Independent Geneva watch maker Golay-Spierer has announced the first opus from their ‘Heroïca Tempus’ collection. The Napoleon Bonaparte watch is the debut model from this unique collection of timepieces.
The unique Napoleon Bonaparte watch, which was painstakingly assembled in Golay-Spierer’s Geneva workshop, includes in its dial the original handwritten signature of the famous statesman and military commander, dating from a letter he wrote in March 1807.
The watch is the first in a new series by the manufacture: “Heroïca Tempus”, a planned capsule collection of unique watches, each including in its design the signature of an important historic figure.
Sotheby’s October watch auctions in Geneva will feature this one-of-a-kind hand-crafted wristwatch incorporating the original signature of Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.
This unique Napoleon Bonaparte watch will be offered in a single-lot online sale, open for bidding from 8-15 October, with no reserve and an estimate of CHF 40,000 – 80,000.
A portion of proceeds from the sale will support the work of two non-profit organizations: Footballeurs sans Frontières, which funds projects for underprivileged children, and Aua Help Noma, which works to support children suffering from the debilitating disease, noma.
The “Napoleon Bonaparte” watch
The unique “Napoleon Bonaparte” watch is encased in stunning rose gold, with a generous 46mm dial to accommodate the precious fragment of history: Napoleon’s original signature from a letter he wrote in 1807.
The symbolism associated with the famous military commander is echoed in an imperial bee meticulously incorporated into the dial (using the traditional Swiss craft known as ‘decoupage’), as well as on the hand-engraved bezel, which bears a laurel wreath and the letter ‘N’ at 12 o’clock.
The back of the watch is set with a 20-franc gold Napoléon coin, minted in 1807, the same year as the original handwritten letter which was used to create the dial.
The Heroïca Tempus Collection
This first piece in the ‘Heroïca Tempus’ collection was born from the meeting between Christophe Golay and French designer and creator Gaël Bonnel Sanchez.
The collection offers unique watches based on authentic documents signed by of historical figures. The point is not to reproduce the documents, but rather of taking the part with the signature and using it to create the dial.
This approach is fully in the spirit of Golay Spierer, and of its founder Christophe Golay, who since 2001 has defended luxury as the meeting of three fundamental values: creativity, rarity and the search for excellence.
The first opus of the Heroïca Tempus capsule collection is dedicated to Emperor Napoléon Bonaparte, one of the most renowned historical figures, whose life and exploits still fascinate thousands of enthusiasts throughout the world, more than 200 years after his death.
Model: “Napoléon Bonaparte” watch
Rose gold case with a diameter of 46mm and a thickness of 9.0mm
Hand-engraved bezel with a laurel wreath and the symbolic “N” at 12 o’clock
Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier 2.6mm thick automatic movement with cut micro rotor engraved with the arms of Golay Spierer
The back of the watch is set with a 20 franc gold Napoléon struck in 1807, the same year as the handwritten document.
The dial is composed of a gold base that houses the precious autograph decorated with the hand-cut imperial bee and a sapphire crystal providing it with perfect protection.
About Golay Spierer
Founded in Geneva in 2001, the Swiss brand Golay Spierer is the absolute reference in custom-made watches. Unknown to the general public, it enjoys an international reputation with a clientele of aesthetes, collectors and informed amateurs. It is also sought after by several major brands and its creations are regularly exhibited in Geneva and Basel with the utmost discretion.
Faithful to its values for almost 20 years, it fully embodies the new relationship with luxury objects that is profoundly transforming watchmaking and which is expressed through the search for greater creativity, genuine exclusivity and a level of quality aimed at excellence.
Since its creation, Golay Spierer has produced just over 130 timepieces. Their price varies between CHF 35,000 (€33,000) and CHF 300,000 (€283,000) depending on the degree of complexity, with an average price of around CHF 65,000 (€61,320).
About Christophe Golay, co-founder of Golay Spierer
Born in Geneva in 1968, Christophe Golay comes from a long tradition of watchmakers from the Vallée de Joux, the historic cradle of Swiss watchmaking. He is the direct descendant of Auguste Golay, founder of the House of Golay-Leresche in Geneva in 1837, who, like his competitors at the time, Vacheron Constantin (1755) and Patek Philippe (1839), specialized in the production of very high-quality watches for a rich international clientele.
Gifted for science, Christophe Golay began his professional career in pharmaceutical research, where the relevance of his work led him to file a patent. In 2001, buoyed by a family tradition more than a century old, he left the pharmaceutical industry to found Golay Spierer, the only Swiss watchmaking company specializing in the design and manufacture of unique, tailor-made timepieces.
About GaëlBonnel Sanchez, founder of GBS Holdings
GaëlBonnel Sanchez entered the world of entertainment after a career as a professional sportsman. As a producer, he made his mark with big names in the sector, such as Endemol, before entering the film industry. It was in Bulgaria, in the NüBoyana studios, that he produced “Fractures,” his first feature film, directed and co-produced by French journalist Harry Roselmack.
These activities led him to numerous creations and concepts such as Black G vodka, the world’s first vodka infused with caviar. In 2019, he entered the world of luxury and specialized in the design of new and unique objects.