Hublot Big Bang Unico Berluti Cold Brown, a limited-edition chronograph, is the latest masterpiece to emerge from the collaboration between two renowned LVHM brands. While the previous collaborations between the two brands were based on Hublot’s Classic Fusion watch, the latest collaboration is based, for the first time, on the Big Bang Unico chronograph.
Hublot, the Swiss watch manufacture renowned for its “art of fusion” concept, has presented numerous innovative materials to the industry – the combination of gold and rubber, scratch-resistant Magic Gold, ceramics in vibrant colours, and sapphire to name a few. The multi-award-winning Big Bang made its debut in 2005 and has been the champion of the brand ever since. In 2015, to mark its 10th anniversary, Hublot unveiled three new models. One of which was the Big Bang Unico featuring the propriety Unico movement.
Berluti, established in Paris in 1895, has been built by four generations of shoemakers. In 2005, fine leather goods were introduced and, in 2011, a complete clothing collection. Known for their exceptional Venezia leather and its patina, Berluti’s workshops, particularly in rue Marbeuf and rue de Sèvres, offer a unique bespoke service from head to toe.
“It has already been four years since we began our partnership with the Berluti House,” says Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot. “For the first time, we have chosen the Big Bang Unico model as the basis of our collaboration. The final result combines an exercise in style, due to Kris Van Assche’s flair for fashion, with an amazing technical feat made possible by the expertise of our watchmakers, designers and engineers.”
Hublot’s engineers drew on the experience gained during previous collaborations with Berluti to apply the house’s iconic Venezia leather to the Big Bang Unico’s dial. A construction built around a brass base encapsulates the leather between two pieces of sapphire glass. The leather has been cut out for the first time to allow the wearer to admire the gears of the Unico movement. Through a delicate process, developed in collaboration with Berluti, the organic elements of the leather have been frozen, as if asleep, so as to render the living beauty of the natural hide unchanging.
The Venezia leather used on the new watch debuts the Cold Brown patina. For inspiration, Kris Van Assche, Berluti’s Creative Director, dove into the maison’s archive and brought it back up to date to create the Cold Brown patina. A glacé finish on it emphasizes the various brown shades that comprise this subtle colour. This patina is the result of long and complex handwork. Each piece is unique thanks to the colour variations as a result of this craftsmanship.
“The patina is our trademark, usually present in our shoes and leather goods, but all that know-how can also be used for something totally different. Bringing the Cold Brown patina – which was inspired by an archive patina and renewed through a glaçage process to obtain a rich, cutting edge colour – to the Big Bang Unico is an opportunity for Berluti’s craft to be discovered in a new context. Using our tradition and heritage in innovative, forward-thinking ways has opened up a world of possibilities,” says Van Assche.
In the previous editions, the patina featured only on the strap and the dial. For the first time, the Venezia leather patina also features on the watch’s bezel. This was made possible thanks to the development of an all-new conception of the piece, in two parts. The first part, in leather and around 1 mm thick, is inserted using an adhesive and rigidifying resin onto a lower base in black ceramic. This is then screwed onto the case of the watch. Like the strap, it will be able to continue taking on a patina over time.
At the heart of this exclusive Big Bang can only be the iconic Unico manufacture movement, a chronograph with flyback function. The MHUB1242 calibre beats at the heart of a case with a 45-millimetre diameter and offers a 72-hour power reserve.
The Hublot Big Bang Unico Berluti Cold Brown watch is delivered in a casket signed by the two houses, along with the emblematic Berluti shoehorn key ring and travel case. This model will only be available in a limited edition of 100 copies.