Girard-Perregaux are undeniably one of the top luxury Swiss watch brands in the world and have been in production since 1791. If you’re in the market for a new Swiss watch and you’re not sure where to start, consider Girard-Perregaux. Their exquisite construction, timeless style, and ultra-precise functionality will have you the talk of the town.
The History of Girard-Perregaux
Girard-Perregaux were founded in 1791 by watchmaker Constantin Constant, who made clocks and watches in full public view in the assembly room of his shop in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. In 1829, Constant’s apprentice, the dynamic Parisian entrepreneur and watchmaker Jean-Francois Bautte, joined him and launched the Girard-Perregaux brand in the world’s most important watchmaking cities: La Chaux-de-Fonds, Geneva, and Paris. Over the following 150 years, the company made its mark on the world of haute horologerie with some of the most impressive watches ever created.
- Swiss Made Quality: Every Girard-Perregaux timepiece is crafted in La Chaux-de-Fonds, home to some of the finest Swiss watchmaking for more than 200 years.
- Innovation: The brand has pushed watchmaking boundaries with its numerous complications, from the first 1791 tourbillon with three gold bridges to the iconic Septème de Minute Tourbillon.
- Craftsmanship: Master watchmakers from Switzerland combine traditional craftsmanship with cutting-edge technology to create exceptional timepieces.
Girard-Perregaux Watch Models
The brand offers different models, to cater to a wide range of tastes. Whether you prefer an elegant dress watch, or an eye-catching sporty chronograph, Girard-Perregaux has a watch to suit your needs.
Girard-Perregaux’s most iconic watch is the Laureato. First introduced in 1975, the Laureato is a classic and timeless classic, featuring an octagonal bezel, a rounded case, and a choice of quartz, automatic or mechanical movements.
The 1966 Collection of watches encompasses all the characteristics of the classic Girard-Perregaux design. The collection is designed with subtle details, such as luminescent hands for improved readability and an ergonomically designed crown for easy winding and setting.
Cat’s Eye Collection
The Cat’s Eye collection is a line of watches specifically designed for women. The watches feature a distinctive diamond-encrusted bezel, making them truly eye-catching. The collection also features mother-of-pearl dials and diamond-set hour markers.
Girard-Perregaux have certainly earned their reputation as one of the world’s top Swiss watchmakers. With their timeless style, unsurpassed craftsmanship and cutting-edge technology, the brand has something to offer every watch aficionado. From the classic Laureato to the glamorous Cat’s Eye, you’ll find an exquisite timepiece to suit your style and budget. If you’re in the market for a Swiss watch, Girard-Perregaux should definitely be at the top of your list.
Girard-Perregaux SA (French: [ʒiʁaʁ pɛʁəɡo]) is a luxury Swiss watch manufacture with its origins dating back to 1791. In 2022, then-owner French luxury group Kering sold its stake in Sowind Group SA, the parent company of Girard-Perregaux, via management buyout.
Headquartered in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, the company opened the Girard-Perregaux Museum near its headquarters in Villa Marguerite in 1999. It is best known for the historic Tourbillon with three gold bridges, which was awarded a gold medal at the 1889 International Exposition in Paris soon after the launch of the watch. Other notable models from the company include the collection 1966, Vintage 1945, and models such as Tri-Axial Tourbillon and Laureato, an icon inspired from the 1970s.
In 1791, watchmaker and goldsmith Jean-François Bautte signed his first watches. He created a manufacturing company in Geneva, grouping for the first time ever all the watchmaking facets of that time. This included the engineering of the watch all the way to the final hand-assembly and hand-polishing of each piece. In 1832, Jacques Bautte and Jean-Samuel Rossel succeeded Jean Bautte, becoming the head of the company.
In 1852, the watchmaker Constant Girard founded Girard & Cie in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. He then married Marie Perregaux in 1854, and the Girard-Perregaux Manufacture was founded in 1856. In 1906, Constant Girard-Gallet, who took over control of the Manufacture from his father, acquired the Bautte House and merged it with Girard-Perregaux & Cie.
Since the quartz crisis, the brand has pursued its activities by reinforcing from the 1980s its position in the domain of high-quality mechanical watches. Since late 1980s, Girard-Perregaux has been a part of the Swiss Sowind Group.
In 1999, the Villa Marguerite, a building in La Chaux-de-Fonds from the beginning of the 20th century, became the Girard-Perregaux Museum. A selection of old watches and documents illustrating the history of the brand was presented there, before its closure.
In 2011, Sowind Group, the Swiss holding incorporating Girard-Perregaux, became a subsidiary of the French luxury group Kering. In 2012, Girard-Perregaux launched the Le Corbusier Watch Trilogy, paying a tribute to the famous architect. In 2021, Girard-Perregaux partnered with the luxury car manufacturer Aston Martin.
Girard-Perregaux relies on being a manufacturer of movements and watches, and a manufacturer of cases and bands. They bring together some tens of different components: watchmakers, engineers, movement decorators, polishers, etc. This global approach, founded on the traditional know-how of the watchmaking craftsmanship, allows them to create and direct high quality watches and movements from the assembly stages all the way to the final encasement.
Girard-Perregaux designs, manufactures and develops its own movements:
The Manufacture has approximately 80 patents in the watchmaking domain and is the originator of many innovative concepts.
It is the emblematic model of Girard-Perregaux. In 1884, Constant Girard submitted to the United States Patent Office a patent of the design of the movement “Tourbillon with three gold bridges.” The three bridges were redesigned in the form of arrows and placed parallel to each other. The movement was no longer just a functional and technical element, but it also became an element of design in every way. In 1889, the Tourbillon with three gold bridges was awarded a gold medal at the Universal Exposition of Paris.
In 1980, Girard-Perregaux decided to make 20 pieces to conform to the original of 1889: 1500 hours of work were necessary to create the first one. To celebrate its bicentenary in 1991, the company created a miniaturized wristwatch version of its famed Tourbillon with three gold Bridges. Since then, it is offered in different versions, and is sometimes associated with other watchmakers’ complications.
Vintage 1945 has a rectangular case and a design inspired by an Art Deco style watch dating back to 1945. The Vintage 1945 is powered by the Girard-Perregaux 9600-0019, mechanical self-winding movement, an all in-house movement.
In 2012, Girard-Perregaux introduced a new Girard-Perregaux 1966 Full Calendar and a 1966 Chronograph, which has been highlighted as a new grand classic by Girard-Perregaux themselves. This Girard-Perregaux 1966 is a slightly larger faced model than previously issued by the watchmaker at 42 mm and may be a sign of the changing demands upon watchmakers by the watch enthusiast community.
The Laureato was born in 1975. Its original design featured an integrated bracelet and an octagonal bezel. In the 1980s, the Laureato models mostly featured quartz movements.
In 1995, to celebrate the Laureato’s 20th anniversary, the Manufacture decided to relaunch the model, this time equipped with a calibre GP3100 automatic movement, with three hands and a date. In 2005, a sportier version of the Laureato, named the Evo3, designating the model’s third major evolution, was presented. In 2016, for the 225th Anniversary of the brand, the Laureato collection returned to centre stage thanks to a re-design of its lines, aimed to be as close as possible to its original features: octagonal bezel and fully-integrated bracelet were back. However, the movement fitted into the steel case was not a quartz, but a GP3300 movement.
Since 2017, new models combining different case materials, such as pink gold, titanium, steel and ceramic, along with blue, black or silver hobnail-pattern (“Clou de Paris”) dial have joined the Laureato collection. The latest addition is a sapphire case model, presented in 2020, the Laureato Absolute Light.
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