Call this GF watch "ol' blue eye" like I did and you are sure to gain points with the brand. They call it "magic." We can both refer to it as Royal Blue - and beautiful. While not the most technically complex new Greubel Forsey watch of 2012, this one is probably the prettiest. It is a limited edition (duh) version of their existing Tourbillon 24 Secondes watch and it took my breath away (and potentially my life savings a few times over).
The formal name of this piece is the Greubel Forsey Tourbillon 24 Secondes Contemporain with Royal Blue dial. It features just one tourbillon (!) that is placed at a 25 degree angle. The tourbillon rotates once each 24 seconds unlike most that rotate once each 60 seconds. Greubel Forsey really seems to dislike one minute tourbillons.
According to Greubel Forsey it took a long time to get the royal blue dial color just right. It is a specially colored metal the requires precision to produce. The result is bloody gorgeous and those lucky enough to own one of these will likely wear it often to admire the piece. The case is in wonderfully polished platinum and is 43.5mm wide and just over 15mm thick. It has a demanding presence on the wrist. Often times I think of Greubel Forsey as the anti-Patek Philippe watch brand. They share much of the same values but a totally different product presentation ethos.
Blue mixed with white gold or platinum can have excellent results as seen here. The case is beautifully finished with an engraved "message" on both sides done in tiny, but legible letters. On the wrist, the piece is comfortable despite the heft of the large platinum case.
Inside the watch is a mostly titanium movement. Relatively simple by Greubel Forsey standards, the movement is comprised of 267 parts. 88 of those parts are in the tourbillon assembly alone. The movement features the time, tourbillon, subsidiary seconds dial, and power reserve indicator. The manually wound movement has 72 hours of power reserve. The movement surfaces, bridges, and parts are all carefully finished and polished by hand.
My favorite part about the watch aside from the blue dial is that Greubel Forsey does not dick around with legibility. The hands are easy to see and there is a full scale of hour and minute indicators around the dial. They are actually placed on a sapphire crystal ring that floats around the outer dial. The effect is impressive and helps add depth to the already very deep looking dial. Another sapphire crystal piece is elegantly used as the tourbillon bridge. This allows for a much better view of the tourbillon in action. The hints of red on the dial are an appreciated touch and help identify the watch as a Greubel Forsey. I am pretty sure that the hands and other applied elements on the dial are in gold.
Detailing and finishing on the Tourbillon 24 Secondes Contemporain is extremely impressive, but should be given the price and pedigree of the brand. Greubel Forsey will make just 33 pieces with this special blue dial and the price is about $500,000.