Les Collectionneurs: Seoul from 11 Oct. to 13 Nov. 2022
- A representative selection of vintage watches covering the entire 20th century;
- Seoul, 11th Oct to 13th Nov 2022, at Vacheron Constantin Shinsegae Gangnam boutique
- Models “hunted down” by Vacheron Constantin's experts, then restored and delivered with a certificate of authenticity and a two-year guarantee.
Chosen with patience and talent by the Maison’s heritage department specialists, vintage watches covering the entire 20th century are now part of the aptly named Les Collectionneurs collection. The latter continues to evolve over time and is regularly offered for sale to brand aficionados at dedicated events organised in Vacheron Constantin boutiques around the world. “Les Collectionneurs” models all come with a certificate of authenticity and a two-year guarantee – an offer unmatched in the watchmaking world.
When vintage is second nature
The notion of vintage is second nature to Vacheron Constantin. It is expressed through a strong attachment to everything relating to its heritage. In more than 260 years of existence, the Maison has accumulated a unique set of archives in the field of time measurement. Engaged in uninterrupted production since its origins, the Manufacture is also able to take care of – and restore if necessary – any watch from its workshops, whatever its age. A closer look at its archives and its private collection of more than 1,500 timepieces offers an excellent insight into this historical depth and the means used to nurture it. From the watchmakers and craftsmen of its restoration workshop to the historians of the Style & Heritage team, the experts at Vacheron Constantin possess all the necessary skills to best serve this vintage watchmaking that now enjoys such an excellent reputation.
Vacheron Constantin quickly felt the need to unite connoisseurs and aficionados of the Maison around this same passion, leading to the creation of Les Collectionneurs: an approach consisting in using the Manufacture’s considerable resources to gather and restore a series of historical Vacheron Constantin pieces, subsequently offered for sale at dedicated events in Vacheron Constantin boutiques around the world. "Les Collectionneurs represents another facet of Vacheron Constantin," comments Christian Selmoni, Style & Heritage Director. “The collection perpetuates this precious link between past and present, enabling our clientele of connoisseurs and collectors to acquire restored vintage pieces directly through the Maison, which is a real guarantee. As for the events organised around the world to unveil these pieces, they attract both seasoned collectors and young generations eager to delve more deeply into watchmaking history.”
Watches ready for a new life
The Vacheron Constantin Heritage team works to bring together these vintage watches, whether pocket or wristwatches. The objective is to create a representative range of timepieces offered by Vacheron Constantin over the years. All kinds of channels are used in order to locate them: auction rooms, personal contacts with private individuals – bearing in mind that an expert eye is decisive in the choice of these timepieces, be they simple or striking models, calendars or chronographs... Pocket watches mainly covering the years 1910 to 1930 and wristwatches prior to 1970 – with a preference for the period from 1940 to 1960 – are then subjected to a dual appraisal. First of all, a historical evaluation is undertaken in order to authenticate the piece with reference to the in-house archives, which have been listing cases and movements by serial number for a century and a half. Then comes the technical assessment aimed at determining which interventions may be necessary, from simply cleaning the watch to its restoration – the objective being to preserve these timepieces in a state as close as possible to that of their origins. If necessary, they are restored to working order using period components, of which Vacheron Constantin maintains a large stock, or else reproduced the old-fashioned way and in identical form within the Manufacture. Once the process is complete, each timepiece is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity and a two-year guarantee, the latter being the same as that delivered with all models within the Maison’s standard collections.
Models unveiled at Korea event
For 1 month from 11th October 2022, Vacheron Constantin organises special event of historical models from its private collection in Shinsegae Gangnam Boutique. These are all special experiences that give connoisseurs an opportunity to discover this Les Collectionneurs collection; and Vacheron Constantin's experts a chance to share the history related to the "experience" of these models. Thanks to its extremely well documented archives, the Maison can retrace the destiny of these timepieces that have survived through the ages as testimony to their time and to its watchmaking expertise. Rare and doubtless unique for those who cherish them, these Vacheron Constantin watches bearing the patina of age as a badge of honour are thus ready for a new life.
1. YELLOW GOLD ROYAL CHRONOMETER POCKET WATCH (Reference 11974 / 1910)
At the turn of the twentieth century, Vacheron Constantin has gained an indisputable reputation on the American continent, thanks to the intense work of the representatives “in situ”. Furthermore of these representatives made sure that Vacheron Constantin timepieces were sold especially in Panama (1864), Venezuela (Venezuelan client 1890), Chile (1912), Bolivia and Guatemala.
In view of the cultural tastes of this great continent and inspired by a long experience with many different latitudes, Vacheron Constantin developed a reliable and resistant open-faced timepiece, able to stand up to the challenging climates of the continent. It was named “CHRONOMETRE ROYAL”.
A patent was deposited on May 28th, 1907 in order to be protected from competitors. A patent was also deposited in English, as “ROYAL CHRONOMETER”.
2. ALUMINUM ANTICORODAL POCKET WATCH (Reference 12329 / Model 4348 / 1952)
Being particularly challenging, this timekeeper is almost entirely manufactured of anticorodal aluminium : case, dial, movement’s bridges and bottom plate for a total 19,61 grams weight. This watch concept was initially thought as a tribute of new metal after second world war. This reference is an original project of aluminium Vacheron Constantin watch developed in collaboration with ALCAN (Northern Aluminum Company).
Ramon F. Magsaysay (1907-1957), president of Philippine country received a similar Vacheron Constantin
aluminium watch as a diplomatic gift in 1953.
3. YELLOW GOLD CIOCCOLATONE WRISTWATCH (Reference 12337 / Model 31100 / 1992)
This very original square and cambered model is widely known as «Cioccolatone». Indeed, Italian watch collectors immediately compared it with the shape of a square of Swiss chocolate in the 1950’s at the occasion of the first generation launching. The original "Cioccolatone" model was also immediately recognizable with its extra-large dimensions.
In 1990, Vacheron Constantin launched a reedition of the original model from the 1950's, however with reduced dimensions, answering demands from the Japanese market, under the reference number 39044. The present timepiece has similar dimensions, however with a different movement and dial: this version shows a sophisticated dial, guilloche “vieux panier” pattern and recognizable gold “Clou de Paris” markers and houses calibre 8’’ 1132, replacing the caliber 1015 fitted in reference 39044.
Les Collectionneurs Korea Tour Vacheron Constantin
【 Date 】 11th Oct – 13th Nov, 2022
【 Tel 】 1877-4306