Winners at the Oscars of Watchmaking

From Bulgari to Zenith, the big winners at the 2021 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.

Zenith Chronomaster Sport

Best Chronograph

One of the top categories is the Best Chronograph, as it is usually awarded to a watch that is mostly likely to, or already has become, a collectors’ item.

Needless to say, it’s a tight race. This year’s winner is the Zenith Chronomaster Sport, the modern version of the 1960s icon, the first chronograph to use a high-frequency (36,000vph) movement, the El Primero.

This is the first time Zenith has received the Chronograph award for its high-frequency movements

DeBethune DB Kind of Two Tourbillon

The Tourbillon prize

The De Bethune Kind of Two Tourbillon is a double-dialed complication representing modern design on one side—a 30-second tourbillon anchored by a large deltoid-shaped bridge—and on the reverse, a more traditional, guilloché dial with central hours, minutes and seconds.

Grand Seiko Hi Beat Caliber 3600

The best Men’s Watch prize

The movement oscillates at 36,000 vph, compared to the standard 28,000, and has an accuracy rating of +5/-3 seconds per day.

Two mainspring barrels give it an 80-hour power reserve.

The textured dial is inspired by the white birch tree forests that grow in northern parts of Japan, as seen near the Grand Seiko Studio Shizukuishi where all Grand Seiko mechanical watches are made.

MB&F LMX in Titanium

Best Men’s Complication

The LMX Titanium, with a central flying balance wheel and two raised and angled time dials, and an exposed movement was the crowned winner.

Octo Finissimo Titanium Perpetual Calendar, Bulgari

The world’s slimmest perpetual calendar

This year, the top award goes to Bulgari for the Octo Finissimo Titanium Perpetual Calendar. As the world’s slimmest perpetual calendar, its case measures only 5.8 mm thick, and represents one of Bulgari’s seven world records for micro-watchmaking. The movement, the caliber BVL 305, is only 2.75 mm thick, and the extremely lightweight titanium only adds to the feeling of weightlessness.

“This is the first time an Italian-born brand has won a GPHG,” pointed out Bulgari CEO Jean-Christophe Babin when accepting the award.

“It is an example of Italian genius and obsession for details.”

LM SE Eddy Jaquet Around the World in Eighty Days

Artistic Crafts Category Prize

The company MB&F also won the Artistic Crafts Category for the LM SE Eddy Jaquet Around the World in Eighty Days, thanks to its intricate dial hand-carved by master engraver Eddy Jaquet over a period of two years.

Piaget, Limelight Gala Precious Rainbow

Ladies’ Watch Prize

Re-interpretation of a vintage piece from 1973, the Limelight Gala model features an elegant round case sublimated by two asymmetrical extended lugs that are cambered in order to perfectly fit any wrist.

Chopard, Flower Power

Jewelry Watch Prize

Among the treasures in Chopard’s emblematic Red Carpet Collection, the “Flower Power” jewellery watch, exquisitely crafted by the Maison’s artisans, testifies to the dreamy inspiration of Co-President and Artistic Director Caroline Scheufele, who has chosen to honour the Paradise theme.

The Paradise-themed Red Carpet Collection 2021 takes us into a universe dear to the Maison: that of unspoilt, generous and sublime nature. Among the 74 Haute Joaillerie creations composing this precious array – a number honouring the 74th Cannes Film Festival of which Chopard served as official partner

CIGA Design, Blue Planet

Challenge Watch Prize

CIGA invented a brand-new mechanical movement.

On the typical movement 30° rotation of the hour hand followed by a 360° rotation of the minutes hand. We developed a new gear ratio, on which the hour hand(the earth) rotates by 30° and the minute chapter ring rotates by 390°.

The original technology was named “Asynchronous-Follow”.

3. The ocean and land in the middle was micro-carved according to the real earth and depicted the real altitude of the terrain.

The only hand is the mariner symbol, by pointing at the still hour chapter ring and the rotating minute chapter ring, time can be clearly read.

Bernhard Lederer, Central Impulse Chronometer

Innovation Prize

Once again the watchmaking and aesthetic world of Bernhard Lederer finds its expression in a new high-precision chronometer. The first Bernhard Lederer watch of the ‘Tribute to the Masters of Escapements’ collection comes in a case that has a diameter of 44 mm and a thickness of 12.2 mm.

In it the award-winning German watchmaker has placed the fruit of years of reflecting upon and exploring the escapement, one of the most complex and noble subjects in watchmaking.

The result is Central Impulse Chronometer whose movement has a natural escapement.

Carol Besler

has written about watches and jewelry for nearly 30 years.

Carol Besler has written about watches and jewelry for nearly 30 years.

She has contributed to Watch Time, Journal Haute Horlogerie, Watch Journal, Robb Report, Revolution, Fashion Magazine, Watch Your Time (for The New York Times), Nuvo, Experience, The Hollywood Reporter, A Blog to Watch and more.

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