We had the pleasure to be invited by bespoke watch manufacturer Hautlence to assist their 10 years celebration of the brand. Founded in 2004, and by breathing a new dynamic into the art of watchmaking, Hautlence is dedicated to paying tribute to the cradle of watchmaking, gaining recognition among watchmaking collectors and connoisseurs the world over. It has a portfolio of four calibres designed and developed in-house, while relying on external partners for the movements of certain collections. It launched the HL calibre in 2005, followed in 2009 by the HLQ calibre, with the brand’s third calibre, the HLC, hot on its heels. 2011 saw the introduction of the high-flying HL2.0 calibre in a variety of different versions.
They kicked of the festivities with an exhibition of their above mentioned iconic timepieces in the magnificent setting of the "Maison Dürrenmatt" at Neuchâtel, Switzerland. The watches were surrounded by artworks form Eric Cantona's private collection. Being the new testimonial for the brand he lend some street art inspired oeuvres to be shown with the watchmakers 10 year developments and of course a new watch a self-winding chronograph called "Invictus" from the Latin phrase meaning “unbeaten and unbeatable” and the butterfly of the same name. Following the Neuchâtel launch, the "Cross the Line" World Tour visits Singapore in November and Hong Kong in December. It will continue in 2015 and 2016 to an as yet unnamed number of destinations where Eric Cantona will present the fruits of his collaboration with Hautlence.
After the exhibition we headed down to the Case à Chocs where the party took place. Fine Champagne and wines were served and a magnificent seafood buffet filled the many hungry stomaches. We had the pleasure to have a long chat with Eric Cantona and Guillaume Tetu, (CEO and Co-founder) where they elaborated more about the great timepiece they made. It's a 250-piece limited edition, and nestled in a titanium case, the dial bears the colour and iridescent reflections of the large, magnificent blue butterfly for which it is named, while mother-of-pearl insets subtly illuminated with black decals emulate the markings on its wings. The case-back is numbered and engraved with the name “Invictus”, along with Eric Cantona’s signature and an engraving of his digital fingerprint - a kind of entrance pass to the Gentlemen Rebels Club of which he and every owner of a Hautlence timepiece are members.
If you like to see more about Hautlence please visit their website at http://hautlence.com