The Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly
Artistic depictions of butterflies have been used in many cultures including, as early as 3500 years ago, the Egyptian hieroglyphs. In the ancient Mesoamerican city of Teotihuacan, the brilliantly colored image of the butterfly was carved into many temples, buildings and jewelry. So it is not a surprise that also watch brands use nowadays these animals to decorate their timepieces. Omega was inspired by the Chinese culture, where two butterflies flying together symbolize love. “The Butterfly Lovers” is for example a Chinese folktale, which picks these animals out as a central theme.
Omega interpreted the butterfly theme in a really nice way because the design of the De Ville Prestige Butterfly is way tasteful. The butterflies are just on the dial and quite subtle. Depending on the model you choose they are more or less apparent at first glance. The Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly is the latest addition to the elegant Prestige collection.
The watch I’m writing about features a white mother of pearl dial which is decorated with a polished butterfly theme enhanced by a transferred outline and a matt background. There are eight diamond indexes and a round date window at 6 o' clock. The 18K red gold bezel is applied to a 32.7mm stainless steel case, but as far as I am concerned, I would have preferred if the case would be made just of red gold. As red gold-plated are the hour markers that complement the polished and domed Roman numerals placed at 3, 9 and 12 o’clock. This model is also available with a case crafted from 18k yellow gold and stainless steel or just stainless steel, some of them being embellished with diamonds. The hour makers are, depending again on the model, yellow gold or rhodium-plated.
The Co-Axial caliber 2500.
At the heart of automatic Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly beats the Co-Axial caliber 2500 which features a three-level Co-Axial escapement and a free-sprung balance. The biggest outcome, when using this technology is, as Omega claims, less wear and tear on the lubrication, resulting in longer service intervals. The Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly comes therefore with a full 3-year warranty.
The Omega De Ville Butterfly Quartz.
The Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly Quartz includes models with a size of 27.4mm as well as 32,7mm and a Quartz movement. While the watches with the Co-Axial caliber are just available with a white mother of pearl dial, those equipped with the Quartz movements feature a champagne or silvery dial. The cases are made of stainless steel or boast a bicolor combination of stainless steel and 18K yellow or red gold. When it comes to the butterfly dial, designers have used a decorating technique known as Ramolayage, or “pounced ornament”. Ramolayage is a mechanical Guillochage technique where the artist engraves the butterflies in a special way to get a 3-D shape.
The polished and domed Roman numeral indexes are plated with rhodium, red gold or yellow gold to perfectly match case and bracelet. Faceted hour, minute and seconds hands match the material of the hour indexes. The dial is also available with eight diamond indexes and Roman numerals at 3, 6, 9 and 12 o’clock. The Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly is available with a polished or 56 diamond-set bezel featuring a polished crown and is presented on a polished bicolor or stainless steel “Prestige” bracelet or a satin-brushed leather strap with a white mother-of-pearl effect.
The Omega Quartz caliber 1376 powering this timepiece is protected by a vertically brushed case back embossed with an image of Chronos (the god of time), which is a nice detail. Every model of the Omega De Ville Prestige Butterfly collection features a domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides and is water resistant up to 3 bar.
Reasons for the price differences.
The watch we got hands on retails for 4,790€, which is the entry level price tag for a model from the De Ville Prestige Butterfly collection equipped with a Co-Axial escapement. The price is reasonable if we consider it actually adopts such a special movement. Nowadays there are more and more blogs out there asking for female watches with high end technical features and we pride ourselves to have been among the very first to “ask” for them. Omega is paving the way as the brand perfectly blends technicality with a feminine design.
The price is, therefore, justified in my opinion. The most expensive models are those timepieces that come with a 56 diamond-set 18K gold bezel, a two-tone gold-steel bracelet and a 36,8mm case size as they retail for 11,795€. If you are however captured mostly by the butterfly design and its Ramolayage technique you could go for the models equipped with the Quartz movement, which are available at a starting price of 3,850€.
For further information please visit the official Omega Watches website.
(Photo credit: courtesy of Omega Watches; Horbiter®'s proprietary photo-shooting)
Nicole Kirbach @Horbiter®