It looks like a watch but it is not one. It's meant to be worn like a watch, but it is not one. It is made by a 'haute horlogerie' brand but has nothing to do with horology. What is it? It's a wrist toy meant for watchlifestylers who think that money is no object and that Hautlence refers to as "an entirely essential yet fundamentally useless object"; however, this useless wrist object sells for CHF 12,000 Swiss Francs —approximately $12,500 USD. Founded in 2004, Hautlence shook the watchmaking world by revolutionizing the way we tell time. This year during Baselworld 2016, Hautlence unveiled the Playground Labyrinth 01 & 02, a watchmaker’s invention that does not tell time and that costs a fortune for what it is.
The Hautlence Atelier Playground Labyrinth is an object that quickly became a conversation piece among journalists and watch collectors during the week of Baselworld. Back then, our reaction to it was very simple and we can summarize it in one sentence: 'If I were Sandro Reginelli CEO of Hautlence and I can sell a rich person a CHF 12,000 Swiss Franc wrist object that looks like an 'haute horlogerie' piece but that has no movement in it, why wouldn't I". Available in two versions cased in titanium —one with an 18K rose gold labyrinth ref. Labyrinth 01 and the other one with an 18K white gold labyrinth ref. Labyrinth 02—, this wrist toy will take you back to your childhood years when you used to play with those cheap plastic portable labyrinths.
Labyrinth may not tell the time; however, it is perfectly aligned with the excellence in watchmaking that is embedded in Hautlence's DNA. Moving the crown activates a clever mechanical lift, which feeds the ball onto the board using a camshaft system visible through the transparent backing.
The maze-like dial is carved in solid gold with a forged platinum ball. The titanium case is rectangular, going back to the brand’s roots. The Hautlence Labyrinth 1 & 2 is the ultimate luxury product, made according to the most authentic watchmaking traditions and using only the finest materials.
In a world dictated by time, Hautlence has launched the Playground collection, a collection of mechanical games in an attempt to buy stolen time. The collection is due to expand in the future and is guaranteed to surprise you, again and again: nothing less than what you would expect from a collection of never-ending time games. On the wrist, it wears like a watch with unparalleled wrist presence but light as a feather. Completely useless and boring after you've played with it a few times, it will serve you as a perfect reminder of how far we've gone into spending money in completely useless things when money is no object.
Sticker Price CHF12,000 Swiss Francs —approximately $12,500 USD. For more info on Hautlence click here.