Watches And Wonders 2023 – a watch fair where every brand unveils novelties drawing inspiration from myriad aspects around us. While some try to take the off-beat path, some stick to their roots and expand collections. This time around, Chopard has taken inspiration from Nature tracing it back to India for its Imperiale Collection!
The lotus, revered as a sacred flower in both Egypt and India, has long been seen as a symbol of the sun. Legend has it that the sun rises from a lotus corolla each morning and sets behind its petals. This Imperiale series limited edition, one of only twenty-five, was created by Chopard after the brand studied nature for design inspiration.
A Walk Down History
The fact that the Imperiale collection, introduced in 1994, is named after and heavily features this flower in its distinctive designs only strengthens the connection between the two. The models’ crowns and several of the dials are shaped like it. It is also used to decorate the moon phase and flying tourbillon models. Chopard’s ‘Lotus Blanc’ secret watch, made in its Haute Joaillerie factories and decorated with diamond-set petals that open and close at will on the dial, received the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève in the Jewellery category in 2017.
Twenty-Five Unique Pieces
Twenty-five unique timepieces, each numbered and made from ethical 18-karat rose gold to showcase the beauty of the lotus flower, are the newest addition to the Imperiale collection. The collection’s namesake floral pattern is displayed against a sky whose dynamic beauty shifts with the hours owing to a spinning mechanism that delineates between day and night. The L.U.C Caliber 96.30-L created by the Artisans of the Manufacture illuminates the dial, which is set with sapphires and diamonds and decorated with carved gold lotus petals, creating an air of exquisite delicacy.
As explained by Chopard’s Co-President and Artistic Director Caroline Scheufele. “Lotus flowers open and close at sunrise and sunset. It seemed natural to us to enrich this watch with a day/night indication which is a watchmaking complication that is both romantic and attractive.”
Chopard has created a dazzlingly feminine watch that celebrates the marriage of glamour and poetry with a casing in ethical 18-carat rose gold that is fully set with diamonds. The Imperiale’s dial is a showcase of the Maison’s finest jewelry and craftsmanship. The skilled jewelers behind this piece depicted the lotus at its center by balancing curved petals made of engraved and satin-brushed gold on top of other, flatter petals made of polished rose gold. Diamonds glitter along the petal edges of this holy flower.
The Passing Of Time Reveals A Shifting Landscape
The day/night indicator is a small work of art, with a spinning disc that shows the sky at different stages of the day and night. Chopard has used several handcrafted methods to create this immensely complex day and night picture.
Lacquered in an exquisite cerulean gradient and enlivened by seven gold-powder stars, the mother-of-pearl movable dial of this Imperiale model is a work of art. Stunningly depicting the change from day to night are diamonds and sapphires set in snow. The L.U.C 96.30-L caliber, which was created in-house at the Manufacture and is responsible for this precise motion, is responsible for this.
This clever version of the first caliber from Chopard Manufacture is powered by a self-winding mechanism that provides a 65-hour power reserve and rotates a day-night disc at a rate of once every 24 hours. Around midnight, the star-studded sapphire dome gives way to dawn lights symbolized by a white diamond sky, behind which the night stars vanish till the next day.
This Imperiale model undergoes a progressive transformation as darkness gives way to light. Time itself stars in this interesting production.
Limited and numbered 25-piece edition in ethical 18-carat rose gold
Ethical 18-carat rose gold
Total diameter 36.00 mm
Thickness 10.15 mm
Water resistance 50 meters
Bezel and lug covers in ethical 18-carat gold set with diamonds
Crown and lugs set with sapphires
Glare-proofed sapphire crystal
Mechanical self-winding movement Chopard 96.30-L
Number of components 188
Total diameter 28.40 mm
Thickness 4.95 mm
Number of jewels 29
Frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz)
Power reserve 65 hours
Dial and hands:
Décor in 18-carat rose gold featuring IMPERIALE lace pattern, polished and sandblasted with polished grooves
Rotating day/night disc with blue-gradient mother-of-pearl center and powdered gold stars, framed by a diamond- and sapphire-set exterior.
Gilded open-worked sword-shaped hours and minutes hands
Functions and displays:
Central display of the hours, minutes, and seconds
Strap and buckle:
Seamless blue pearlescent alligator leather strap
Pin buckle in ethical 18-carat rose gold
Ref. 385388-5001 – Numbered 25-piece limited edition in ethical 18-carat rose gold. Available exclusively in Chopard boutiques.