Dubail Paris, a particularly expensive boutique, which is located on the famous Place Vendome, will soon start selling a limited edition version of the dressy Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Contemporaine Bi-Retrograde. Sporting the same hours and minutes, as well as days of week and date indicators, the Ref. 86020 differs from the 2010 model only with the choice of materials and color combinations.
Although the watch sported a beautiful design, I was not happy with the way the 2010 model looked. The silver opaline dial of the piece didn’t do a particularly good job as a background for the platinum hour and minute hands. This new version of the watch, however, features a much more legible choice of colors with the rose gold hour and minute hands and black calendar indicators looking contrast on the grey opaline face of the timepiece.
Comparing specs of the two watches, it looks like the new Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Contemporaine Bi-Retrograde for Dubail Paris is almost an identical twin of the other model save for the materials chosen for the body and elements of the dial and, of course, the color scheme.
According to official information, the watch is still powered by the same Caliber 2460 R31 R7 automatic in-house movement, which is built on 27 jewels, sports a more or less standard power reserve of 40 hours and features an impressive level of finish with meticulously guilloched 22-karat gold oscillating weight with classic barleycorn pattern, as well as with inevitable Geneva stripes and polished screw heads.
To understand the level of refinement of the mechanism, just consider that this beautiful specimen sports the legendary Poincon de Geneve (Geneva Seal) stamped on its mainplate. Reserved solely to movements made in Canton of Geneva, it ensures that the engine’s level of decor and finish applies to the highest standards. In many cases, timekeepers that sport this prestigious emblem have also been subjected to (an optional) rigorous examination as to its quality and precision, although I am not sure whether Vacheron Constantin has actually opted for the tests.
So far, the boutique will only receive 20 individually numbered pieces of the watch each priced at pretty much impressive €46,100.
Looking as dressy as it is, the watch (to a bit of regret) stays far away from the industry’s current golden standard of 39 mm. According to official specs, the new Patrimony Contemporaine Bi-Retrograde measures 42.5 millimeters 42.50 millimeters in diameter. While not as terribly huge as some “sporty” time measuring devices produced by some young watchmaking brands that are still to find their own design language and to acquire even rudimentary signs of good taste, this new device still will take a lot of space on your wrist.
The good thing about this model is that it is just 10 millimeters thick, which not only makes it comfortable to wear but also makes it look a lot more elegant. Also, the horns of the body are relatively short, so this somewhat compensates those extra millimeters of case’s width.
Photos: Vacheron Constantin / Dubail Paris
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 3/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Contemporaine Bi-Retrograde for Dubail Paris (ref. 86020) specification
Price: €46,100 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Caliber VC 2460 R31 R7, 5.40 mm high, 25.6 mm in diameter, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 27
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 40 hours
Movement decoration: Hand-decorated, gold oscillating weight
Functions: Hours, minutes, retrograde date, retrograde day of week
Case: Rose gold
Size: 42.50 mm
Case height: 10.00 mm
Dial: Grey opaline
Numerals: Arabic (date)
Hour markers: Rose gold
Hands: Rose gold
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Black leather
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective