Oversized watches are an active niche in the world’s watch markets, with new big-case timepieces introduced annually at the important international watch show in Basel, Switzerland. Usually these upscale watches are in the 40mm to 45mm range. However, at the recent 2002 Basel show, Hublot presented an exclusive limited edition of what must be the biggest big-case luxury watch yet made.
Created in aluminum, with Hublot’s trademark vanilla-scented natural black rubber strap, the watch has a case that 60 cm (1.9 feet) wide (not including the crown). Its black lacquer dial is covered by a mineral glass sapphire. The working watch has a functioning quartz movement (reinforced to handle the movement of such large hands), is 1.8 meters (5.9 feet) long, and weighs 171 pounds.
The case is entirely made by hand. Carved carefully from a block of aluminum, and then hand-finished, it took many weeks of hard labor by craftsman Elio Orianni to reproduce the exact shape and aesthetics of the Hublot case with its combination of polished and brushed metal. The watch attachments and clasp are also made of aluminum.
One watch has already been made; only 25 are planned. They retail for 125,000 Swiss francs (about $79,000).
Hublot is made by MDM Geneve. For more information, contact MDM Genève, 44, rte. de Divonne, CH-1260 Nyon, Switzerland (011-41-22-362-1970) or MDM of America Inc., The International Bldg., 2451 East Sunrise Blvd., Suite ST4, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. 33304. (954) 568-9400.