The first Manufacture Royale was founded during the Age of Enlightenment by French writer, historian, and philosopher Voltaire (1694–1778). Launched in 2010, the modern Manufacture Royale inherited Voltaire’s independent spirit: the aim was to create a brand ahead of its time while expressing the same sort of offbeat humor the great poet was famous for.
In the watch industry, there are many brands struggling to find just the right balance of modesty and pride in their accomplishments, but one brand that does a pretty darn good job of juggling the balance is Manufacture Royale. And one of the best pieces of evidence for this is the 1770 Voltige. Read on and I think you’ll see why.
The Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) has just published the list of 2015’s pre-selected watches in the run-up to the big red carpet event in Geneva on October 29. The pre-selected watches will go on a world tour that includes stops in Hong Kong, Seoul, Dubai, Geneva, and London in October and November. But enough preamble, let’s have a look at the watches that are now in serious contention to take home big prizes this year.
Manufacture Royale’s most controversial, and undoubtedly most incredible, piece is the highly complicated Opera, which features a minute repeater, tourbillon, and, most anachronistically, a hinged telescoping case. Basically, it’s big, it’s bold, and it rocks. And like the opera (theater), the Opera (watch) is not for everybody. But those that like it love it. I love it.