I feel like this has been going on for years and people are only starting to come to this conclusion now — Bulgari produce beautiful watches of astounding complexity and should be regarded by any half-knowledgeable watch lover as a serious high-watchmaking company. They make grande sonneries with Westminster chimes and perpetual calendars. They make grande sonneries with tourbillons. (It goes without saying that their grande sonnerie watches also include petite sonnerie and minute repeater functions.) They make carillon minute repeaters. They make chiming watches with detailed dial automata. They innovate in materials such as the Magsonic alloy for optimum chime transmission. And, oh, by the way, they now have record-setting ultra-thin minute repeater watches.
At this point in the conversation, someone usually brings up the fact that these watches really originate from the Gérald Genta portfolio, but as far as I’m concerned this objection is a complete non-starter. Plenty of prestigious brands have acquired companies that strengthened their in-house capabilities, companies that previously supplied their complicated ébauches. Not all of these brands have used their acquisitions as well as Bulgari have, I’ll tell you that. (What is the use of buying a legendary Stradivarius if you can’t play it properly?) And don’t forget that Bulgari acquired Gérald Genta in 1999, which was 17 years ago and also literally last millennium. Get over it already.
Plus, let’s face it — who are these people picking on Bulgari and dismissing their legitimate work? Answer: Snobs. Advice: Don’t be one of them.
Even if you take off a few marks for standing on the shoulders of horological giants (specious practice unless applied to all modern watches, but we’ll run with it now for the sake of argument), the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater is still totally a BFD. Here are five outstandingly solid reasons to love the Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater.