Bulgari Bulgari - an Italian icon

Bulgari Bulgari - an Italian icon

Bulgari Bulgari an Italian icon

28 November 2013 | Bulgari , Watch Reviews , Events

Bulgari Bulgari – an italian icon

On 23 November, there closed in Milan, an exhibition of some pieces that have marked one of the most famous, if not the most famous collection of Bulgari watches: the Bulgari Bulgari collection. It is one of those cases where an "experiment" is so successful as to become a commercial success. A success that has been going on since 1975. Because this is the year that the maison realizes the Bulgari Roma, a digital gold watch mounted on a braided string, produced in only 100 copies and intended, as a gift, to the 100 most exclusive customers of the boutique. And that took inspiration from Roman coins with the effigy of the emperor, embellished with annular engravings to indicate the prestige.

Bulgari Roma horbiter

In a such unexpected way, the Bulgari Roma proved to be a huge success and the continuous requests from watch lovers who would show up at the boutique to buy it, pushed Bulgari towards the making of a series destined to retail, with analog display, with the Bulgari Roma name and same engraving, exclusively available at the boutique on Via Condotti.

It was the beginning of a phenomenon. That engraving on the bezel was an original trademark, a blend of classicism and simplicity, timeless, and so it was that Gianni Bulgari, then head of design, invested in this model, changing the name to Bulgari Bulgari and proposing for the first time an entire range, consisting of case diameters between 23mm and 33mm, always marked by 3 distinctive elements: round case, engraving on the bezel, indexes at 12 and 6 in Arabic numerals. And it anticipated the modern logics of branding: the mark, proposed in dimensions that would seem excessive even today where in watches everything is oversized, unless you make the element integrated into the design. Genius.

From then on only a crescendo, the Bulgari Bulgari becomes an icon, which in my vocabulary, without opening the thesaurus, it translates into "timeless classic”. However, to figure it out every time I undergo a simple test: I close my eyes, I try to become estranged, and watching the watch as if it had been shown to me for the first time. If you think it is contemporary and you are ready to take it from the display and put it on, it means it is immune to the passing of time. The Bulgari Bulgari makes exactly this effect: just spoiled by the fact that modern collections have larger diameters and some innovative materials, but otherwise always equal to itself and always modern.

The story tells of a number of forms: colour variations, squelette dial, new materials and diamonds. And today that Bulgari is a true manufacture, it combines the timeless design with technical content of due respect as the caliber BVL191, only time with a power reserve of 42 hours and instant date change at 3 o'clock. This goes up to the tourbillon complication by utilising the technical integration with Daniel Roth and Gérald Génta, going through the chronograph version which I believe is for a man the most successful, because it has an exemplary neat dial and uses, as the only time, a slightly curved case to better adhere to the wrist, with the added pleasure of a chrono function and a movement, the BVL328, also made in-house. One final note which deserves attention: Bulgari, with this model, was the first maison to propose the "courtesy" watch Bulgari Bulgari in plastic, to customers who brought their Bulgari Bulgari to assistance for routine maintenance. Guess what? People liked it so much (a limited edition run was then proposed) that customers did not want to return it...

(Photo credit: Horbiter's proprietary photo-shooting)

Raffaella R. @Horbiter - Watches & Luxury

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