Friday, September 20, 2019

Why the Watch World Needs Stefano Macaluso

Regular readers will know that Girard-Perregaux has long been a personal favorite.  But not unlike the awkward kid with a crush on the head cheer-leader, that love was not always reciprocated ; )

I visited the GP HQ on one occasion some years ago and it left a lasting impression.  And if ghosts do exist, and I mean that in the absolutely most positive way, the ghost of Luigi Macaluso most definitely frequented the halls of the buildings in La-chaux-de-fonds.  If a corporate office could be said to be a romantic place?  Well GP was the watch fan's equivalent of Paris in Spring.

Curious to relate, I only recently met (at least face to face) another key person from Girard-Perregaux, Stefano Macaluso, this past March when he participated in the Henki Time podcast.  What was striking to me in that conversation was that although he was no longer with Girard-Perregaux (at least insofar as the daily operations although I believe that his family still holds a stake in the brand), was what I can only call a romantic notion about Girard-Perregaux.  And thank God for that.

In an age where watch brands are, in effect, losing their collective shit about what to do next, throwing money at influencers, slashing their advertising budgets with traditional media and dumping their over production wholesale into the grey market, here was a quiet, contemplative man speaking thoughtfully about the family business.  Other watch executives leave (or get asked to leave) a position and they take off on booze and drugged fueled jags.  Mr. Macaluso?  He grabs his bicycle and his sketch book and travels the world, documenting his impressions, and sharing them via instagram and facebook.  Many of us locked in our jobs had the opportunity to travel vicariously through him this past summer.  I guess my point here is that he is something outside of the mold of what is typical in the watch business.  

Whether it is a G-Shock you were given as a 10 year old, or your father's watch that you inherited when he passed on, watches do more than measure the time of our days, they mark the times of our lives.  And it is hard not to be romantic about that.

Now I am 51, no longer a young man by any stretch of the imagination, but I still feel those stirrings in that place where my heart (alleged by some not to exist) resides when it comes to some things, and Girard-Perregaux is one of them.  In all honesty?  We don't need more celebrity ambassadors, more watches made from "unobtainium", more limited-edition-partner watches with "watch news" (excuse me while I die laughing) outlets.  We need more artists, more poets, more dreamers.  The watch world needs people like Stefano Macaluso to remind us of the value of beauty, of thinking, of listening and of dreaming.

For now, something simple from GP to inspire.  Not too much, not too little, but to quote that other great commentator on watches, Goldilocks:

"This one is just right."

Courtesy of Girard-Perregaux

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The Quai des Bergues Sapphire Blue S

From Czapek -

Courtesy of Czapek

The asking price is CHF 16,000, so for those of you with a Platinum Card and the inclination, here are the pertinents - 

- Hours, Minutes & Seconds
- Small second at 7h30
- Power reserve indication with weekdays at 4h30

- Calibre SXH1: Haute Horlogerie proprietary
mechanical hand-wound movement
- Power-reserve > 168 hours (7 days) on 2 barrel-springs
- Frequency: 3 Hz – 21,600 VpH
- Diameter: 32 mm – 14 lines 1⁄4
- Height: 4.75 mm

- Double open ratchets, sandblasted bridges, blue screws, bevelling, final anglage 'main'

- Exclusive XO stainless steel “Revolution” case
- 38.5 mm diameter
- Curved Sapphire crystal with anti-reflective
treatment on the inside surface
- Sapphire crystal case back with anti-reflective
treatment on the inside surface
- Water-resistance: 50 meters (5 atm)

- Alligator strap with stainless steel pin buckle

- Blue handmade “Flinqué” enamel dial
- Czapek exclusive Ricochet® design
- Czapek typical elongated Roman numerals

- Rhodium plated steel hands

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Worth Your Time - Wind Vintage

In a world where the line between "pre-owned" and grey market have become blurred beyond recognition, it is nice to know that there is still someone out there who is doing things in an honest, straightforward manner.  Eric Wind (below) is the proprietor of Wind Vintage, a place where you can obtain some truly wonderful watches with some true history behind them.
Courtesy of Wind Vintage
Wind Vintage, at least as near as I can tell, does not rely on a lot of hyperbole. Visit their web shop and you will quickly realize that it is a fairly simple proposition. If you're after that "BNIB" (Brand New In Box) light-grey market Omega, Zenith or Breitling, then he is probably not your go-to. But thank goodness for the rest of us that he is out there doing what he is doing!

A quick perusal of the Wind Vintage offerings this morning reveals an Angelus Chronodato, an Audemars Piguet by BVLGARI 1941 Coin Watch, and a personal favorite - an RCAF Birks Chronograph.

It is clear that Mr Wind is one of the few people in the watch business who will Sherlock Holmes the shit out of a watch search and find a piece that is far beyond the ordinary. Just the antidote in a world full of sameness.

You can check out Wind Vintage here -

We'll be reaching out to Mr. Wind to see if we can get an interview, or get him on the podcast, but if you are a fellow who appreciates the real deal, lively-up yourselves and check out Wind Vintage.