Bvlgari Sets New Records with its Watches and Wonders 2024 Novelties

Discover Bvlgari’s latest Octo Finissimo and Octo Roma variants. The Tadao Ando X Serpenti collab pieces beautifully capture the transience of seasons
 Bvlgari Sets New Records with its Watches and Wonders 2024 Novelties
April 11, 2024
 Bvlgari Sets New Records with its Watches and Wonders 2024 Novelties

With the new Octo Finissimo Ultra COSC, Bvlgari has once again set a record for producing the thinnest watch in the world. The brand is showcasing a host of new launches in the Octo Finissimo and Octo Roma range. A new Serpenti collection in collaboration with famed Japanese architect Tadao Ando has also been released. GMT India takes a closer look at the novelties.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Ultra COSC

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Ultra COSC

Raising the bar when it comes to mechanical watchmaking, Octo Finissimo Ultra COSC boasts an ultra slim silhouette – even thinner than a coin. Measuring just 1.70 mm in thickness, the new Octo Finissimo Ultra is not just a razor-thin watch, but it is also the world's thinnest COSC chronometer. After achieving a remarkable thinness of 1.80 mm with the 2022 Octo Finissimo Ultra, Bvlgari's R&D department, in collaboration with Concepto, a watchmaking factory specialising in complex mechanisms, decided to push the envelope further. 

Octo Finissimo Ultra COSC boasts an ultra slim silhouette - measuring just 1.70 mm in thickness.

The process involved a rework of the case by optimising the sapphire crystal. When it comes to the structure, the caseback serves as the mainplate, upon which the 170 components of the manually wound BVL180 manufacture caliber are assembled. In order to exceed the precision of production resources, the components are selected using 1/10-micron optical measuring systems, so as to be able to select the parts that are closest to the perfect dimension. This COSC-certified mechanical movement adds to the complexity of the watch and marks a first for the Ultra line.

In terms of aesthetics, the use of ultra-light titanium for the case, dial, and bracelet has become Bvlgari’s hallmark for the Finissimo collection. It has also played a role in achieving the line’s record-setting slimness and winning over 50 international awards in 12 years.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Sketch in 18ct 5N Rose Gold.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Sketch

As the brand celebrates its 140th anniversary, it ventures into uncharted territories as it introduces a watch with an illustrated dial. The illustration reveals the movement’s back in lieu of the dial – as if you were admiring the watch from the other side, through an open caseback. 

Esquisse, from the Italian word "schizzo" meaning “sketch”, has been used throughout the history of art, particularly since the Italian Renaissance, in painting, sculpture, and architecture. In the olden days, sketches were associated with discoveries and used to document archives. Bvlgari has also been contributing to this cultural tradition for 140 years now.

Caseback of the Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Sketch

The first Octo Finissimo Automatic Sketch series will be available in two limited editions – 280 pieces in steel and 70 in rose gold. Here, the “dial” uniquely showcases the watch’s micro-rotor, escapement, bridges, rubies, and intricate finishing details such as Côtes de Genève. These intricate mechanics are sketched by the brand’s Product Creation Executive Director, Fabrizio Buonamassa Stigliani, blending technical mastery with artistic expression.

The 18 ct 5N rose gold version exudes monochrome splendour, from its polished and satin-finished case and bracelet to its captivating dial. This radiant piece subtly incorporates shades of grey on its hands and on the sketch, enhancing its elegance. 

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Sketch in Steel

The steel version, monochromatic as well, presents a more contemporary look, with dominant shades of grey like off-white for the sketch background; carbon, as if drawn by pencil; charcoal for the hands; and, of course, steel for the case and the bracelet. 

Measuring 40 mm in diameter and 6.4 mm in slimness, each model is powered by the in-house BVL 138 caliber offering up to 60 hours of power reserve. The sapphire caseback is uniquely etched with "Edizione Limitata" and "1884 – 2024" to commemorate Bvlgari's 140th anniversary, making each watch a celebration of heritage and craftsmanship.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Sketch

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Sketch

In keeping with the brand’s innovative approach, the Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Sketch features a 43 mm polished steel case with a slimness of 8.75 mm to house its GMT chronograph complications. Limited to just 140 pieces, this edition depicts a sketch featuring the key elements of the dial and the back of the movement. It skillfully blends the iconic Tri-Compax chronograph display (GMT at 3 o'clock, a 30-minute counter at 6 o'clock, small seconds at 9 o'clock) with a balance represented between 4 o'clock and 5 o'clock, the emblematic column wheel at 8 o'clock, and exquisite finishing details on the bridges and gears. 

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Sketch

The open caseback reveals the original BVL 318 caliber with the special markings, "EDIZIONE LIMITATA" and Bvlgari's anniversary, "1884 – 2024." The automatic manufacture movement with a peripheral oscillating weight offers a 55-hour power reserve. 

