The IWC Portofino Chronograph Edition "150 Years"
The sea is not a new theme to Horbiter® - we have been sailing with a watch on our wrist from the moment the Eilean, the historical sailing ship appearing in the Rio video by Duran Duran, was purchased by Panerai - IWC’s Italian cousin - and we will continue to do so with original projects that will take shape in the coming months.
What links together the IWC Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years and the sea? It's simple enough; its name takes inspiration from one of the most famous villages in Italy, the Northern Capri, as I like to define this small and elegant fishing village that lies a few miles away from S. Margherita Ligure and that boasts a natural alchemy with the sea and some type of classic boats.
The Apreamare Gozzo - when a 10-metre boat can boast the authoritativeness of a yacht
The idea of the Gozzo did not come to me by chance. What the Aprea family has been doing since taking over the reins of the family brand when the Ferretti Group moved into Chinese hands is what I consider the latest example of the skill of our entrepreneurs.
If I had to make a comparison with the yacht brand that fascinates me the most, I would think of the Wally Yachts shipyard, because the Gozzo by Apreamare is a small masterpiece of design (10m approximate) that has already scooped numerous international awards before even entering the water and it transmits the same class that the IWC Portofino collection has been transmitting since its launch on the market.
This was what pushed me to get in touch with the historic Neapolitan shipyard and to carry out this project, thanks to a friend and entrepreneur that put me in touch with Giovanni Aprea who, curiously, has a great passion for the brand from Schaffhausen.
Apreamare and Portofino are linked together by tradition and discrete elegance, the Gozzo and the Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years are the spearheads of the respective collections of these two brands. It might be a case, but Giovanni Aprea wears a Portugieser Chronograph on his wrist every day.
About the Gozzo - it is not just any boat, but a gliding ‘gozzo’ boat retailing at an attack price of 300,000 euro and infinite possibilities for customization. Its most powerful version, the VP D3-200 (VP stands for Volvo Penta) boasts a peak speed of 31 knots. But the speed in the water is not everything - the boat was designed by the famous design studio Victory Design and the Gozzo features exterior and interior finishes that make it more similar to super-yacht than a classic boat with a usability that no yacht could ever boast.
We crisscrossed Italy looking for the only Apreamare Gozzo already launched on to the market to take a picture of the Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 years
The Gozzo is so new and its crafting process so refined that the Apreamare shipyards have so far delivered only the first boat. The lucky owner is an entrepreneur who moored the boat in the small port of Maratea, called the "Pearl of the Tyrrhenian Sea", a small town of 5,000 inhabitants that became a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This is where we organized the photo-shoot of the IWC Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years. We were so attracted by the Portofino Hand-Wound Edition 150 Years in Geneva that we almost "forgot" that even the most classic of the Portofino watch - the chronograph - was declined by IWC in the Jubilee Edition as it happened for many other classic and sports model. The 150 Year Edition brings along a blue lacquered dial crafted according to an original process where several layers of lacquer are put together to create that particularly bright shade of blue.
The concept of "manufacture" does not involve the mechanics only and they are well aware of that, in Schaffhausen, where they are gradually reopening their archives to discover everything that Florentine Ariosto Jones crated or left as an inheritance. The IWC Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years has the formal balance of one of the most classic watches loved by those who own or would like to own an IWC, because its 42mm-case was developed in the golden era of classic chronographs.
Details make the real difference
Details have always made the difference between a standard product and a special series. The Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years features a different dial than a classic Portofino Chronograph, the colour of the Santoni strap is a particularly dark blue and the case-back is decorated with the official 150 Year-Old logo created by the digital design team led by Christian Knoop.
It is the same principle that Apreamare applied to its Gozzo - a project that has raised the bar of the Apreamare production and expanded the spectrum of use well beyond the gliding gozzo boats segment.
Next Stop: the Laureus F1 Charity Night
After a first appointment on the Paul Ricard racing circuit as guests of IWC and Mercedes Petronas F1 and a summer preview in one of the most beautiful places in Southern Europe, it is time to say goodbye for exactly a month. There are still many projects that link us to the brand from Schaffhausen that we will visit in mid-September and before that date an important event awaits us - the F1 Charity Night at the Vetra Theater in Milan on August 30th. It is a dinner gala organized by Laureus Italia and this year Valtteri Bottas will take part in it and IWC will display a one-piece-only platinum Portofino. On the other hand, the IWC Portofino Chronograph Edition 150 Years is already available in the brand boutiques around the world but hurry up as this Jubilee version with the enamelled blue (or white) dial will be crafted in only 2,000 pieces.
(Photo credit: Horbiter®'s proprietary photo-shooting)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®