Holding a prestigious position among historic Swiss luxury watch brands that have been around for centuries, Vacheron Constantin is believed to be the oldest manufacturer of fine timepieces in continuous operation, followed closely by Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe. Together, they form the “big three” – a trinity of iconic names in the industry.

It was in 1755 that the company began to take shape, and it all started with a 24-year-old master watchmaker by the name of Jean-Marc Vacheron, who decided to sign on his first apprentice and seal the deal with an official contract. The contract was rediscovered many decades later, and before that even the company was unclear about its exact date of birth.

J.M. Vacheron’s passion and dedication to the craft was strong enough to survive through generations and thus it kept the company going even during critically harsh times, such as The Great Depression and World War II. Both his son and his grandson shared his talent and love for Swiss luxury, and they all played crucial parts in the watchmaker’s remarkable history of innovation and success.

As the business grew larger, the need for a good partner became increasingly apparent. Jacques Barthélémi Vacheron, the founder’s grandson, discovered the much needed help in a talented and visionary entrepreneur named François Constantin. The business received a new name – Vacheron et Constantin – as well as new horizons. With the help of a new partner, the company’s iconic Swiss luxury watches reached new markets, including that of North America.

It was Constantin who coined the company’s famous motto that says: “Do better if possible, and that is always possible”. Still relevant today, those words have been guiding Vacheron Constantin watchmakers for centuries, and we are happy to present to you some of their most inspiring creations. Keep reading our following Swiss luxury watch reviews for more remarkable watchmaking stories.Jean-Marc Vacheron Constantin

Source : Vacheron Constantin

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Ajourées for Only Watch 2015

Created for the Only Watch 2015 charity event, the spectacular Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Ajourées timepiece draws its inspiration from the imposing European railway stations and their impressive architecture. With many decades of experience in creating beautiful openwork calibers, Vacheron Constantin took the art of engraving one step further, bringing it very close to the art of sculpture.

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The original in-house Caliber 4400 movement was transformed into a horological masterpiece by cutting out almost half of the solid material, thus inviting light to reach inside the mechanism and cast eye-catching shadows and reflections as if on a three dimensional work of art. Instead of using the classic tools which typically rendered straight lines and sharp angles, the master artisans have carefully hand-crafted the movement following smooth curves and a new interlacing pattern of interior juxtapositions.

Ajourees by Vacheron Constantin

Metiers d'Art Mecaniques Ajourees for Only Watch 2015

Swiss luxury - Metiers d'Art Mecaniques Ajourees

Vacheron Constantin - Swiss luxury watch brands

For an even more spectacular effect, the various components received different finishes – some polished, others matte – creating a pleasing contrast of textures. The one-off luxury watch was then further embellished with another artistic craft which Vacheron Constantin has employed for many of its creations since its inception, namely Grand Feu enameling. The deep red color of the enamel is one of the most difficult to work with using the Grand Feu technique, and the circular application along a ring poses another set of challenges, given the increased risk of distortion. However, the challenge was welcomed by the fabled watch manufacturer, and the result is nothing short of flawless.

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Metiers d'Art Mecaniques Ajourees Watch

Technical data:

Reference: 82020/000G-B143
Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Caliber: 4400SQ
Developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin
Mechanical, manual-winding
28.60 mm (12 ’’’ ½) diameter
2.80 mm thick
Approximately 65 hours power reserve
4Hz (28’800 vibrations/hour)
127 components
21 jewels
Hand-engraved openworked caliber on front and back

Indications: Hours, minutes

Case: 18K white gold
40 mm diameter, 7.50 mm thick
Transparent sapphire crystal caseback
Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 meters)

Dial: Red Grand Feu opaque enameled external ring
Openworked Roman numerals on an 18K gold ring
“ONLY WATCH” openworked on the 18K gold ring, at 3 o’clock

Strap: Black Mississippiensis alligator leather strap with alligator leather inner shell, stitched-tip, large square scales

Clasp: 18K white gold buckle
Half Maltese cross-shaped

Accessory: Delivered with a magnifying glass
Unique piece for ONLY WATCH
“2015” and “N°1/1” engraved on the back of the timepiece

