Vacheron Constantin Swiss Luxury Watches Reviews-Guide
Vacheron Constantin History
Today, Vacheron Constantin is one of the most established and admired watchmaking companies in the world. Its focus on high-end luxury timepieces made it also a very exclusive enterprise: few can afford to own a Vacheron Constantin watch, and even fewer can afford to wear it on daily basis.
It took the company, however, over two centuries of continuous creative effort and hard work to get there. Indeed, what separates the brand (and several other high-end Swiss luxury watchmakers) from many luxury goods producers is that they show by example the evolution of watchmaking – a complex, laborious and painstaking process.
In other words, each Vacheron Constantin watch justifies the high price tag. Whether it's one of the basic, classic designs from 100 years ago – a collectible valued more for its history – or an ultra-modern titanium encased timepiece with 27 jewels inside the mechanism – the wrist watch is worth the money asked.
Vacheron Constantin HeadquartersClick thumbnail to view full-size
The layered impression that the website leaves speaks soundly for a company whose concern is something as fleeting and intangible as time. The website lifts a curtain that reveals dimensions of legacy. The visuals, the eerie music (no longer available) that combines classical piano with ambient trance motifs transform your mood instantly, and with a surprise.
The official page (or rather a folio with inlayed pages – look for those) features downloadable media (wallpapers, screensavers, videos), historical overview of the company, an essay on landmark watches, an interactive catalog, and more. Definitely worth a visit, a must if you own, or plan on owning a piece.
The principles that guide Vacheron Constantin – excellence and continuous improvement, creativity, respect for tradition and social awareness and openness -- are distributed unevenly among the company's collections. Some are more traditionalist, others are more adventurous. Some are extremely simple, others are extremely complicated. Lets have a quick overview:
Patrimony features round, classic, elegant watches in a transparent design. The more complicated models, incorporating diamonds and precious metals, gravitate towards jewelry. Two “Grand Complication” variations (featuring highly elaborate designs and unique mechanic parts).
Malte can be divided into two currents. The first includes watches in the spirit of Patrimony collection, only they take more risks and feature more saturated designs. Diamonds mark the digits in some watches, while complexly detailed dials allow to separate the hours and minutes hands in others. The second (and arguably the strongest of the two) current consists of Grand Complication and Complication watches. These include openworked pieces with visible mechanisms and watches that include a tourbillon (a mechanical part used for aesthetic reasons – made visible via the openworked design).
Quai De L'ile is Vacheron Constantin's latest development – a true leap forward in the history of watchmaking, according to some critics. These are hyper modern watches encased in either pink gold, titanium or palladium, with a bejeweled movement and laser-engraved dials. That's not where the surprise hides, however; the real innovation is in the company's personalization service. Suffice it to say that you can order a gold case with a titanium bezel and palladium flanks.
Overseas covers the sports and travel niche. In my opinion this is Vacheron Constantin's least original collection: it follows the basic principles of urban, sleek design – but so do Rolex and Omega, and some might say they do it better. Of course, all the prerequisites of high-end luxury watchmaking are there; it's just that you begin to expect to see singular design everywhere, and there isn't such in the Overseas collection.
Ladies and jewelry timepieces: 1972 cambree, Egerie, Kalla Duchess, Kalla Lune and Lady Kalla. Exquisite watches in irregular shapes, bedecked with numerous diamonds and available in bright, “non-official” colors such as golden, pink and blue. The most striking quality in these watches is that they retain an elusive element of solemnity despite the rather free flowing designs.
Historiques and Cabinotiers. Rare watches associated with historical events, and incorporating unprecedented complications, respectively. In these two collections Vacheron Constantin “cash in” on their own long history.
Metiers D'Art, or “the art of Vacheron Constantin.” Collectible watches with encrusted aboriginal masks from various continents across the globe. No verbal description can do justice to these little jewels of design and conception. This is the cherry on top of the lush, lush layer of cream.