Not many distinguished watches can have a claim to fame but Girard-Perregaux's Laureato is a horological piece originated from the silver screen. Bearing the Italian name of the 1967 film The Graduate starring movie stars Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft and Katharine Ross, the Laureato was the watch that arose from the heyday of Hollywood and defined a new era of unconventionality.
The first on the horology scene to use steel as a premium component in crafting luxury timepieces, the 1975 original also sported gold elements — a striking feature that was ahead of its time. Ever an advocate of fearless innovation, Girard-Perregaux is consistently revolutionising and refining the brilliantly engineered icon that is the Laureato.
A pivotal calibre
A mover and shaker that pioneered an in-house movement during the early days when quartz was being introduced to watchmaking — a new element that threatened the balance for other watchmakers — Girard-Perregaux initiated a technological breakthrough. The Laureato boasted a calibre with an oscillation rate of 32,768 Hz that became the industry benchmark for future quartz movement watches.
The 1984 upgrade
Buoyed by the radical wave it set off, the Laureato evolved its form less than a decade since its debut. Expanding upon its remarkability, Girard-Perregaux crafted softly rounded curves that increased its allure to a wider audience, as well as updating its movements to display astronomical indicators.
Into the millennium
Going bigger and bolder in the 21st century, the Laureato focused on large diametres with the Evo3 update, which measured a sizeable 44mm boasting a satin-brushed bezel. Powered by a self-winding movement, it featured a futuristic athletic visual with push buttons and a screwed winder that proved a phenomenal hit with the masses.
2016 sees this enduring signature of Girard-Perregaux return to its background in steel, making a simultaneously classic yet modern leap in its aesthetics. Exhibiting the famous hexagonal-shaped bezel of the original model, the new Laureato affects an understated sporty grace with both polished and satin-brushed finishes on a 41mm diametre frame. Its baton-shaped hands and the Clou de Paris checkerboard stamped dial pattern are inspired directly from the first Laureato, though an anti-reflective coating on the cover and a sapphire crystal back are tell-tale signs of its modernity.
Driven by the gP03300-0030, a manufacture 27-jewel mechanical movement that self-winds and an oscillating weight that boasts a frequency of 28,800 vibrations, Girard-Perregaux pours 225 years of watchmaking know-how into the contemporary Laureato. With a cutting-edge interior nestled in its vintage-inspired countenance, the Laureato 2016 does its Hollywood namesake proud as a true mark of an icon worthy of the hall of fame.
The Laureato 2016 is available at The Hour Glass.