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Harmony Collection – Limited Edition Timepieces

Harmony Collection – Limited Edition Timepieces24

Harmony Collection – Limited Edition Timepieces3

Harmony Collection – Limited Edition Timepieces29

Harmony Collection – Limited Edition Timepieces53

Harmony is the latest collection of luxury timepieces from Vacheron Constantin. Its launch marks the company’s 260th birthday and the first seven models represent limited anniversary issues. The timepieces are inspired by the watchmaker’s first wristwatch chronographs, which were manufactured in 1928, but they feature fresh contemporary aesthetics based on a brand new cushion shape.

The first four timepieces in the collection pay tribute to the chronograph complication itself. Interestingly enough, the first ever chronograph complication was actually produced by Vacheron Constantin in 1873 for pocket watches that were used mainly by doctors.

The new self-winding Caliber 3500 is only 5.20 mm thick, making it the thinnest monopusher pulsimeter chronograph in the world; Caliber 3300 is also a monopusher pulsimeter chronograph, but with manual winding, and it represents the closest variation to the original 1928 caliber; Caliber 3200 is a monopusher tourbillon chronograph with a manually-wound mechanism; Caliber 1142 is a manually-wound double-pusher ladies’ chronograph.

The last three watches in the line feature an all-new dual-time movement, Caliber 2640DT, which successfully merges tradition with cutting-edge technologies and manufacturing techniques. Two of them are dedicated to men and are available in pink or white gold, while the last one is a white gold piece with glamorous diamond adornments.

Historiques Cornes de Vache 1955

Characterized by a pleasing juxtaposition of old and new, the Cornes de Vache 1955 chronograph represents a contemporary interpretation of an iconic Vacheron Constantin model, created back in 1955. The original timepiece was the watchmaker’s first water-resistant, anti-magnetic chronograph, and it remains to this day one of their three most coveted watches by vintage collectors.

Vacheron Cornes de Vache 1955 Chronograph

Historiques Cornes de Vache 1955

Vacheron Cornes de Vache

Cornes de Vache 1955 watch

Cornes de Vache 1955 Legendary Chronograph

Aesthetically, the new timepiece features a subtle tension between curves and straight lines, as well as between classical elegance and modern adornments. The traditional round case is topped by beautifully stylized ‘cornes de vache’ or ‘cow-horn’ lugs, for an overall look that is bold and full of character.

While the original watch featured a 35-mm 18kt gold case, the new one has a larger, 38.5-mm case in 950 platinum. The slight difference in size allows for improved readability due to an airier display of dial and subdial elements. Legibility was also enhanced by the royal blue tachometric scale, 30-minute counter hand, and central seconds hand. The applied Roman numeral hour markers and the hands are made of 18kt white gold.

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Vacheron Cornes de Vache 1955

Vacheron Constantin Cornes de Vache 1955

Cornes de Vache 1955 chronograph

Vacheron Constantin has come a long way since the introduction of their very first chronograph complication in an 1877 pocket watch. Almost 140 years later, the Cornes de Vache 1955 makes a wonderful addition to the Historiques collection, flaunting a hand-wound Caliber 1142 with a 48-hour power reserve, a 3 Hz frequency, and 164 hand-decorated movement parts, some of which can be easily admired through the sapphire caseback.

Technical data

Reference: 5000H/000P-B058

Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

 

Calibre: 1142

Developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin

Mechanical, manual-winding

27.5 mm (12’’’) diameter, 5.6 mm thick

Approximately 48 hours of power reserve

3Hz (21,600 vibrations/hour)

164 components

21 jewels

 

Indications: Hours, minutes

Small seconds at 9 o’clock

Column-wheel chronograph (30-minute counter)

 

Case: Platinum 950

38.5 mm diameter, 10.9 mm thick

Transparent sapphire crystal caseback

Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 meters)

 

Dial: Silvered opaline center with sun-brushed external zone (minute-track and tachometer scale)

18K white gold applied hour-markers

 

Strap: Dark blue Mississippiensis alligator leather with alligator leather inner shell, hand-stitched, saddle-finish, large square scales

 

Buckle: Platinum 950 buckle

Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées Collection

Marking the 260th anniversary of Vacheron Constantin, these two stunning luxury timepieces represent a glorious return to the company’s roots by bringing classic ornamental traditions into the limelight. As we’ve come to expect of every new addition to the Métiers d’Art collection, they beautifully incorporate fine art into the watchmaking process.

