A Touch Of Glitter
August 5, 2020

Tour De Excellence

Tour De Excellence

The Tourbillon remains one of horology’s most delicate and complex mechanisms, one that remains the ultimate symbol of watchmaking excellence

When it comes to the haute horologie, the tourbillon remains one of the key components of a mechanical watch that never fails to instil excitement. Developed in 1795 by Louis Breguet, the tourbillon, which means French for whirlwind, was designed to mitigate the effects of gravity on the movements of a watch.

Today, over two centuries later, the tourbillon continues to be the benchmark in mechanical watchmaking, due to its effectiveness as well as accuracy. Today, tourbillon watches are not just mechanical movements to marvel at but they also remain components that are extremely hard to make.

For many watch brands, a tourbillon is often made the centrepiece of a timepiece but some have managed to elevate its design to make the mechanism standout even further. These are some of the coolest tourbillon watches that have been produced.

Ballon Bleu de Cartier Flying Tourbillon Watch

The Cartier Ballon Bleu is one of Cartier’s most iconic timepieces. However the Ballon Bleu de Cartier Flying Tourbillon watch has certainly given the beloved model a bit of a revised edge. Featuring a 39mm case in 18k pink gold, the model is equipped with a manual winding calibre 9452MC. The main distinctive feature is the flying tourbillon complication with seconds indicated by the C-shaped tourbillon carriage. It lends a distinctive appeal to the model complementing the overall design of the Ballon Bleu, especially the slate-coloured galvanised guilloché dial as well as the blue steel sword-shaped and fluted crown in 18K pink gold with a blue sapphire cabochon.

IWC Portugieser Tourbillon Hand-Wound

With an 18kt rose gold case the IWC Portugieser Tourbillon Hand-Wound epitomises both class and style in a quality timepiece. The heart of the watch is undoubtedly the flying minute tourbillon located at 9 o’clock, which exudes horology mastery in its finest form. The overall ensemble is further accentuated with a silver plated dial with rose gold hands, Arabic numeral hour markers as well as minute markers around the outer rim. A small seconds sub-dial is also located at the 6 o’clock position. Housed within the 43mm case is a manual-winding Calibre 98900 movement with a 54 hour power reserve.

Panerai Luminor Tourbillon GMT

The Panerai Luminor Tourbillon GMT is a rare timepiece that has pushed the boundaries of watchmaking and technical excellence.  Aficionados will no doubt appreciate this high complication watch fitted with a skeletonised dial that showcases the P.2005/T calibre at work, especially with all its fascinating details laid bare to be admired. But upon closer inspection the beauty of the piece also lies within the materials used in the construction of the movement. The tourbillon calibre as well as skeletonised bridges and plates as with the 47mm case, are all made out of titanium, which has helped reduced the weight by as much as 35%.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon

The Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon embodies watchmaking tradition as well as the best qualities of Jaeger-LeCoultre such as a classic design, unmatched reliability and amazing performance. The watch is certainly illustrious in form, enhanced no doubt with its beautiful 40mm pink gold case. It’s also remarkably thin at 11.3m. The layout of the dial is effective and distinctive with large refined hour-markers complementing the sunray-brushed finish of the calibre plate as well as the gold bridge of its tourbillon. Powered by a Calibre 978G automatic mechanical movement, the Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon is good for a 45-hour power reserve.

Omega De Ville Master Chronometer Central Tourbillon

Trust Omega to introduce the first-ever Master Chronometer certified manual-winding central tourbillon wristwatch to the world. That said, the De Ville Tourbillon Master Chronometer is essentially an object of art and pure technical mastery. Omega has in the past produced centrally mounted tourbillon watches but for this edition, the maisons redesigned the Caliber 2640 to ensure that it would be able to function under a magnetic field of 15,000 gausses. Now in addition to delivering chronometer level accuracy, it also boasts a Co-Axial movement with a 3-day power reserve. The ensemble is presented in an immaculate 43mm diameter two-tone case crafted from 18kt Canopus and Sedna Gold.

Parmigiani Tonda 1950 Tourbillon

This timepiece from Parmigiani Fleurier is a marvel of ingenuity as it features one of the world’s thinnest automatic micro-rotor movements with a flying tourbillon. It also boasts an ultra-light tourbillon cage made out of titanium. Technical mastery aside though, the Tonda 1950 Tourbillon remains a very elegant and slim dress watch blessed with a classic design that will never wane or go out of style. A Calibre PF517, automatic winding movement with a 42-hour power reserve works the functions of the watch. The Tonda 1950 Tourbillon arrives in a 40mm case made out of gold with a choice of dials including a Galaxy version, which showcases the tourbillon flying in an aventurine sky.

