PROFILE: LAURENT FERRIER GALET SQUARE

THERE WERE MANY HEADLINE-MAKERS DURING THIS YEAR’S BASELWORLD WATCH SHOW. TOPPING THE LIST FOR CRAFTMANSHIP AND DESIGN WAS THE LATEST OFFERING FROM THE VAUNTED WATCHMAKERS By Rian Locke

Basel World 2015 was again filled with excitement this year and one of the highlights was the unveiling of the Laurent Ferrier Galet Square. The buzz surrounding the brand and their amazing creations are well earned in the watch community. It’s not marketing. It’s just great watchmaking.

However before we speak of the Galet Square, it’s important to understand a little about the man behind the brand.

Watchmaking runs in the blood of Ferrier Laurent. Both his grandfather and father were in the trade. He was born in 1946 in the watchmaking capital of the world – Geneva, Switzerland. He pursued both his passions — watchmaking and racing cars (Laurent placed third in LeMans in 1979, behind Paul Newman, while working for the horological powerhouse, Patek Philippe).

Laurent was in charge of the creation of several of the exceptionally traditional products, and after 37 years with the firm founded the brand bearing his name. Dedicated to the highest standards in innovation, craftsmanship, tradition and timeless aesthetic appeal, at Basel World 2010 the brand presented the Galet Classic, which later that year won the very prestigious award at the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix for Favourite Men’s Watch. It goes without say, the company was immediately recognized among the most snobbish watch enthusiast as one of the supreme brands worthy of the connoisseur’s attention.

New to the Laurent Ferrier collection is the Galet Square, and it embodies the brand’s characteristics that will make this another instant classic. The word “Square” is self-explanatory — the outstanding feature is the new shape of the case, a softened square measuring 41 mm x 41 mm. True to the spirit of the Galet models, the redesigned case is clearly, conscientiously executed and in harmony with the brand’s artistic vision, while giving it a slightly bolder wrist presence. Still, it features a timeless elegance, foregoing the loud, brass, designs seen in many watches today. It’s a watch lover’s watch; for those that appreciate true beauty in fine watchmaking. Of the three versions of this watch, two are the first stainless steel cases in the collection and the other is in rose gold.

The new case is complemented by a round dial that exudes class in all three versions. The signature version (according to many) features a sunburst gold-toned dial with white gold hour-markers at 12, 3 and 9 o’clock, and small seconds at 6 o’clock. The second version features a vertical satin-brushed finish on a blue dial with a velvety sheen, eleven white gold hour-markers and small seconds at 6 o’clock. The rose-gold case version offers a rich chocolate brown dial with eleven rose-gold hour-makers as well as small seconds at 6 o’clock. Featured are similarly shaped hands as with all the watches from the Galet family, which subtly shows the high level of craftsmanship and design. The dial is not just charming to behold, but also very readable.

Galet Square has inherited the third in-house movement developed, assembled and adjusted in the Laurent Ferrier workshops. This self-winding caliber is called FBN 229.01 with a micro-rotor (the micro-rotor is fitted between the main plate and micro- rotor bridge) and three-day power reserve. The balance is equipped with silicon escapement featuring double direct impulse. The highly decorative finishing can be viewed through the sapphire crystal case back. The heart and soul of this watch has remained at the highest standard for watch lovers at all levels.

The progression of the Laurent Ferrier brand has brought them to the Galet Square, which is a popular addition. There is no compromising when it comes to the core values of the brand. It simply pushes the envelope just enough for the admirer to take a fresh look. It is a watch for one who is not trying to make a brass statement. It is for those confident individuals who understand that less is more.

It is also for the true watch aficionado. There is a lot to appreciate that is below the surface. The stainless steel versions retail for $38,000 USD and the rose-gold for $53,000.

This is a watch for the man with refined taste and class. It’s another timeless classic by a young brand that continues to raise the bar of excellence.

Technical Characteristics

  • Self-winding with pawl-fitted micro-rotor
  • Silicon escapement with double direct impulse on the balance
  • A silent block shock protection system for micro-rotor
  • 72 hour power reserve
  • Indications: hours, minutes, small seconds at 6 o’clock
  • Number of parts: 186
  • Number of jewels: 35
  • Case diameter: 41 mm x 41 mm
  • Water resistance: to 30 m