In both models, the distinctive feature is the incredibly detailed hand-engraved movement. The plates and bridges feature intricate floral, scrolling and arabesque motifs which speak volumes about the extreme dexterity of the master artisans who worked on them. To better demonstrate the skill of these artists, Vacheron Constantin decided to not make any changes in dimension to the original movements before starting to engrave them.

Both Caliber 2260 and Caliber 4400 have kept their slender figures untouched, meaning that no part was thickened in order to make the engraver’s work easier. Consequently, the artisan had to carve out material from miniature pieces that were less than one millimeter thick, sometimes thinning them down to 0.35 mm. The task was so demanding, that one movement took more than ten days of painstaking work to complete.

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Caliber 2260 was placed inside a 41-mm 950 platinum round case, and it is a 14-day mechanical hand-wound tourbillon movement. Its 280° power reserve window allows for a very precise division into exactly 14 days, as well as 12-hour subdivisions for extra precision. Water resistant to 30 meters, it features a sapphire crystal back which offers a generous view of the 231-part movement.

Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art 2260

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées luxury timepieces

Métiers d’Art collection

Métiers d’Art Caliber 2260

Vacheron Constantin luxury timepieces Caliber 2260

Metiers d’Art Mecaniques Gravees 2260

Métiers d’Art Vacheron Constantin

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées Collection

Métiers d’Art luxury timepieces

Technical data

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées – 14-day tourbillon

Reference: 6000A/000P-B026

Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Only available in Vacheron Constantin Boutiques

 

Caliber: 2260/1

Developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin

Mechanical, manual-winding

29.1 mm (12’’’¾) diameter

6.8 mm thick

Approximately 336 hours (14 days) of power reserve

2.5 Hz (18,000 vibrations/hour)

231 components

31 jewels

Hand-engraved caliber on front and back with “acanthus leaves” pattern

(copper-plate and champlevé)

 

Indications: Hours

Minutes

Small seconds at 6’oclock on tourbillon carriage

Power reserve

Tourbillon

 

Case: Platinum 950

41 mm diameter, 12.35 mm thick

Transparent sapphire crystal caseback

Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 meters)

 

Dial: Central zone: sapphire glass, engraved and inked indications

External zone: slate-colored metal external ring with transferred minute-track

 

Bracelet: Dark blue Mississippiensis alligator leather strap, hand-stitched, saddle-finish, large square scales

 

Buckle: Platinum 950 buckle

Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

 

Accessory: Delivered with a magnifying glass

Caliber 4400 is also housed in a round 950 platinum case and it features 127 different parts. It has almost three days of power reserve, and it drives hour and minute functions. While the previous model has a perfectly transparent dial, this one features no dial whatsoever, but the white gold hands and slate grey minute outer circle makes everything perfectly legible. Also water resistant to 30 meters, this model too features a transparent back.

Calibre 4400 d’Art Mécaniques Gravées luxury timepieces

Métiers d’Art collection Calibre 4400

Métiers d’Art luxury timepieces calibre 4400

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées Collection Calibre 4400

Métiers d’Art Vacheron Constantin 4400

Vacheron Constantin luxury timepieces Caliber 4400

Vacheron Constantin Boutiques Caliber 4400

Métiers d’Art Caliber 4400

Mechanical manual-winding Vacheron 4400

Technical data

Métiers d’Art Mécaniques Gravées

Reference: 1100A/000P-B026

Hallmark of Geneva certified timepiece

Only available in Vacheron Constantin Boutiques

 

Caliber: 4400/1

Developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin

Mechanical, manual-winding

28.6 mm (12’’’½) diameter

2.8 mm thick

Approximately 65 hours of power reserve

4 Hz (28,800 vibrations/hour)

127 components

21 jewels

Hand-engraved caliber on front and back with “acanthus leaves” pattern

(copper-plate and champlevé)

