The renown Montre Breguet pays a homage to its heritage with a special piece. Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge packs some of the best artisanal artistical expertise in an ultra-modern luxurious timepiece. The brand makes a bold move and combines extreme traditional complication with a daring appearance.
We can “place” the origin of this masterpiece in 1775, when freshly married Abraham-Louis Breguet sets up his own business on Quai de l’Horloge. This location in Ile de la Cité, Paris is the leitmotif found on this work of horological art.
Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge
The watch we see today is a very contemporary approach of luxury watchmaking. We can clearly see the signs of Breguet artisans in the exceptional finishes (that includes, of course, the spectacular back engravings), the choice of complications (not one but two tourbillons), so very traditional aspects of watchmaking but altogether in a high-tech presentation (sapphire, platinum and rubber, plus, a daring royal blue).
For those familiar with la Grande Maison and Classique “Grande Complication”, the new Double Tourbillon, the Ref. 5345 has a familiar feel. It is not the first watch featuring this complex system. But from the previous iterations, this watch has a much more “light” approach, maybe we can say “sportier”.
Naturally, it comes in a precious metal – platinum, just like the last version, the Ref. 5349. But from a diameter of 50mm and a thickness of 18.65mm, the Ref. 5345 comes in much more subtle (a comparison is a comparison, although the 5345 is far by being subtle) case with the diameter of only 46mm and a height reduced to 16.8mm.
Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge comes in the Classique fluted case with slender horns and the Breguet signed crown. The watch is covered by a huge sapphire box crystal. The view is not less than spectacular.
The height of the crystal created a better visibility for the entire dial. The complexity of the movement is highlighted for the delight of the viewer. Interesting to see that the brand chose an interesting strap with a “stone” pattern on rubber. The watch is fitted with a beautiful triple folding platinum clasp. The clasp received an impressive amount of care through a selection of decorations.
Brossage (brushing), anglage (chamfering) with polissage (polish), exceptional details on all angles are a delightful set of decoration used for the Breguet signet clasp. These are all used for the movement’s finishes. The picture above slightly reveals the back of the watch.
The life at the end of 1700’s
We can surely say that the back of the Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge is une œuvre d’art elle-même (a work of art itself). The back of the movement is visible through a sapphire crystal and depicts the Quai de l’Horloge – the building where, Monsieur Breguet open his Atelier in 1775.
The backplate reveals us with incredible details the life in those years, etched into gold. The meticulous details are highlighted by several treatments and engraving techniques.
The details of the house situated 39 Quai de l’Horloge, Paris are outstanding. Is that Madam Breguet looking through the windows at Antoine-Louis playing near the Seine?
Even the information plate received a charming implementation. Nevertheless, the beauty of Paris was delightfully imprinted. I have visited Paris this summer, and that corner of the city has the same charm as for the last few centuries.
Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge revelas its Calibre 588N in all its glory. The view of the two tourbillons is unobstructed. All the surrounding elements seem to highlight the beauty of those two.
The 2.5Hz tourbillons are mounted on a revolving main plate. This received a beautiful decoration pattern realised by hand-engraving on a rose engine. A complete rotation of the system requires 12 hours. A glimpse of the movement behaviour can be seen in the video above.
Two open design barrels feed the hungry complication. Note the exceptional finishes received by the Breguet signed bridge. Here we can also observe the sapphire chapter ring that holds the engraved and lacquer filled indexes.
For this piece, Breguet used Roman numerals and dot indexes. The hands are the traditional, brand’s signature hands. The hour hand is integrated into the tourbillon holding bridge.
It is interesting to see how the proportion of the hours’ hand was kept and how the integration as a functional component was realised.
The tourbillons are coupled to a differential that determines the average rate. The mechanism in work is mesmerising. Calibre 588N is the most complex systems ever developed by Montre Breguet. From the complications of the winding system with independent wheel trains to the superb decorations, the movement is one of the most beautiful work of mechanical art seen this year.
An unusual combination – tourbillons, engravings and rubber
The Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge is an imposing watch. And I am not referring to the physical dimensions. Ref. 5345 is a bold piece making a bold statement. The watch is particularly heavy due to the platinum case and gold mainplate. It requires accommodation. The huge sapphire contributes to the feeling of “large”. Nevertheless, the wrist feel is … magnificent.
Some might find the Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge Ref. 5345 as a departure from the traditions of Montre Breguet. Might find it a bit too modern for this brand that specialises in traditional watchmaking. But progress and evolution was always in the hearth of the Breguet family, and the wish to reach new heights was passed to the modern brand. The brand acquires new expertise, it experiments with new technologies. At the same time, “the old ways” are not forgotten but kept with sanctity as the most precious riches of Maison Breguet.
Breguet Classique Double Tourbillon Quai de l’Horloge Technical Specifications
- Round platinum case with finely fluted caseband.
- Sapphire-crystal caseback.
- Sapphire glass box of high transparency.
- Diameter: 46 mm.
- Thickness: 16.8 mm.
- Rounded welded lugs with screw bars.
- Sapphire dial.
- Individually numbered and signed Breguet.
- Hours chapter with Roman numerals.
- Open-tipped Breguet minutes hand in blued steel.
- Blued-steel hours hand extending along the bar supporting the two tourbillons.
- Manually wound mechanical movement.
- Cal. 588N, numbered and signed Breguet.
- Two tourbillons mounted on a revolving main plate hand-engraved on a rose engine.
- The two regulating organs are coupled to a differential that determines the average rate.
- Complete revolution of the main plate in 12 hours.
- 50-hour power reserve.
- 16½ lignes.
- 81 jewels.
- 738 components.
- Breguet balance springs.
- Frequency 2.5 hertz.
- Monometallic balance wheels with gold screws.
- Adjusted in 6 positions.
- On the reverse side of the movement, an engraving carried out by hand depicts the building on Quai de l’Horloge in Paris.
Strap & Buckle
- “Stone” strap, natural slate on rubber.
- Triple folding clasp in platinum.