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An epic twin regulator built from Czapek's original pocket watch design
The story of the Czapek Place Vendôme Complicité is both a human story as well as a technical and artistic one. For Czapek, the independent maker's own suppliers are also partners in creativity and this turned out to be decisive in Place Vendôme Complicité ever becoming a reality — no thanks in part to the insight and expertise from collaborator and master watchmaker Bernhard Lederer.
Named after the Parisian square where François Czapek opened a boutique in the mid-19th Century (which is assumed to be the first Haute Horlogerie boutique ever on this famous square), the Place Vendôme Complicité is an evolution of Czapek’s renowned initial models, Quai des Bergues and Place Vendôme; the movement architecture of those pieces translates into a distinctive Czapek ‘face’ with exhibition "sub-dials" for each of the regulating organs at the 7.30 and 4.30 positions on the dial.
The principle of the double escapement regulator is that, with two balance wheels beating independently, and power delivered from a single barrel via a differential, any variation in rate (which may be caused by gravity or various other factors inherent in everyday life) will be cancelled out, thus ensuring greater timekeeping accuracy.
With the double escapement at its heart, Czapek’s new in-house Calibre 8 is manually wound to provide a power reserve of 72 hours, which is indicated on the dial at 6 o’clock between the balance wheels. Naturally, haute horlogerie finishes abound, with traditional handcrafts complemented by more contemporary decorative finishes – not only on the dial side but also on the back of the movement, where 18 inward angles have been hand-bevelled. Two sapphire bridges reveal the entire gear train on the dial side, protected by a box-style sapphire crystal glass. Lastly, the crown wheel mechanism – a hidden signature of Bernhard Lederer – is integrated into the movement design as a subtle tribute to his contribution to the development of Complicité.
Adding contemporary style, the hands are sword-shaped and open-worked, so as not to obstruct the view of the mechanism, and their shape is echoed by the applied hour markers. All are plated in gold to match the case material and tipped with luminescent coating to enhance legibility in low light conditions. In true Czapek style, some almost-hidden details have been added purely for aesthetic effect; for example, looking deep into the movement reveals that the post on which the hands are mounted has been open-worked to create a tiny ‘arcade des heures’ (arcade of the hours).
Perhaps of utmost importance, a relatively compact and very wearable 41.8mm diameter – is a distillation of Czapek’s signature iconography, with sharper lines adding contemporary flair. Completing the ensemble, an alligator strap that matches or closely complements the color of each dial is fastened with a gold folding clasp.
- 18K rose gold with domed sapphire and sandblasted hollowed-out lugs
- Two variable inertia balance wheels oscillating in opposite directions, with four adjustment screws and four weights
- Hours, Minutes, Seconds & Power reserve indicator
- Hand-beveling on bridges and main plate, 18 inward angles hand-chamfered
- Limited edition of 50 pieces
- Calibre 8 created in collaboration with Bernhard Lederer
- Double escapement with differential gearing and central second
- Balance springs with Breguet terminal curves
- Two Sapphire bridges with six rubies set in gold chatons
- Power reserve: 72 hours with one barrel spring
- Frequency: 3 Hz (21,600 VpH)
Case & Bracelet
- 41.8 mm diameter (lug-to-lug: 48mm, 14mm thick)
- Sandblasted strechers on case flanks
- Curved sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides
- Sapphire crystal case back with anti-reflective treatment on both sides
- Water-resistance: 50 meters (5 atm)
- Strap: Alligator with matching 18K gold folding buckle
- Open-worked with double escapement on a ’Grainé’ main plate with blue or silver galvanic treatment
- Circular-grained minutes and hours track
- Partially skeletonized sword hands
- Faceted mirror-polished indexes in gold
Toppers is excited to offer a free extended warranty on the purchase of new watches. This warranty begins when the manufacturer's warranty runs out. As such, Topper Fine Jewelers will provide an additional non-transferable warranty for a period of one year.*
*Restrictions Apply. Service provided anywhere other than at Topper Fine Jewelers or a service center of the original manufacturer is not covered and shall void the warranty. Topper Fine Jewelers will have sole discretion to determine whether the work for the warranty will be performed "in house" by Topper Fine Jewelers or at a repair facility of our choice. The limited warranty does not cover bracelets, crystals, batteries, or any damage to the case or movement caused by moisture that might have entered the watch as a result of improper handling, nor does it apply, on a more general basis, if there is evidence of misuse or abuse. Only Topper Fine Jewelers will determine at its sole discretion to repair any watch under this warranty.