Right in time for the FIFA World Cup 2022, one of Walt Disney’s most famous characters returns to the watch dial, this time with a soccer ball. After the success of its “Smiling Mickey” timepiece unveiled in 2021, Bulgari is once again bringing Mickey Mouse to the forefront of the watchmaking scene in partnership with Gérald Genta. The charming character now occupies the center of the dial where he is depicted with a soccer ball hovering over his head at the 30-minute position. This rare triple complication watch features a retrograde date and minutes as well as a jumping hour. It is powered by self-winding Manufacture Calibre BVL300 with a 42-hour power reserve.
The mother-of-pearl dial reveals masterful craftsmanship, as it consists of 14 clichés (plates), which create the color pattern of the design based on the pad printing technique. Some areas of the motif are then coated with transparent lacquer in order to add brilliance, brightness, and volume to very specific details. In total, more than 20 manual operations are required to bring the Mickey Mouse to life.
Soccer is not Mickey Mouse’s first introduction to the world of sports, as he is known to have been a motor-racing driver and even a golf player in the past, notably with the golf club-shaped hand for the retrograde minutes indication on historical Gerald Genta watches. The famous watch designer, who passed away in 2011, first brought Mickey Mouse onto a watch dial in 1969.
The latest collectible is housed in a 41mm Arena steel case which is water-resistant to 100 meters and attached to a color-coordinated textile strap.
The Bulgari Gérald Genta Arena Bi-Retrograde With Mickey Mouse Playing Football is limited to 200 pieces and pricing is marked at $24,000.
To learn more, visit Bulgari, here.