Pioneers of the Exceptional: Vacheron Constantin celebrates 175 years of Harrods

As Harrods marks 175 years since its inception, Vacheron Constantin honours the London legend with a special exhibition and an exclusive watch release

This year, the majestic green and gold-clad Knightsbridge institution that is Harrods marks 175 years as the world’s ultimate luxury emporium. Vacheron Constantin, the world’s oldest watchmaker and a pioneer of excellence and innovation in its own field, is honouring its long-time collaborator by offering a unique immersive experience at the heart of the iconic department store. The experience charts a shared adventure through time and exemplifies the unique spirit of age-old origins, shared by both companies.

Devotees of High Watchmaking are invited to ascend to the fifth floor of Harrods, where a space has been fitted out in Harrods’ iconic colours. The visit begins with a multi-sensory virtual reality experience – “The Exceptional Voyage”, powered by xydrobe – in a 20-seat cinema room inaugurated especially for the occasion.

Guests are then guided to an exhibition of a selection of Vacheron Constantin’s historically significant timepieces spanning nearly 270 years of horological innovation, including the Tour de l’Ile, created in 2005 for the Maison’s 250th anniversary. Archive images from Harrods are displayed alongside the exhibition to showcase the rich centuries-long dialogue between these two luxury trailblazers.

At the heart of the exhibition is the stunning single-piece edition watch specially created for the event, the Les Cabinotiers Armillary Tourbillon – High Jewellery, which will quicken the heart rate of any watch enthusiast. Representing both an artisanal challenge and a technical feat, it is set with 671 brilliant-cut diamonds on the case middle, lugs, bezel, dial flange and folding clasp. The 45mm platinum timepiece, created in Harrods’ signature colours, offers a striking contrast between the brilliance of the precious stones and the delicately matte-green mother of pearl adorning the mainplate and bridges, a first for Vacheron Constantin.

An exceptional in-house manual winding movement – the Calibre 1990 – beats at the heart of the watch and features an instantaneous double retrograde display of time indications coupled with a bi-axial armillary tourbillon. Titanium hands feature on a gem-set chapter ring punctuated with Roman numerals, the dial-free configuration giving pride of place to the armillary tourbillon positioned at 9 o'clock beneath a bubble formed by the sapphire crystal.

It’s a show-stopping timepiece that symbolises the spirit of excellence shared by two icons of the luxury world. How better to celebrate a birthday? Here's to the next 175 years.

Want more from Vacheron Constantin? Rediscover one of the Maison's iconic timepieces...

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