While preparing to celebrate its 225th anniversary, Swiss luxury watch manufacture Girard-Perregaux returned to its iconic Laureato and the original design premise.
Backed by the manufacturing arts and micromechanics expertise, over 40 years after the first steel Laureato was introduced and as a tribute to its success, the Brand is honoring the timepiece with a limited edition of 225.
The historic roots of an iconic model
In 1975, Girard-Perregaux introduced the Laureato, a timepiece that single-handedly broke all the conventions of that time in terms of the shape, the materials and the movement. Suggested by Girard-Perregaux's Italian distributor, the name is a nod to the film world. It is inspired by and indeed bears the same name in Italian as the Mike Nichols film The Graduate (1967) starring Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft and Katharine Ross.
While today the Laureato's design is obviously iconic, when it was first released Girard-Perregaux was focusing its efforts on completing a pivotal technological advance. At a time when the arrival of quartz in Swiss watchmaking was threatening to upset the most established balances, the Brand began developing a quartz movement in-house.
By setting the quartz's oscillation frequency at 32,768 Hz, Girard-Perregaux set the standard for quartz movement timekeeping. This was when dials were first beginning to be marked with "Quartz Chronometer," as are all watches that pass a stringent inspection for precision even today. This standard is still the quality benchmark and the international standard for makers of quartz movements.
1984: First upgrade
In 1984, complications were added to the Laureato that increased its allure and presence across all market segments. This is when it was equipped with the famous Equation movements that supplied astronomical indicators.
1995: Larger dimensions and complications
In order to accommodate the slimline self-winding mechanical GP 3100 movement, the Laureato's dimensions had to be enlarged with a new construction that did not at all affect its original proportions. There was more room for the bezel and case-band while the links in the bracelet began resembling an H.
In 1996, the chronograph version led to the Olimpico collection and in 1998 this design change resulted in encasing the well-known Tourbillon with Three Gold Bridges movement, a signature feature that is synonymous with Girard-Perregaux.
With a self-winding mechanical chronograph movement, the now famous Laureato design entered the third millennium by advancing toward diameters larger than 40 mm. The Laureato EVO3 case came in at 44 mm and had an octagonal bezel – the first one to be satin-brushed – that was nestled inside and enhanced by the circle. Seamlessly integrated, the screwed winder and push-pieces showcased the collection's sporty style.
The collection was then developed with versions of the Laureato Tourbillon with Three Bridges that were completely transparent. Bridges made of sapphire as well as blue spinel presented a levitating effect and as a result the model met with phenomenal success.
Created in 1975 and faithfully re-released for the 225th anniversary, the Laureato joins this hall of fame for iconic models.
Model: Laureato 2016
Silvered dial reference: 81000-11-131-11A
Blue dial reference: 81000-11-431-11A
Case and dial
Diameter: 41.00 mm
Thickness: 10.10 mm
Crystal: anti-reflective sapphire
Dial: Silvered or blue with “Clous de Paris” pattern
Hands: baton-shaped luminescent hands
Case-back: anti-reflective sapphire crystal
Water-resistance: 30 meters (3 ATM)
Girard-Perregaux movement GP03300-0030
Mechanical with automatic winding
Diameter: 25.60 mm (11 1/2 ’’’)
Height: 3.20 mm
Frequency: 28,800 vph - (4 Hz)
Power reserve: min. 46 hours
Hour, minute, central second, date