Just when you think that the ‘Fine Watchmaking Collection’ (FWM) was over and done, and replaced by the new ‘Cartier Prive’ line, Cartier comes back to it. By launching a very exclusive set of three highlights from the ‘Fine Watchmaking’ Series, they make a kind of tribute to this series. The ‘Fine Watchmaking Collection’ was launched in 2008 and discontinued in 2018. During this period, Carole Forestier-Kasapi, then head of the Watch Making Department, presented one complicated timepiece after another. These innovative watches were developed by her and her team of watchmakers and manufactured in the Cartier Manufacture in La Chaud-de-Fonds.
Three highlights from the FWM collection were the ‘Rotonde de Cartier Astromystérieux’, ‘Rotonde de Cartier Astrotourbillon’ and ‘Rotonde de Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon’. While none of these watches are new, Cartier now offers them as an exclusive set, as they will not be available individually.
In contrast to the originals, these new three watches are provided with precious stones in the crown, matching the color of the alligator-skin strap.
Cartier has designed an extremely precious, lacquered wooden box for these three exceptional watches, celebrating a craft that is dear to ‘La Maison’: wood marquetry. The wooden marquetry box also includes a travel pouch in alligator leather and a pair of white gold cufflinks (studs & bars) with three interchangeable stone bars in sodalite, jade, and blue quartz. No doubts that this is a prestigious and very ultra-exclusive edition!
This unique presentation of a wooden box with cufflinks and a luxurious travel pouch was also done for the Santos-Dumont Demoiselles, limited to 30 pieces, which sold out almost immediately.
Although these Rotonde models represent Cartier’s achievements when it comes to Haute Horlogerie, none of them are ideal as a daily wearer due to their size. During the ‘Fine Watchmaking’ years, I have often criticized the watches’ unnecessary large cases. In my honest opinion, they made the FWM series unfamous, but these Tourbillon models are an exception. The 43,5mm, 45mm, and 47mm Rotonde cases are not fashionable large but are made to fit the impressive caliber! And that makes all the difference.
Only five sets have been made available by Cartier, and I am convinced that they will become a unique possession for the true Cartier fanatic, who values the brand for its more complex creations.
Since Watches By SJX had the premiere of this unique set; I suggest you check out his article for the technical details.