With the new Carl F. Bucherer Alacria Swan (Ref. 00.10702.02.90.27) model, the Swiss watchmaker adds a high-jewelry piece to its collection of ladies watches. With its white gold case paved with highest-grade diamonds, this is so far one of the most stunning jewelry items from the brand that makes even this $500,000 Girard-Perregaux Cat’s Eye Tourbillon Haute Joaillerie (ref. 99498B53P7B1-KK7A) look sort of cheap.
If you are more or less familiar with current Carl F. Bucherer Alacria model range, you will immediately notice that the watch sports the same white gold body and bracelet as the rest of the family, but is extensively adorned with hundreds of diamonds.
According to official specs, the Alacria Swan is painstakingly hand-set with whole 1330 diamonds: 348 of the are set on its butterfly-shaped body, 844 on the bracelet, 137 stones on the dial and one diamond on the setting crown.
Sure, the watch doesn’t look as imposing as models set with baguette-cut diamonds, but it is still a beautiful piece of work, which is supposed to match similarly styled jewelry (like, say, their current Lacrima earrings that, too, combine white gold and diamonds.)
It is also a pleasure to note that the watch not only looks great, but also offers an adequate level of legibility: its blue hour and minute hands look very contrast on the glowing background of precious stones and white gold.
The press release doesn’t specify which kind of movement powers the watch, but I guess that the model probably sports the same ETA 280.002 Swiss made quartz movement as the rest of Alacria line*.
As far as collectability is concerned, I have doubts that it will start to gain in value any time soon. First of all, given the materials used and the pedigree of the brand, it will surely be ahem fairly expensive and, with a total production run of eighty eight pieces, I don’t think that the watch will be sold out during the first 15 minutes of it going in boutiques around the world. The second reason is, of course, the caliber: with a relatively inexpensive, mass-produced quartz mechanism that beats inside this Alacria Swan (Ref. 00.10702.02.90.27,) this is primarily a jewelry item that serious watch collectors will not be especially interested in for the next 50 years or so.
Of course, that’s just an opinion, but that’s what you came here for: my opinion, right? Um… Right? Anybody?
Photos: Carl F. Bucherer
* UPDATE ON CALIBER & PRICE: According to Carl F. Bucherer press service, the wristwatch is animated by what they prefer to call “Caliber CFB 1850” quartz movement. Although they still don’t say a word about the origin of the caliber, it is fairly obvious that they don’t make their own quartz mechanisms, so I still assume that it is the aforementioned ETA 280.002 caliber. As for the price, the MSRP on this beauty is set at predictably high $180,000, which seems to be more or less adequate for a watch that features so many high-grade diamonds and is crafted from a slab of 18-carat white gold.
Carl F. Bucherer Alacria Swan (Ref. 00.10702.02.90.27) quartz ladies watch specification
Price: $180,000 (MSRP)
Movement: Quartz, Caliber CFB 1850, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: No data
Movement decoration: No data
Functions: Hours, minutes
Power reserve: A couple of years
Case material: 18-carat white gold, set with 348 TW vvs diamonds (3.30 carats)
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Rectangular
Bezel shape: Rectangular
Case size: 38.00 mm x 25.50 mm
Case height: 7.40 mm
Lug width: No data
Dial: 18-carat white gold, set with 137 TW vvs diamonds (1.20 carats)
Hour markers: None
Hands: Blue, open-worked
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: 18-carat white gold set with 844 TW vvs diamonds (8.70 carats)
Crystal: Sapphire, domed, antireflective on both sides
Case back: Solid, engraved