For the connoisseur of fine watches who must have the absolutely finest timepiece available at any price, Cartier has created the brand’s most complex achievement ever. The Rotonde de Cartier Grande Complication Skeleton watch packs a perpetual calendar, minute repeater, flying tourbillon and more into a 43.5mm platinum case.
The Rotonde de Cartier Grande Complication Skeleton watch combines technical expertise with craftsmanship for a timepiece that will accurately give the date, day and month until the year 2100 with no correction necessary, provided it is wound once per week. The mechanical movement with manual winding is comprised of 457 parts including 37 jewels for 21,600 vph and a power reserve of eight days.
On the outside, this Cartier beauty sports a platinum case with snailed gold counters, gold flange with sunray effect and black transferred Arabic numerals, apple-shaped hour and minute hands of blued-steel and hammer-shaped hands in the small counters. The strap of black alligator skin has a double-adjustable platinum folding buckle. The list of complications includes tourbillon, perpetual calendar, single push-piece chronograph and skeletonized movement.
According to the Cartier website, “Skeletonizing the movement and decorating it by hand requires almost 200 hours of work by our finest craftsmen, followed by another 200 hours by our master watchmakers for its assembly. As a final touch, the mirror polish added by hand to the tourbillon bridge in the form of a C affirms the Cartier signature.”
Now back to that skeltonized movement and how it displays the complications. From the rear, the tourbillon is clearly visible at 12 o’clock with the hammers of the minute repeater at six o’clock and the indications of the perpetual calendar floating on round dials above the components of the movement.
Those components are also visible from the front through the dial, which also reveals the calendar and two horn shapes framing the tourbillon. If the Grande Complication has a drawback, it’s the way that the dial can be difficult to read in low light despite the blued hands.
If looking at these photos has you ready to add the Rotonde de Cartier Grande Complication Skeleton to your collection, be advised that this is an extremely limited edition model with only 50 numbered pieces available at $620,000 each.
Burberry Previews Iconic Check Collection
The brand Burberry has always been known for its check designs that can now be seen in much more than just raincoats. Burberry CEO and chief creative officer Christopher Bailey has designed a pair of exclusive new watches called the Iconic Check collection which were inspired by the trademark pattern of the fashion house.
The Britain Icon Check for Men Limited Edition is a 45mm watch with a manual-winding mechanical movement and woven check-shaped skeleton dial fashioned from anthracite. Only 20 pieces of this limited edition timepiece will be available.
The Britain Icon Check for Women Limited Edition features a 38mm case of solid 18K rose gold with diamond and mother-of-pearl set dial and diamond set bezel. This dial of this watch is also inspired by the Burberry check with 245 diamonds set into an interwoven grid design with mother-of-pearl pieces separating the gems. Another 124 diamonds are set into the bezel. This watch is a limited edition that is made to order.
Both of these timepieces will go on sale in the spring.