There is no denying that Bvlgari are one of the finest jewellery makers around, however, they’re perhaps not as well-known for their watch acumen. 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. 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 and just a couple of weeks ago, Bvlgari announced this new example with a satin steel finish.
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. And just in case you were wondering; the thinnest movement in the world today is the calibre BVL 288 – yes, another Bvlgari movement – which is just 1.95mm thick and belongs inside the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon.
The case of this Octo Finissimo is a sight to behold. The Octo Finissimo is very well-known for its genius design structure, where sharp lines and multiple facets meet the round bezel. The watch is 40mm in diameter and 5.15mm thick, with sapphire crystals front and back, but what is quite abundantly obvious is that the case was designed in such a way that incorporates the traditional appeal of ultra-thin watchmaking in an elaborate contemporary design, while yet at the same time appealing to the wider audience – it’s a stroke of genius. And if that wasn’t enough; getting an integrated bracelets right is a skill in itself and the design of the triple-blade folding clasp bracelet is not only unique but accentuates the octagon shape of the watch head.
Bvlgari as a watch brand has at times felt a little alien to me, I couldn’t quite get onboard with their designs, that was until 2017 when the Octo Finissimo Automatic was introduced. The design and technical aspects of the Octo Finissimo Automatic, were combined in such a way that makes it rather special in my humble opinion. The design 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 but yet elegant design of the dial, the seriously thin profile and its beautiful execution in satin brushed case that features the beautifully designed integrated steel bracelet. This is definitely one piece we’ll trying to get our hands-on this year for a full review.
The new Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Automatic in Satin-Steel, which hasn’t been confirmed if it will be limited or not, will retail for approx. £9200. For more information, visit the official Bvlgari website.