,700 and USD 12,500, respectively). The tourbillon versions are at EUR 120,000 in yellow gold and EUR 170,000 in platinum (approximately USD 142,000 and USD 201,000, respectively).
G-Timeless Dancing Bees
In Michele’s flourishing Gucci Garden, bees are a sign of nobility. The G-Timeless Dancing Bees model is available in different designs that focus on the exposed tourbillon at 12 o’clock amongst a field of 12 bees that dance and shimmer across a hardstone dial in a choice of different stones. The bees swing on a pivot point, creating a sense of movement and life with each motion of the wrist.
This watch is a fun coupling of an imaginative whimsy of design and the highly technical tourbillon. The Dancing Bees model is available in two visual styles, with and without a jewel encrusted case, including an option with a fully diamond-set bracelet.
Prices are within a range of EUR 115,000 to EUR 195,000 (approximately USD 136,000 to USD 231,000).
G-Timeless Automatic with Bee Motif
The second series in the G-Timeless collection, the Automatic with stationary bee motif, simplifies the dial by removing the tourbillon and brings a touch of flash with a triangular toothed golden inner bezel. The jeweled hardstone dials and precious skin straps offer a combination of more color and texture to complete the perfect accessory look.
he third option in the G-Timeless line is an automatic edition encrusted with white diamond with finished with an emerald green alligator strap. The bees and stars in other collections find their way here as they surround the dial, creating a dazzling display of monochromatic texture that uses light for a sense of movement and life. The blued steel hands bring a sense of playful color and give a remarkable legibility to the timekeeping.
G-Timeless with Moon Phases
The final G-Timeless model has a quartz movement and introduces a moon phases complication in three mystical- inspired options. They each feature jewel-encrusted cases and leather straps. Circling the moon phase disk is G-Timeless Pavé encrusted with white diamonds , creating a dazzling display of monochromatic texture the Latin phrase, Sine Amore Nihil, which translates to “Nothing Without Love.” The moon phases are central on the dial, playing with a touch of color at the heart of dark or light mother-of-pearl. The dial is decorated with stars, planets, diamonds and precious gems that sparkle against the opalescence of the stone.
The G-Timeless with moon phases has a recommended retail price of EUR 32,000 (approximately USD 38,000).
The new vintage-inspired automatic versions of the Grip take a turn toward the unconventional in terms of traditional watch style. The timepiece features a jumping hour movement disk and a sweeping minutes disk in a unique time display of dual curved apertures. The custom-cut hardstone dials are available in malachite, onyx, tiger’s eye or brushed gold, and are encased in 18K gold with 44 neatly arrayed baguette-cut diamonds. The three colorful hardstone Grip are paired with a color-coordinated alligator leather strap, while the all-gold Grip is paired with a 18k gold bracelet.
The Grip is priced within a range of EUR 150,000 to EUR 250,000 (approximately USD 178,000 to USD 296,000).
Gucci’s Green Initiatives
Alessandro Michele has created an interesting collection centered around haute horology and iconic Gucci style.
In addition to creating a collection that elevates Gucci watches from beautiful jewelry to horological mastery, there is an underlying sense of responsibility to the ethical sourcing of materials. Gucci ensures that 100 percent of their gold is certified by the Responsible Jewelry Council Chain of Custody certification scheme to guarantee verified responsible sources, and they follow the Kering Responsible Gold Framework to source gold in a responsible manner.
They also partner with the Responsible Jewelry Council for tracing diamond sources and certify their diamonds with the Kimberley Process that works to eliminate conflict diamonds from the market. For the stone work on their timepieces, they are working with other industry partners to enhance oversight of the precious stone supply chain.
The Gucci high watchmaking designs can be discovered by appointment at Gucci’s dedicated fine watch and jewelry boutique at Place Vendôme, Paris.