 

Indications: Hours, minutes

 

Case: Platinum 950

39 mm diameter, 8.5 mm thick

Transparent sapphire crystal caseback

Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 meters)

 

Dial: Slate-colored metal external ring with transferred minute-track

 

Bracelet: Dark blue Mississippiensis alligator leather strap, hand-stitched, saddle-finish, large square scales

 

Buckle: Platinum 950 buckle

Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

 

Accessory: Delivered with a magnifying glass

Métiers d’Art Savoirs Enluminés

Another example of Vacheron Constantin’s undisputed creativity and expertise in artistic crafts, the Savoir Enluminés line is a superb addition to the brand’s fabled Métiers d’Art collection. This is a limited series of only 60 units which celebrate the marriage of exceptional watchmaking expertise and absolute mastery of the decorative arts.

The range is inspired by historic illuminated manuscripts, more specifically an ancient Celtic manuscript called Aberdeen Bestiary, which was recovered during the Middle Ages, and which amazes with the quality of its miniaturized decorations. Old illuminations represented miniature works of decorative art which accompanied old handwritten documents.

This art required the harmonious collaboration of painters, gilders and scribes for a beautiful and unitary outcome. The same type of close communication was also what ensured the success of the Savoir Enluminés project, with watchmaking experts working closely with master artisans for spectacular results.

Drawing inspiration from the 12th century Celtic “book of beasts”, each timepiece features an incredibly detailed illustration of an animal, representing a different human emotion or character trait. The 22-carat gold dials make for excellent backdrops onto which the miniature enameled masterpieces are displayed.

Adding to the artistic complexity of the watches, the movements boast an original hour display, which was developed in keeping with the traditions of haute horlogerie. Three hour wheels, each carrying four numerals, take turns in indicating the hour across a fixed 60-minute gradation on the right side of the dial. A subtle golden background of old letters brings the entire design together and adds a poetic touch to the time-reading experience.

Vacheron Savoir Enlumines

Vacheron Constantin Savoir

Vacheron Savoir Enlumines Caliber 1120

Vacheron Constantin Enlumines

Vacheron Constantin Savoir Enluminés

Vacheron Constantin Savoir

Savoir Enlumines Caliber 1120

Métiers d’Art Savoirs Enluminés Vacheron

Savoir Enluminés

Vacheron Savoir luxury watch

Savoir Enluminés luxury watches

Savoir Enluminés Caliber 1120

Metiers d'Art Savoirs Enlumine

Métiers d’Art Savoirs Enluminés

Vacheron Enluminés Swiss watch brand

Vacheron Enluminés Swiss watch brand

Swiss watch brand Vacheron Savoir Enlumines

Savoir Enluminés Swiss watch

Savoir Enluminés expensive watches

Métiers d’Art Vacheron Swiss watch brand

Métiers d’Art Vacheron Caliber 1120

Métiers d’Art Vacheron Constantin

Technical data

Métiers d’Art Savoirs Enluminés

Reference: 7000S/000G-B001 – Vultures

7000S/000G-B002 – Caper

7000S/000G-B003 – Altion

Hallmark of Geneva certified timepieces

Only available in Vacheron Constantin Boutiques

 

Caliber: 1120 AT

Developed and manufactured by Vacheron Constantin

Mechanical self-winding, with dragging hours additional mechanism

32.80 mm (12’’’½) diameter

5.45 mm thick

Approximately 40 hours of power reserve

2.75 Hz (19’800 vibrations/hour)

205 components

36 jewels

 

Indications: Hours, minutes

Time indicated by Arabic numerals mounted on satellite-wheels

The hours move one after the other across a 120° scale located on the lower dial

 

Case: 18K white gold

40 x 49.45 mm, 10.30 mm thick

Transparent sapphire crystal caseback

Water-resistance tested at a pressure of 3 bar (approx. 30 meters)

Name of the inspiration model engraved on caseband

 

Dial: Two-level dial:

