The latest timepiece for women from the Swiss manufacturer Chopard is the L.U.C XPS 35mm Esprit de Fleurier. This ultra-thin novelty exudes understated elegance and technical sophistication.
The new Chopard watch boasts a subtle mother-of-pearl blue dial and the impeccable in-house manufactured movement encrusted with fleurisanne engraving.
Chopard L.U.C XPS Esprit de Fleurier is housed in 18-karat white gold case wrapped in a diamond set bezel which delicately frames a mottled blue mother-of-pearl dial. The case measures 35mm in diameter and only 7.10mm in thickness.
Its shimmering dial comprises hour-markers, each graced with 2 brilliant-cut diamonds and the small seconds pirouette in a “flinqué” engraved sub-dial which is placed at the 6 o’clock position. On the opposite side there is Arabic number 12 and below it, there is the brand’s logo.
The beating heart of the new watch is the L.U.C Calibre 96.23-L which is certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). A twin-barrel self-winding mechanism is capable to store enough power to keep the watch ticking for at least 65 hours when fully wound. A clever micro-rotor construction highlights the inner beauty of the movement that is entirely decorated with fleurisanne engravings, which can be seen from the rear through the exhibition case back.
A speciality of the village of Fleurier that has been home to Chopard since 1996, fleurisanne engraving is now almost an extinct art, but in the 19th century, it contributed to the reputation of the local manufacturers and to the appeal of their timepieces that spread as far as China.
The age-old artisan engraving technique means that artisan cuts away the surrounding metal to leave the pattern he wishes to make stand out. After that, the raised surface is engraved with a scrolling pattern known as ‘volutes’ or with flowers, and polished to achieve a shiny effect. The background is hammer-stippled to give it a grainy effect. This extremely demanding skill requires the master engraver to dedicate considerable time to this process and to show absolute technical mastery.
Chopard L.U.C XPS 35mm Esprit de Fleurier is attached to a matching blue alligator leather strap. The retail price of this exceptional timepiece is CHF 45,000 (approximately $46,500).