When it comes to the haute horologie, the tourbillon remains one of the key components of a mechanical watch that never fails to instil excitement. Developed in 1795 by Louis Breguet, the tourbillon, which means French for whirlwind, was designed to mitigate the effects of gravity on the movements of a watch.

Today, over two centuries later, the tourbillon continues to be the benchmark in mechanical watchmaking, due to its effectiveness as well as accuracy. Today, tourbillon watches are not just mechanical movements to marvel at but they also remain components that are extremely hard to make.

For many watch brands, a tourbillon is often made the centrepiece of a timepiece but some have managed to elevate its design to make the mechanism standout even further. These are some of the coolest tourbillon watches that have been produced.

Ballon Bleu de Cartier Flying Tourbillon Watch

The Cartier Ballon Bleu is one of Cartier’s most iconic timepieces. However the Ballon Bleu de Cartier Flying Tourbillon watch has certainly given the beloved model a bit of a revised edge. Featuring a 39mm case in 18k pink gold, the model is equipped with a manual winding calibre 9452MC. The main distinctive feature is the flying tourbillon complication with seconds indicated by the C-shaped tourbillon carriage. It lends a distinctive appeal to the model complementing the overall design of the Ballon Bleu, especially the slate-coloured galvanised guilloché dial as well as the blue steel sword-shaped and fluted crown in 18K pink gold with a blue sapphire cabochon.

IWC Portugieser Tourbillon Hand-Wound

With an 18kt rose gold case the IWC Portugieser Tourbillon Hand-Wound epitomises both class and style in a quality timepiece. The heart of the watch is undoubtedly the flying minute tourbillon located at 9 o’clock, which exudes horology mastery in its finest form. The overall ensemble is further accentuated with a silver plated dial with rose gold hands, Arabic numeral hour markers as well as minute markers around the outer rim. A small seconds sub-dial is also located at the 6 o’clock position. Housed within the 43mm case is a manual-winding Calibre 98900 movement with a 54 hour power reserve.

Panerai Luminor Tourbillon GMT

The Panerai Luminor Tourbillon GMT is a rare timepiece that has pushed the boundaries of watchmaking and technical excellence.  Aficionados will no doubt appreciate this high complication watch fitted with a skeletonised dial that showcases the P.2005/T calibre at work, especially with all its fascinating details laid bare to be admired. But upon closer inspection the beauty of the piece also lies within the materials used in the construction of the movement. The tourbillon calibre as well as skeletonised bridges and plates as with the 47mm case, are all made out of titanium, which has helped reduced the weight by as much as 35%.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon

The Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon embodies watchmaking tradition as well as the best qualities of Jaeger-LeCoultre such as a classic design, unmatched reliability and amazing performance. The watch is certainly illustrious in form, enhanced no doubt with its beautiful 40mm pink gold case. It’s also remarkably thin at 11.3m. The layout of the dial is effective and distinctive with large refined hour-markers complementing the sunray-brushed finish of the calibre plate as well as the gold bridge of its tourbillon. Powered by a Calibre 978G automatic mechanical movement, the Master Ultra Thin Tourbillon is good for a 45-hour power reserve.

Omega De Ville Master Chronometer Central Tourbillon

Trust Omega to introduce the first-ever Master Chronometer certified manual-winding central tourbillon wristwatch to the world. That said, the De Ville Tourbillon Master Chronometer is essentially an object of art and pure technical mastery. Omega has in the past produced centrally mounted tourbillon watches but for this edition, the maisons redesigned the Caliber 2640 to ensure that it would be able to function under a magnetic field of 15,000 gausses. Now in addition to delivering chronometer level accuracy, it also boasts a Co-Axial movement with a 3-day power reserve. The ensemble is presented in an immaculate 43mm diameter two-tone case crafted from 18kt Canopus and Sedna Gold.

Parmigiani Tonda 1950 Tourbillon

This timepiece from Parmigiani Fleurier is a marvel of ingenuity as it features one of the world’s thinnest automatic micro-rotor movements with a flying tourbillon. It also boasts an ultra-light tourbillon cage made out of titanium. Technical mastery aside though, the Tonda 1950 Tourbillon remains a very elegant and slim dress watch blessed with a classic design that will never wane or go out of style. A Calibre PF517, automatic winding movement with a 42-hour power reserve works the functions of the watch. The Tonda 1950 Tourbillon arrives in a 40mm case made out of gold with a choice of dials including a Galaxy version, which showcases the tourbillon flying in an aventurine sky.