There is no denying that Bvlgari are one of the finest jewellery makers around and over the past few years have really established themselves also as one of the finest watchmakers around too. Bvlgari have been making watches for many, many years, though attractive men’s watches were probably not their best suit. Over the past few years, this has changed greatly. In 2017, Bvlgari introduced its newest ultra-thin Octo Finissimo Automatic in titanium, which set a new world record for ultra-thin watches at the time. In 2018, Bvlgari introduced the same piece in steel with some further iterations making an appearance in 2020 and 2021. But this latest piece is a 10th anniversary of the Octo collection.
To celebrate this icon of slenderness and style. Bvlgari have unveiled two editions that go back to the roots of its conception: the first sketches made by none other than Bulgari’s Product Creation Executive Director, Fabrizio Buonamassa Stigliani. The pencil sketches that were used in the original design that gave birth to the Octo Finissimo are visible on the engraved dials of two of the flagship models – the Finissimo Chronograph GMT Automatic and this model, the Octo Finissimo Automatic.
It was ten years ago that the Octo collection made its mark on the world of Haute Hologerie technical prowess and its iconic design. Many of you may know that the thinness of the Octo Finissimo is partly due to the calibre BVL 138 Finissimo, which when released in 2017 was the world’s thinnest self-winding movement – just 2.23mm thick. Unlike AP’s calibre 2120 (which is still the world’s thinnest full-rotor automatic movement) the calibre makes use of the micro-rotor, which in my humble opinion affords a better look at the movement through the exhibition case back.
The sandblasted titanium case of this Octo Finissimo is quite something and of course this makes it feather light. The Octo Finissimo is very well-known for its genius design structure, where sharp lines and multiple facets meet the round radial brushed bezel. The watch is 40mm in diameter and 6.4mm thick, which allows for an updated 3 metres of waterproofness. The dial has been given a rather interesting but highly noticeable finish: featuring a matte grey sandblasted titanium dial – with engraved indices, Bvlgari logo and small seconds display that replicate Fabrizio’s first sketch.
It sports sapphire crystals front and back, but what is quite abundantly obvious is that the case was designed in such a way that incorporates traditional appeal of ultra-thin watchmaking and at the same time wider audience – it’s a stroke of genius. Getting integrated bracelets right is a skill and the design of the triple-blade folding clasp bracelet is not only unique but accentuates the octagon shape of the watch head.
This new Octo Finissimo from Bvlgari is one of those watches you see a glimpse of and think – “nice drawing”, then it quickly dawns on you that this is anything but. The design of the Octo Finissimo is unique but at the same time appears organic and this is exactly how it should be. The allure of Octo Finissimo Automatic is attributed to its combination of shapes, simple yet elegant design of the dial, the seriously thin profile and its beautiful execution in a sandblasted titanium case that features the beautifully designed integrated steel bracelet and an engraved dial with a pencil sketch, is a wonderful way to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Octo Finissimo.
The Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Automatic 10th Anniversary is limited to 200 pieces worldwide and when available will retail for approx. €15,600. For more information, visit bvlgari.com