One of the world’s most exclusive watchmakers makes a strong come back with the Badollet Ivresse.
By Ivan Luque
Jean Badollet founded the original Badollet Company in 1655, and it endured until 1924. After seven generations, Gustave Badollet was forced to sell the family business after the outbreak of World War I and the ensuing economic turmoil that followed.
In 2006 a descendent of the Badollet successfully enters the market from Geneva. The brainchild of Badollet is the Ivresse watch– a collaboration between the famed watchmaker and noted designer Eric Giroud. David Candaux–a young watchmaker formerly with Jaeger-le-Coultre–designed a unique movement split in two to accommodate the curvature of the rectangular case. The arch of the 950 platinum case is a tactile pleasure for the wrist.
The Ivresse exemplifies the elusive quality of excellence: the dial composed mostly of negative space, the sole Badellot logo of the lion at the 12’o clock position, and the hidden tourbillon that can only be seen on the case’s rear. According to Philippe Dubois, CEO of Badollet, what make a truly great watch is hand-craftsmanship, horological significance, limited quantities, and its capacity to be discreet about a person’s wealth. Badollet timepieces are known for their limited annual production and their high price range: approximately 50 watches, each at a price around $200,000. ■