Laurent Ferrier: Traditional Watchmaking In A Modern World

Not many five year old watch companies have the respect of the entire industry, but then again not everyone is Laurent Ferrier.

After climbing the ranks at Patek Philippe to become technical director, he left the company just two years before retirement to start his own eponymous brand dedicated to traditional watchmaking.

Each timepiece features a movement that is hand finished and hand assembled by a single watchmaker. Each is hand placed into the hand-finished case – with every attention paid to detail.

With just seven watchmakers on board, the brand remains true to Ferrier’s dream of hand craftsmanship, traditional elegance, precision movements and extremely limited production. In fact, the company builds just about 100 watches annually — each piece individually unique.

Among the stars of Laurent Ferrier’s show is the Galet Classic Tourbillon Double Spiral, a certified chronometer with double inverted hairsprings (sometimes referred to as a balance spring) to keep the balance regulated to extreme precision.  Also notable is the Galet Secret – a watch that features a shutter-type dial that – with the click of a pusher – the shutter opens three-quarters of the way to reveal another dial design beneath. These are custom made timepieces.

It is in the Galet Micro Rotor and Traveler where prices become somewhat more attainable for the avid collector.  The Micro-rotor movement features a pawl-fitted unidirectional winding system while the Traveller, as its name indicates, offers a dual time zone display that can be changed either forwards or backwards in one hour increments. It is the result of two years of R&D. These two timepieces offer top-tier technology and performance in harmoniously elegant cases.

All Laurent Ferrier timepieces are crafted out of noble metals only and hand finished to perfection. The opening price is for the Micro-rotor, at about $53,000. The newer Traveller (with dual time zone) retails for about $68,000.  The Classic Tourbillon is $208,000, and the extremely elaborate Secret watches retail for quite a bit more. But to own one of 100 pieces made annually may well be worth it – especially when you see what’s being unveiled later this month at BaselWorld.


Via A Timely Perspective

Roberta Naas