Luckily, it is not all teary-eyed past-reviving that’s happening at this anniversary — kudos to AP for that. Accordingly, together with the re-edition Royal Oak Offshore Selfwinding Chronograph, we see the Introduction of the brand new Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph, specifically Ref. 26421ST and 26421OR, which possess an entirely new design in two different case materials.Based on two before Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph watches, especially the Ref. 26388PO (watch our hands on with it here) and 26288OR, these fresh Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph watches come in stainless steel and 18k rose gold and feature a brand new case design which has a thinner bezel and a more spacious dial. Even so, the identifying Royal Oak Offshore design characteristics are all intact. The 45mm case remains angular, the bezel is still octagonal, and there is no missing those vulnerable hexagonal screws on the bezel. Water resistance is also 100m. On the dial, an individual can see the exposed movement and the tourbillon at 9 o’clock. Opposite the tourbillon in 3 o’clock is your 30-minute counter for the chronograph. Also clearly visible are both mainspring barrels. 26388PO & 26288OR. This particular movement comprises 338 parts, an incorporated chronograph movement that has a column wheel mechanism, a heartbeat rate of 3Hz, and a power reserve of a whopping 237 hours. Royal Oak Offshore fanatics are certainly eager to understand the prices, and we will update the article once we are able to confirm. Each Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Tourbillon Chronograph 25th Anniversary model is limited to 50 pieces.
Two year ago Audemars Piguet announced plans for a new museum, shaped like a glass spiral rising out of the pastoral fields of Le Brassus and designed by the same Danish architect responsible for Google’s new headquarters. The watchmaker broke ground on the the new building at the start of October 2016, capping two years of planning and design.
Designed by Danish architects BIG, short for Bjarke Ingels Group, the museum will be some 2800 square meters, or well over 30,000 square feet. Named Maison des Fondateurs, or “Home of the Founders”, the museum will have panoramic walls of curved glass along its entire length, topped by a roof garden.
The Audemars Piguet museum is just one of the high profile projects BIG is working on. Others include Two World Trade Center in New York City, Google’s sci-fi campus in Mountain View, and Lego House in Denmark.
But the museum will not be the only addition to the Audemars Piguet compound. Closed since early 2016, the quaint Hotel des Horlogers will be razed and replaced with a similarly stylish glass building designed by BIG with sloping buildings and long glass facades.
Owned by Audemars Piguet and separated from its factory by a carpark, the four star Hotel des Horlogers – or “watchmaker’s hotel” – will grow from 27 rooms to 65 and become a luxury hotel worthy of the visitors who make the pilgrimage to see expensive watches being produced.
Both the museum and hotel are slated to open in 2019.