Here is the Gerald Genta Grande Sonnerie with a hidden Tourbillon. Clearly not a conservatively designed watch but one for the well heeled who wants something different from the rest of the crowd with high crowing factor of being a member of the rarefied million dollar watch club.
The movement is entirely conceived and crafted at the le Sentier workshop and offers:
- Grande Sonnerie and Petite Sonnerie (Westminster carillon with four hammers)
- Silence setting, which stops the sonnerie or carillon mechanism
- 48-hour power reserve display for the movement
- Power reserve display for the sonnerie-14 hours for Petite Sonnerie and 18 hours for Grande Sonnerie (automatic sonnerie, without manual activation)
- Minute repeater, and
- Retrograde hour and minute dial in a window.
Check out my series of images HERE
This Grand Sonnerie watch comes at the list price of S$1.56million. Genta is little known outside the circle of serious collectors for its prowess at complications. In actual fact, it shares a lot of its skills with its stablemate Daniel Roth and both have high street credibility for being watch houses that delivers serious watches for the discerning collector.
In part, it is probably due to the more designs today as well as its historical roots to Mickey Mouse but it is renowned in Europe for its more progressive R&D in materials and movement designs. Here is a comparison image of the Genta Sonnerie with a new Gefica Bronze.
Do come back soon to see my photomontage of the Genta Sonnerie.
(Thanks to Mr Alan Teo (Hour Glass Millennia) and to Hour Glass Singapore for allowing me to photograph these watches on their premises.)
Late last week was the opening of a weeklong of events conducted by Jaeger-LeCoultre in Singapore at the Ngee Ann City front. A pair of giant dome tents had been put up to house the rare JLC watch exhibits and to conduct the Watchmaking Masterclass for the assembly of the Caliber 7751 column wheel choronograph, decorative engraving, and seminar presentations on their latest achivements - the Gyrotourbillon 2 and the Duometre Chronograph.
For a detailed report and photographs over a few days of the week long celebrations, check out Raphmeister's report HERE
For serious collectors, a grand sonnerie is the pinnacle complication and only a very small handful of brands are able to produce such movements. Grand Sonneries are able to chime every quarter much like a grandfather clock. It can also perform on demand like a minute repeater. With so many watch houses that churn out tourbillons of late, it is the repeater and more so a Grand Sonnerie that is the ultimate complication to be acquired. Grand Sonneries whether new or old are themselves rare but one made with exquisite craftsmanship with less than 10 ever made - and in such pristine condition, makes this watch truly special - regardless of the brand.
While this grand pocket watch is not how most would wish to carry a timepiece, this antique is clearly a beautiful work of art which makes it all the more awe worthy to note that it was made almost a hundred years ago. One can appreciate the quality of the sound of the gongs - its pitch, clarity and resonance only after listening to several repeaters to understand the vast variance in quality of repeater gong chimes. I have heard a few and this Patek is a real surprise. Hearing it clearly chime every quarter during the photo shoot, it made me realise in retrospect how little has changed in terms of horological quality over past 100 years.
to see my collection of images of this Grand Sonnerie.
Thanks and gratitude to the very fortunate collector and gentleman - who asked to remain anonymous - for permitting me to photograph his watch.