Gresso is a Russian company specialising in luxury goods for those who simply cannot settle for ordinary or mainstream. There’s a niche market for these types of uber luxury products in the Arab Emirates, Russia and among newly wealthy Chinese mandarins hungry for exclusivity and cachet.
Gresso are perhaps best known for their exclusive range of luxury phones made from costly high-tech materials such as grade 5 titanium, which is slow and arduous to machine even though the final effect is nothing short of stunning. The one slight problem with a titanium mobile phone is that while it may certainly look the part and while the light yet strong casing might last a lifetime, you’ll be lucky if the technology that it contains will last two years. Indeed the specs are not entirely overwhelming to begin with. Gresso’s titanium mobile phone runs on a quad-core 1.2GHz processor, and has 36GB of internal storage, with a 4.5-inch Gorilla Glass display, the resolution is just 540 x 960 pixels.
Perhaps for this reason the company decided they needed to introduce another luxury sideline to their portfolio, one which will be a little more timeless, or at least timely. And so it was that they decided to venture into the already well represented world of luxury watches. Incidentally, in the same year, the company produced the world’s most expensive cell phone, the Luxor Las Vegas Jackpot, only three of which were produced, so one can imagine the elegant scrum to get hold of one. The price of the phone is US$1 million, and for that hefty outlay you get a phone made of 18k gold inlaid with black diamonds while the keyboard is made of sapphire. You can also talk to Gresso about your own costly and fully customised specifications, as well as order diamond inlaid cases for your Apple iPhone.
But back to the Gresso horological adventure, and, with three years in the making and with over 100 prototypes developed before satisfaction was finally achieved, the Gresso Grand Wind Skeleton has some unusual features. These include a large 18k gold rotor visible from the front. The 45mm watch has a case made also of 18k gold as well as light yet resilient carbon fibre. The watches in the collection are powered by an in-house developed self-winding movement known as the Gresso G1, which is based on ETA 2671. It beats at a frequency of 28, 800 semi-vibrations per hour with a power reserve of some 38 hours.
The dial of the watch shows two connecting windows, one featuring the rotor, the other showing the time. The bezel stands out with engraved gold hued Roman numerals at 12 o’ clock and 6 o’clock. Looking through the window you can observe the movement in operation, while in the other window you can see the second hand in the shape of a three-blade propeller. This innovative solution is a part of the uncommon movement used in the Grand Wind Skeleton watches to indicate seconds. The hours and minutes are read on the front of the watch, while the seconds can be viewed from the reverse of the caseback. The movement is protected by a shockproof system.
Each watch has featured on the case back the Gresso logo as well as the individual number of the limited edition watch engraved on the casing. The finished product is available in a limited edition of just 100 in the rose gold and a further 100 in white gold. The strap is made of crocodile leather with a DLC coated clasp. To find such exclusivity o your wrist you have to be willing and able to hand over $60,000. (www.gresso.com)