On the Insight Micro-Rotor Lady's first birthday, Romain Gauthier is back to present the latest version to this extraordinary range of haute horology woman's watches with this incredible blend of watchmaking, design and precious materials.
If you weren't familiar, last year Romain Gauthier unveiled their first ever watch catered for the woman's market, the Insight Micro-Rotor Lady in 2 versions. Both featuring rose gold cases, striking mother of pearl dials and a diamond set 22k gold micro-rotor. An incredible statement of taste both in watchmaking and design, this was by no means an "understated" or "quiet" watch, and that's exactly why I loved it. This wasn't just a simple quartz watch covered in diamonds and on a pink strap to be labeled for the ladies market, but instead a pure piece of watchmaking that is modern in design & correctly on trend with the materials and colours chosen. Those pieces were limited to 10 pieces each and with this latest version being launched only a year later, I think it's safe to assume that the first versions were a success.
The opal dial
The lapidary carefully cutting out the dial covers from the fragile opal stone. - Credit Romain Gauthier www.romaingauthier.com
Limited to 5 pieces, this new release is basically the same as last years versions, featuring a 39.5mm rose gold case and movement with the classic Insight Micro-Rotor off-centre dial design & incredible in-house movement. The only difference being that the dial, subdial and mainplate cover is now covered by beautifully hand-finished opal, which flashes pink, green, purple and turquoise tones. With opal being renowned as extremely difficult to work with due to its innate fragility it's clear that Romain Gauthier is really pushing the fact that collectors need to take notice of this young brand.
The dial side of the stunning Insight Micro-Rotor Opal. - Credit Romain Gauthier www.romaingauthier.com
Aside from the clever design and choice of materials, it's important to talk about the absolutely insane movement that is powering this watch.
An in-house, automatic movement featuring a perfect view of the 22k gold & diamond set micro-rotor which effortlessly glides between the friction minimizing ruby bearings to power the double mainspring barrel up to an impressive power reserve of 80 hours. All bridges are incredibly hand finished with straight graining and stunning anglage allowing for a great 3 dimensional view of the movement which really puts the skill of the watchmakers on show. The movement beats at a modern 28,800 vph and you get an enchanting view of this from the exposed balance wheel which contrasts amazingly against the opal mainplate cover. All in all this watch is an amazing choice for any woman looking to make a statement and who can really appreciate the level of skill that has gone into creating a watch of this caliber.
The caseback side of the stunning Insight Micro-Rotor Opal. - Credit Romain Gauthier www.romaingauthier.com
Features and indications
Off-centre hours and minutes, central small seconds
Australian crystal opal dial and mainplate cover
18k red gold hands
In-house, automatic movement featuring
22k gold bi-directional micro-rotor
Micro-rotor snow set with approx. 45 brilliant, round VVS to VS diamonds of varying sizes (0.1 carat)
Double mainspring barrel in series for generous 80-hour power reserve
Movement and finishing
Dimensions: 32.1mm x 6.8mm
Power reserve: 80 hours
Number of jewels: 33
Number of components: 206
Balance frequency: 28,800 vph / 4Hz
Components in: 22k gold micro-rotor, steel, stainless steel, beryllium copper, brass and Germansilver
Finishing: Highest-level haute horlogerie hand-finishing
Treatment: 5N red-gold treated bridges
Dimensions: 39.5mm x 12.9mm at highest point
Water resistance: 50m/5atm/170ft
Sapphire crystal with interior anti-reflection coating, front and display back
Crown for winding and time-setting at 2 oclock
Strap and buckle
White strap in natural rubber with red gold pin buckle
95,000 CHF, excluding taxes.
Another shot of the lapidary carefully cutting out the dial covers from the fragile opal stone. - Credit Romain Gauthier www.romaingauthier.com
I think this is an extremely well executed example of haute horology, which elegantly blends the lines of a watch being a stunning piece of artwork and actually wearable. The movement has been designed around function, use and longevity. While the materials and finishing combine to create extreme depth and playful character, making the best use of the light around it to bring elements of the watch alive that would usually be hidden or left out. Due to the incredible movement architecture you get a full view of the craftsmanship and skill that has gone into making the watch, which I think helps justify the pretty high price tag. This is truly a unique offering, and one that I'm sure will be appreciated by many high-end female collectors who have long been left out in the world of haute horology. I am very excited to see this watch during Baselworld 2019 to see all of these amazing details in the metal, be sure to stay tuned to the WatchGecko blog to hear more about the 2019 Romain Gauthier releases as we handle them during the epic March show!
If you would like to read more about this collection you can visit the Romain Gauthier website here.
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