Upper dial : hand-textured champlevé gold base with Grand Feu miniature enameling

Lower dial : polished letters in relief on a grained gold base

 

Strap: Brown Mississippiensis alligator leather strap, hand-stitched, saddle-finish, large square scales

 

Buckle: 18K white gold triple blade folding clasp

Polished half Maltese cross-shaped

 

Accessories: Delivered with a magnifying glass, a pair of gloves and a dedicated brochure to better showcase the craftsmanship and technicality behind these creations

 

Limited edition of 20 pieces for each model

« N°X/20 » engraved on the back of each timepiece

Overseas and Overseas Dual Time Limited Editions

Created for refined travelers, the Overseas and Overseas Dual Time limited edition watches flaunt a wonderful mix of classic elegance and sporty sophistication. They represent an impossible-to-refuse invitation to embark on a new journey of discovery and adventure. The ultramarine color of the dial evokes the oceans which a regular traveler often crosses in their quest for new horizons.

 

Overseas and Overseas Dual Time Limited Editions

The Overseas model is powered by a mechanical self-winding Caliber 1226 movement, and it indicates the hour, minutes, seconds, and date. For the Overseas Dual Time version, Vacheron Constantin used a self-winding Caliber 1222 SC mechanism with a few extra functions in addition to the other model’s: a dual-time display – as the name suggests, day/night indication and a power-reserve display.

Both movements beat at a frequency of 28,800 vph and can work without winding for approximately 40 hours. A soft iron case is integrated into the timepiece case itself to ensure protection from magnetic fields. Being fit for explorers, the watches also boast a water resistance of 15 bar (approx. 150 meters or 492 feet). The simple date version is limited to 350 units, while the Dual Time one is a 300-unit issue.

Vacheron Constantin Overseas 47040

Overseas (simple date)

Technical data

Overseas (simple date)

 

Reference: 47040/000A-9008

 

Caliber: 1226

Mechanical, self-winding

Anti-magnetic protection

26.6 mm (11’’’ ¼) diameter

3.25 mm thick

Approximately 40 hours of power reserve

4 Hz (28,000 vibrations/hour)

143 components

36 jewels

 

Indications: Hours, minutes

Center seconds

Date

 

Case: Stainless steel

42 mm diameter, 9.7 mm thick

Screwed-down crown

Solid case-back with stamped “Overseas” medallion

Water resistance tested at a pressure of 15 bar (approx. 150 meters)

 

Dial: Vanished blue shiny dial, white painted indications

Hands and hour-markers in 18K gold, pfinodal seconds hand

Hours and minutes hands and hour-markers with white luminescent material

 

Strap: Blue rubber

Delivered with a second blue Mississippiensis alligator leather strap, hand-stitched, large square scales

 

Clasp: Stainless steel triple blade folding clasp, double security with buttons

 

Limited edition of 350 timepieces

Vacheron Constantin Overseas Dual Time 47450

Overseas dual time

Technical data

Overseas dual time

Reference: 47450/000A-9039

 

Caliber: 1222 SC

Mechanical, self-winding

Anti-magnetic protection

26.6 mm (11’’’ ¼) diameter

4.85 mm thick

Approximately 40 hours of power reserve

4 Hz (28,000 vibrations/hour)

153 components

34 jewels

 

Indications: Hours, minutes

Center seconds

Hand-type date

Second time zone with day/night indication

Power reserve

 

Case: Stainless steel

42 mm diameter, 12.45 mm thick

Screwed-down crown and pushpiece

Solid case-back with stamped “Overseas” medallion

Water resistance tested at a pressure of 15 bar (approx. 150 meters)

 

Dial: Vanished blue shiny dial, white painted indications

Blue snailed counters with rhodiumized diamond-polished filets

Hands and hour-markers in 18K gold, pfinodal seconds hand

Hours and minutes hands and hour-markers with white luminescent material

 

Strap: Blue rubber

Delivered with a second blue Mississippiensis alligator leather strap, hand-stitched, large square scales

 

Clasp: Stainless steel triple blade folding clasp, double security with buttons

 

Limited edition of 300 timepieces