Bulgari Celebrates 40th Anniversary
Back in 1975, Nicola and Paulo Bulgari branched out into creating their very first men’s watch. Inspired by the style of ancient Rome, the timepiece had the shape of a large Roman coin with the words “BVLGARI” and “ROMA” prominently displayed in a classic typeface. The first Bulgari watch for men also had modern touches like a liquid-crystal display and strap of woven hemp and leather. The limited edition of 100 pieces sold out quickly, convincing the Bulgari brothers that they should be in the men’s watch business.
For their second series of men’s timepieces, the Bulgaris hired noted watch designer Gerald Genta, who redesigned the case with changes like a sweep seconds hand, four sizes and a logo of BULGARI BULGARI with two large dots separating the words. Version two also had a conventional mechanical movement, date wheel and hour and minute hands.
The success of Bulgari watches continued through the 70s and into the 80s, when the plastic models of the yellow gold timepieces became so popular with customers who had received them as loaners that in 1993 the brand introduced a limited edition retail version. The success of the sporty plastic models led Bulgari to launch a steel version followed by the Carbon Gold in 2005.
Now it’s 2015 and Bulgari is celebrating 40 years of making fine men’s watches with a pair of limited editions. Honoring the original Bulgari watch for men, the Finissimo and the Finissimo Tourbillon combine the “BVLGARI ROMA” bezel inscription with the styling of the Genta model. The Finissimo is powered by a BVL 128 hand-wound movement and has a high-gloss black dial with subsidiary seconds hand at 7 o’clock.
The Finissimo Tourbillon has the honor of being the slimmest tourbillon ever, with a pink-gold case just 5.4mm high. The flying tourbillon can be viewed through a dial aperture.
Each will be available in a very limited edition of just 100 pieces each.