Vacheron Constantin takes top prize in Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Geneve

Swiss Luxury watchmaker Vacheron Constantin’s dual-faced Tour de l’Île, the world’s most complicated wristwatch, has won the L’Aiguille d’Or, top prize in the 2005 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Geneve. The timepiece sold for record-setting $1.5 million in auction in April, the most ever for a wristwatch.

The watch was created to celebrate the 250th anniversary this year of Vacheron Constantin, the world’s oldest continually operating watchmaker.

The prize was awarded Nov. 10 at the annual Grand Prix d’Horlogerie gala, which honors achievements in 10 categories by Swiss luxury watchmakers. The winning timepieces are chosen from many nominees by thousands of votes cast online by the public and by a jury of industry officials.

The high-profile event, held in Geneva, the traditional center of Swiss watchmaking, draws hundreds of guests, most from Europe but some from as far away as Japan.

In addition to Vacheron Constantin, the other winners are:

Breguet’s Tradition Breguet 7027 timepiece (Jury Prize); TAG Heuer’s Diamond Fiction and Van Cleef & Arpels’ Secret (sharing the Lady’s Watch honors); F.P. Journe’s Invenit et Fecit (Men’s Watch, which Journe also won in 2004); Hublot’s Big Bang White Ceramik (Watch Design); Patek Philippe’s Chronograph rattrapante, ref. 5959P (Watch with Complications); DeWitt’s Le Tourbillon differential Acadamia (Technical Innovation); Jaeger LeCoultre’s Master Compressor Extreme World Chronograph Sports Watch); Cartier’s Diagonale (Public Prize, based on voting by the Swiss public); and Franck Muller’s 7885 RMT QP (Middle East Public Prize).