In October, Breguet celebrated the 10th anniversary of their boutique in Ginza—the most prestigious shopping district in Tokyo—by creating a special, limited-edition version of the company’s Classique 5175 watch.
Regional and boutique-only timepieces are, of course, not unusual. They are a big turn on for local buyers as well as those completists who need limited editions to feed their collections. But what makes the Breguet Classique 5175 “Ginza Anniversary” special edition worth the flight to Tokyo is the way the brand broke from its own traditions while staying true to its high standards of craftsmanship.
First, there’s the dial. Usually the Classique comes in either a white enamel or gold engine-turned dial. To honor Japanese cultural preferences, the House of Breguet instead opted for a deep blue “Grand Feu” enamel dial. The face literally glows! And unlike other versions of this model, there is no date display—it is purely a time-only piece.
At the same time, the "Ginza Anniversary" features the most beloved signatures of the House of Breguet, some of which have been around since the company was founded in 1775. This includes italicized numerals made from powdered platinum and rhodium-plated, open-tipped Breguet hands. The minute track is comprised of stars and symbols, a detail taken from vintage Breguet pocket watches. And, of course, there is a secret signature faintly engraved on the dial at six o’clock.
Another way in which the Breguet Classique 5175 “Ginza Anniversary” breaks with tradition is the finely fluted 38-mm white gold case. While it is on the smaller side for a gents’ watch, the bold blue face, the added texture on the classic Classique case, and the luxurious blue alligator leather strap all add plenty of wrist presence.
And while this time-only timepiece is the essence of subtle sophistication, those who like a little more razzmatazz can find it in the hand-engraved, numbered (Ginza N°1” to “Ginza N°10) case back and movement, which can be viewed through a sapphire crystal.
Of the Moment
As much as it is steeped in both Swiss and Japanese traditions, the Breguet Classique 5175 "Ginza Anniversary" is definitely en route to becoming a future classic.
Its more than pretty, though; it's practical, too. Welded lugs make the case remarkably robust. And inside, it houses Breguet’s caliber 777 self-winding movement. This mechanism includes high-tech Swiss straight-line lever escapement and balance-spring in silicon (more silicon means less friction which means a more accurate and long-lasting timekeeper).
Here are some other nice features of the caliber 777: Even though it is an automatic, it also has a 55-hour power reserve (in case you don’t want to carry a watch winder with you on travels) and it's water-resistant to 30 meters (in case you get caught in the rain).
The Breguet Classique 5175 "Ginza Anniversary" is limited to ten pieces only and is priced at approximately $27,800. It is available exclusively at the Ginza Boutique. breguet.com