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February 12, 2024

One-off Watch from Girard-Perregaux Features 1,791 Diamonds

The exclusive edition of the Laureato 34 is adorned with 1791 diamonds to mark the year of the brand's founding.

By Ellys Woodhouse

Diamonds, famously, are a girl’s best friend. If such a saying is true, the owner of the latest watch from Girard-Perregaux‘s social circle is about to expand tenfold. The luxury Swiss watchmaker has unveiled a one-of-a-kind expression of its legendary Laureato model. Housed in a pink gold case, the Girard-Perregaux Laureato 34 mm High Jewellery is adorned with 1791 brilliant-cut diamonds and features a crown set with an amethyst. 

That striking number of jewels carries more significance than its sheer abundance. In fact, 1791 marks the milestone year that founder Jean-François Bautte, at just 19 years of age, signed his first watches in Geneva – the Laureato 34 mm High Jewellery is presented as a special timepiece to celebrate the occasion. 

[See also: Louis Vuitton Announces Winner of First-ever Watch Prize]

Traditional grain setting has been used to enrich the dial, bezel, case and bracelet with a sea of brilliant gems, each of which required hand-drilling the pink gold exterior to accommodate and ensure the optimal fit of an individual diamond.

It’s a meticulous and time-consuming process, where the gold is carved to form four grains of metal around each diamond and the hallows are smoothed to create a sublime beading effect. Taking 86 hours of hand-setting to encrust the brilliant piece, it stands as a testament to the artisan’s exceptional skills. 

The crown is set with a cabochon in amethyst. A semiprecious stone that is synonymous with purity, protection and tranquillity, its vibrant shade of plum sits in contrast against the dazzling bed of diamonds. 

[See also: Girard-Perregaux Reveals Green Laureato with Aston Martin]

Meanwhile, the mechanics of the Laureato remain timeless, with its groundbreaking quartz movement and intricately formed case. Since its release in 1975, the masterful use of shapes has meant the Laureato has always stood out from the crowd. The octagonal bezel sits atop a circular plinth, which in turn rests upon a tonneau-shaped case. This design, with its elaborate profile and many facets and angles, produces pockets of light and shade – the addition of so many diamonds only accentuates its play with light. 

The Laureato 34 mm High Jewellery is available from the Girard-Perregaux boutique in Geneva, operated in partnership with Bucherer. Price is available on request.

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