The year 2019 is shaping up to be a significant one for François-Paul Journe and his eponymous manufacture. Not only is this year the 20th anniversary of the iconic Chronomètre à Resonance but it’s also the 20th anniversary of the Tourbillon Souverain.
The Tourbillon Souverain has been a consistent presence in Journe’s catalog since it was first released in 1999. That initial model was a limited release of 20 pieces and featured a remontoir d’égalité mechanism, which applies constant force. Journe upgraded the Tourbillon Souverain in 2003 with a natural deadbeat second and a movement construction in rose gold.
To commemorate 20 years since the watch first appeared, Journe has developed a tourbillon whose cage is vertical, rather than the traditional horizontal construction. This vertical tourbillon with remontoir d’égalité and deadbeat second makes one revolution every 30 seconds rather than the more common one-minute design. In Journe’s own words, the benefit of this vertical orientation is so “ that the tourbillon’s functions remain constant whether the watch lies flat or is placed on its side, and the amplitude is subsequently the same, whether with a deployant clasp lying on the side or with an ardillon buckle lying flat.”
Surrounding the tourbillon cage, a cone-shaped mirror-polished ring concentrates light, reflecting the cage itself. A second reflector was created on the movement side to provide light around the tourbillon cage. The 4N rose gold bridges that form the dial are decorated with clous de Paris guilloche with, for the first time, a grand feu enamel hour dial at 3 o’clock. The Tourbillon Souverain Vertical also features an 80-hour power reserve at 12 o’clock and small seconds at 6 o’clock; the remontoir d’égalité is placed at 7 o’clock.
The 42 mm case, which is an increase of 2 mm from previous Tourbillon Souverain designs, is available in platinum for CHF 248,400 or in 18k 6N red gold for CHF 244,500. Journe has announced that the new Tourbillon Souverain Vertical will replace the former Tourbillon Souverain within his production catalog moving forward.
Don’t miss seeing F.P. Journe at WatchTime Los Angeles — get your tickets now!