January 13, 2020
Dubai 2020, LVMH Watch Week. Taking place from January 13-15, is the first major watch show of the year and a possible bellwether for the future of the industry as brands begin to rely more heavily on self-hosted trade shows in lieu of the more traditional Swiss tentpole events, such as Baselworld and SIHH. Bulgari is one of the centerpiece brands on display at this new event, and as part of the array of timepieces announced for the show, the ornate women’s Divas’ Dream line has received three new models, including the world’s thinnest women’s minute repeater.
The undisputed crown jewel of this new collection is the limited edition Divas’ Dream Finissima Minute Repeater Malachite, which continues Bulgari’s recent slew of ultra-thin movement designs with the new in-house BVL362 handwound minute repeater movement. This dual hammer design measures in at just 3.12mm-thick, keeping the overall package svelte and allowing the design to take the title of the thinnest women’s minute repeater watch ever made. The case of the Divas’ Dream Finissima Minute Repeater Malachite, while measuring in at 9.4mm-thick, isn’t content with thinness as its only adornment. The 37mm 18k white gold case is fully snow-set with brilliant cut diamonds, accented by a larger faceted diamond in the crown. This diamond trend continues in the decorative charm at 8 o’clock, which references the Divas’ Dream’s signature fan-shaped lugs with a tiny fan rendered in green malachite fringed with more brilliant cut stones. The caseback is nearly the only place not adorned with diamonds, instead choosing a sapphire display window to display the record-setting movement within. The dial, cut from a vibrant green striated piece of malachite, is a beautifully dynamic piece in and of itself. This is further accented with diamond indices and a sub-seconds dial at 6 o’clock set with even more brilliant-cut diamonds. The tapering alligator leather strap picks up the rich green of the dial and adds one final set of diamonds courtesy of the encrusted deployant clasp. In total, the Divas’ Dream Finissima Minute Repeater Malachite is decorated with 336 diamonds, adding up to over four carats in weight. Only 10 examples of this limited-edition model will be made at a price of $219,900.
Bulgari takes a comparatively reserved approach to the second new Divas’ Dream model, the Divas’ Dream Peacock. Here, a mere 76 brilliant cut diamonds adorn the bezel and lug ends, allowing the 18 karat white gold of the case to shine through. The obvious highlight, however, is the dial. Made from a natural peacock feather, this iridescent surface is left without indices but begs the question of durability. It’s undoubtedly beautiful, but what happens in case of a shock? This is jewelry, of course, but a feather is even more delicate than the gold and jewel settings of the rest of the watch. Like its sibling, the Divas’ Dream Peacock comes mounted on a matching alligator leather strap, this time in navy blue, but the simpler three hand layout is powered by the in-house BVL191 automatic movement with a 42 hour power reserve. Bulgari has priced this model at $114,917.
Perhaps the most jewelry-focused of the new Divas’ Dream offerings is the new Divas’ Dream Lapis Lazuli. Here, the 37 millimeter case is rendered in 18 karat rose gold with brilliant-cut diamonds along the bezel and lugs, accented by a pink tourmaline embedded in the crown. The brilliant flecked blue of the lapis lazuli dial immediately takes the visual fore, its vibrant color competing slightly with the sparkle of the diamond hour indices. Unlike the Divas’ Dream Peacock, this model lacks a second hand for maximum dress appeal, which in turn helps to disguise the high accuracy quartz movement within. With the level of mechanical quality on display in the other two models, however, it’s difficult not view the inclusion of a quartz powerplant as a minor disappointment. This is by far the most modestly priced offering the lineup at $18,600.
This trio of new models are a clear indicator of the level of watchmaking and haute joaillerie the famous Roman marque are capable of and represent some truly elegant use of materials. For more information please visit the brand’s website.