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon in rose gold.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon

The brand has also released the new Octo Finissimo Tourbillon models with unprecedented configurations. The Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Manual in rose gold is charming and captivating, not only because of the slimness of its movement (1.95 mm) but also due to its featherlight feel. The watch is housed in a 40 mm case with alternating satin and polished finishes. The skeleton tourbillon reveals its complex mechanism: the BVL 268SK manufacture caliber. This flying tourbillon movement is accentuated by a microblasted grey finish and offers a power reserve of 52 hours.

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon in platinum.

On the other hand, the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Automatic houses the automatic BVL 288 manufacture caliber (1.95 mm) in a microblasted blue finish. The 40 mm platinum case (4.95 mm thin) alternates between satin and polished surfaces, revealing all wheels and gears – including the flying tourbillon at 6 o'clock – that drive this ultra-complex mechanism.

Octo Roma Automatic Steel DLC

Octo Roma Automatic Steel DLC

Offering a fresh take on the Octo Roma, the latest release is an automatic model with a three-hand-and-a-date display. Retaining its 41 mm diameter, the variant features a minimal, clean dial with the Clous de Paris pattern, a signature of the Octo Roma. The black DLC finish lends the watch a dual nature: from a distance, its black appearance is perfectly uniform; up close, however, each pyramid-shaped Clou de Paris captures light from its own unique angle, ensuring a distinctive reflection. The dial comes alive as a visual delight for its beholders.

The watch runs on in-house BVL 191 movement offering a 42-hour power reserve. The piece will be available with two straps: textured rubber echoing the dial pattern and black alligator straps.

Octo Roma Chronograph Steel DLC 

Octo Roma Chronograph Steel DLC 

The Octo Roma Chronograph Steel DLC is sportier than ever. It comes in a slightly larger case measuring 42 mm giving the bi-compax chronograph layout ample space to stand out. The Start/Stop and Reset pushers have been carefully integrated into the case, directly extending from the lugs, in keeping with Octo Roma line’s contemporary design. The Octo Roma Chronograph remains faithful to the complication's original design, with a small seconds at 3 o'clock, a 12-hour counter at 6 o'clock, and a 30-minute counter at 9 o'clock; there’s a large central seconds hand as well. A discreet date display is placed at 4:30. 

Powering this watch is Bvlgari’s in-house automatic Caliber BVL 399, which beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour and offers a 42-hour power reserve. For enhanced readability, the three counters sport a sunburst finish, while the hour markers and hands are luminescent. The watch is paired with a rubber strap with a Clous de Paris texture, mirroring the dial. Additionally, a black alligator strap, also available, elevates the sporty-chic aesthetic if and when a touch of elegance is de rigueur. The two straps are easily interchangeable, thanks to the quick-release system.

Tadao Ando X Bvlgari Serpenti

Tadao Ando X Bvlgari Serpenti

For W&W 2024, the brand has collaborated with an eminent Japanese architect for the Serpenti Tubogas collection, which celebrates the fleeting splendour of nature. Tadao Ando and Bvlgari had collaborated in 2020 and 2021 for the Octo Finissimo, which captured the essence of time through the pure lines of a spiral, and the Mikazuki concept, symbolising the waxing crescent moon.

To evoke the seasons on the watch faces of the Serpenti, Tadao Ando has envisioned vivid marquetry of green aventurine, tiger's eye, and pink or white mother of pearl. Bvlgari’s artisan-craftspeople have skillfully translated this vision onto a watch dial. The fragments have been meticulously selected and then precisely traced and cut. Finally, the fragments have been carefully assembled, crafting a play of colours and reflections. To highlight this artistic canvas, two rows of diamonds, set along the serpent's head, infuse radiance in this vibrant tableau.

Tadao Ando has envisioned vivid marquetry of green aventurine, tiger's eye, and pink or white mother of pearl for the dial's of the Serpenti watch.

The first of the four limited editions, to be unveiled at the summer solstice, summer or natsu, captures a sun-drenched forest with a slightly translucent green aventurine stone, enriched with dusky effects. This vibrant dial contrasts beautifully with a case and a bracelet made of yellow gold and steel.

As autumn, aki, approaches, the leaves get a golden glow, which is depicted through the tiger's eye, set entirely in rose gold and accentuated by a pink rubellite on the crown. 

With the onset of winter, fuyu, nature's icy beauty is revealed and expressed by the marquetry of white mother-of-pearl. Its iridescence is beautifully complemented by a gleaming steel case and bracelet.

And during spring, haru, there is a rebirth of vital energies, a time celebrated in Japan with the fleeting bloom of sakura, the cherry blossom trees – a vision embodied in this limited Serpenti watch edition with delicate shades of pink mother-of-pearl marquetry.

A collection of 20 exclusive boxed sets will present these four creations as an ensemble.

These new additions to the Serpenti Tubogas collection will mark the seasons till spring 2025. Each limited edition is housed in a box specially crafted and signed by Tadao Ando, a detail echoed on the back of each watch case. Additionally, a collection of 20 exclusive boxed sets will present these four creations as an ensemble.

Image Credits: Bvlgari