The world of luxury watches can be daunting and sometimes misleading due to bad press and egomaniac personalities throwing big announcements like the then, very famous Jacques Séguéla's one, declaring that "if at 50, you don't own a Rolex, you're a basically a looser" (he admitted later that it was one of his most stupid public declaration).
But when looking closely, as for every luxury products, watches are fascinating by the extremely high level of craftsmanship and technology involved in their making. Abraham-Louis Breguet, a native from Switzerland (he was born in Neuchâtel in 1747) was sent to Versailles at 15 to become an apprentice and soon became a major horologist and inventor, establishing the Breguet watchmaking company in 1775, quai de l'Horloge in the Ile de la Cité, in Paris. Since the French revolution, the company has experienced a continuum of ground breaking inventions, the latest being in 2010 the Magnetic Pivot along with various owners and a world wide expansion, Asia being its latest major markets. In 1999, Breguet joins the Swatch Group and today thanks to the later legendary Nicolas G. Hayek and the actual CEO, Hayek's grandson, Marc A. Hayek, the house mixes a deep respect for exceptional heritage with very precise business acumen, positioning the Breguet watches at the top in the ranking of luxury products.
Breguet. Watchmaking excellence since 1775.
I came across the Breguet watches while doing research at Versailles while putting together a show called "A night in Versailles". Long story short, even if the show took place in North America, I wanted while on a trip in Paris get more familiar with Versailles. As I was wandering in the Versailles huge park, my eyes caught a very fine little castle in one of the aisles of the garden: The petit Trianon – Read more in the Travel section.