Turquoise watch dials have been all the rage lately. Audemars Piguet is jumping on the trend and is unveiling for the first time a new version of its 37 mm Royal Oak Selfwinding model, entirely crafted in 18-carat yellow gold and illuminated by a natural turquoise dial.

Cut to form a slender disc, the turquoise has then been ground, sandblasted and polished before being integrated into a gilded brass outer casing. The overall thickness is just 0.75 mm. Each dial is one of a kind because every stone has its own natural composition, texture and colour, thus reacting differently to different machining operations or finishes. Originating from Mexico, the turquoise carefully selected to adorn this new model features a discreet pattern in a darker hue, making the appearance of each dial unique. Already used by the Egyptian and Chinese civilisations more than 3,000 years ago, turquoise is among the world’s oldest stones. This combination of historical heritage and vibrant colour makes it one of the jewellery industry’s most precious and sought-after gems. It is also reputed to have many spiritual benefits while bringing health, good luck and protection.

This is the first 37 mm Royal Oak variation in yellow gold since 2018. The case, bezel and integrated bracelet feature the Manufacture’s trademark touch in terms of hand-finishing with alternating polished and satin-brushed surfaces performed by the artisans in Le Brassus. Framed by this yellow gold case, the natural turquoise dial brings ocean-like intensity. Its blue shade strikes a contrast with the yellow gold hands and hour-markers featuring a luminescent coating enabling optimal readability in the dark. The turquoise is embellished by the polished yellow gold applique bearing the «Audemars Piguet» signature, which has been affixed to the dial with tiny feet specially designed to fit the thickness of the stone. The date window in the same colour as the stone ensures pleasing aesthetic harmony.

This new reference also showcases the design evolution that marked the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary by reinforcing its ergonomics as well as its visual impact. The corresponding developments visible on this 37 mm model include larger chamfers, trapeze-shaped first links on the tapering bracelet showing a pronounced decrease in thickness, along with a sapphire caseback slightly more integrated into the case middle.

This Royal Oak model is equipped with the latest selfwinding hour, minute, seconds and date movement from the Manufacture, Calibre 5900, which first appeared in 2022 on certain 37 mm references. This movement combines a slim 3.9 mm thickness, a high 4Hz frequency and a 60-hour power reserve. The mechanism is visible through the sapphire caseback revealing the 22-carat pink gold oscillating weight along with the refined decorations adorning the components, such as the polished angles, vertical satin brushing, Côtes de Genève, circular graining and chamfering.

While mineral or precious stone dials emerged on pocket watches in the late 19th century, it was not until the 20th century emergence of smaller-diameter wristwatches that the use of these fragile dials became more common. Stone dials flourished at Audemars Piguet between the late 1960s and the 1990s, at a time characterised by a revival of creativity in wristwatch design. The timepieces were thus adorned with a multitude of colours thanks to tiger’s eye, lapis lazuli, aventurine, garnet, mother-of-pearl, opal, ruby, amethyst and jasper.
The new 37 mm Royal Oak Selfwinding model extends this creative heritage by combining the natural brilliance of turquoise with a case entirely crafted in yellow gold, giving life to a timepiece with a resolutely sunny personality and positive vibes. Available for CHF 55.000.

I am absolutely in love with this model.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Audemars Piguet 2023
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