Celebrated as the world’s first family of certified chronometers, the world renowned Constellation collection by Swiss watch maker OMEGA is a defining symbol of precision and watchmaking expertise.
Although the very first Constellation model was launched in 1952, you need to go back several decades to begin tracing its origins of accuracy. Perhaps the best place to start is the famous era of observatory trials, between 1919 and 1971, when OMEGA achieved 93 victories and set 72 world records at the observatories at Kew-Teddington, Neuchatel and Geneva.
These observatory trials were not only rigorous and intense, but they were also the most exacting in the watch industry. During the late 19th and 20th centuries, watch manufacturers and their master watchmakers spent significant amounts of time and resources in preparation for the trials, showcasing the complex science of precision and the ability to make each movement tick in perfect rhythm.
One of the most significant years for OMEGA came in 1933, when the company achieved a world record for precision in every single category at the observatory of Kew-Teddington in England. The company then repeated this achievement in 1936, when it returned to the same observatory.
In 1945, the Geneva Observatory introduced the “wristwatch-sized” movement category to its annual precision contests, and in the eight years that followed, OMEGA won an incredible six times.
By this time, the Swiss brand had well established its dominance in the world of precision awards. The name “OMEGA” was by now synonymous with the most exacting standards anywhere in the world.
In 1948, OMEGA celebrated its 100th anniversary by offering customers its first chronometer-certified wristwatch with an automatic movement. This model, named the “Centenary”, was greeted with such delight by connoisseurs of precision, that OMEGA recognised the need for a fully established collection with the same official status.
Here is where the Constellation arrived. Following the success of the “Centenary”, the now-iconic Constellation collection was unveiled on the market in 1952. This moment was the first time that any brand had created a family of watches that consisted only of certified chronometers. It was a huge signal of intent and undeniably proved the brand’s dedication to accuracy.
The famous observatory symbol on the caseback was created with a design reminiscent of the Geneva Observatory, while the eight stars represented those two world records of 1933 and 1936, and the six “wristwatch-sized” contests won between 1945 and 1952.
Still today, we are reminded of the Constellation’s heritage, and OMEGA’s own achievements, with every new model that enters the collection. Even better, the Master Chronometer certification now awarded to each Constellation watch proves that its promise of the industry’s highest standard of precision and performance remains irrefutably true.