In 2013, Jaquet Droz celebrates its 275th anniversary, maintaining the avant-garde spirit and refined taste of its founder, Pierre Jaquet Droz.
Pierre Jaquet Droz was born in 1721 in La Chaux-de-Fonds. At age seventeen in 1738, Pierre opened his first workshop for clock making and produced a series of grandfather clocks
with very sophisticated movements beyond anything that had
been produced earlier. A decade later, after losing his wife and daughter, Pierre built a special carriage to take six clocks to be sold in Spain. Upon his return to La Chaux-de-Fonds in 1759 and after his successful sales in Spain, he focused exclusively on making watches, clocks and automatons —a moving mechanical device imitating a human being that was a precursor to robots. In 1774, he successfully completed three humanoid automatons —The Writer, The Draughtsman and The Musician— that were presented in La Chaux-de-Fonds and a year later in France to Louis
XVI and Marie-Antoinette.
Years later, the Jaquet Droz fame and success reached the confines of Asia, to the point where the fifth emperor of the Qing Dynasty started collecting some of his masterpieces including clocks and automatons.
Acquired in 2000 by the Swatch Group, the brand returned exclusively to La Chaux-de-Fonds —after closing former operations in London and Geneva— and moved into its new 'Atelier de Haute Horlogerie' in the summer of 2010. Great timepieces have been presented since then including the Grande Seconde in 2002, the Eclipse in 2010 and the Bird Repeater in 2012.
The Jaquet Droz Tourbillon Réserve de Marche ref. J028033201 launched a few years ago —as part of the Complication La Chaux-de-Fonds collection— is one of the first Jaquet Droz watches to slightly move away from the utilization of the figure 8 on the dial configuration. Well, perhaps if we look at the dial upside-down, the figure 8 is still there.
The watch is fitted with a beautiful cutout and sectioned black Opaline dial with an off-centered hours and minutes sub-dial with roman numerals, a power reserve indicator
at 10, a retrograde date indicator at 2 and a tourbillon with vertically aligned bridge at 6 o'clock. The indicators are beautifully done in red gold and fitted with hands with red contrasting tips.
Featuring a massive 18K red gold case measuring 47mm in diameter, this watch is very large, yet extremely elegant. To complete the beautiful design of this timepiece, this watch is fitted with a very nice crown with the traditional Jaquet Droz stars. From the beginning, Pierre Jaquet Droz used two stars to authenticate his watches and they are now a focal point of the Jaquet Droz logo. If you were to draw a circle around each of the stars, you would create a figure eight.
The beating heart inside this watch is the manual-wound Jaquet Droz JD3 Tourbillon calibre with a power reserve of 88 hours when fully wound. The calibre is nicely finished with black 'Côtes de Genève' and the unmistakeable clover engraving.
Droz Tourbillon Réserve de Marche is fitted with a hand-stitched alligator strap that is very comfortable and flawlessly finished. This watch is a true example of 'haute horlogerie' and worth every penny of its sticker price.
Sticker Price $190,300 USD. For more info on Jaquet Droz click here.