Just when you thought Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Selfwinding black ceramic model couldn’t get any hotter, the Swiss company wows with a limited edition version with longtime collaborator, Carolina Bucci, in an ultra-cool multi-colored rainbow twist on the tapisserie dial.
It marks the third Royal Oak with the Italian jeweler. Previous models that received the Bucci treatment included a version with a frosted case and bracelet in white gold or rose gold (which included a 37 mm and 41 mm sizes and a 33 mm quartz model) in 2016 and a frosted yellow-gold version with a mirrored dial in 2017. The technique requires creating a multitude of tiny indentations in the gold with a diamond-tipped tool to give the surface its sparkling shimmer. Needless to say, the collaboration was a fruitful one with all models instantly becoming hits.
Now the brand’s highly coveted 34 mm Royal Oak Selfwinding watch in black ceramic is receiving its own dose of “Bucci-fication.” Depending on the light the dial can look black, but the movement of the wrist reveals a multi-colored rainbow design created through micro-structuring the top of the brass plate of the dial and a golden metallic treatment applied on the back of the sapphire plate to create a mirror-like effect. The result is a seriously hip timepiece that will surely be hyped to oblivion, all the while proving, once again, that a simple change in color on a dial can send a watch into the stratosphere.
The all-black version, updated in January, retails for $48,900 but has already more than doubled in value on the secondary market with prices reaching up to $110,000. We expect the $54,200 Carolina Bucci edition, which is limited to 300, to follow the same trajectory, if not surpass it. Adding to its appeal is the fact that the pattern of iridescent colors varies from piece to piece.
Unlike the frosted Audemars Piguet x Carolina Bucci Royal Oaks, which give off an appearance of being dusted in diamonds, the black ceramic rainbow dial version is likely to have a more universal appeal to all genders, thereby making it even harder to come by. That being said, if you aren’t already on the phone with Audemars Piguet, consider yourself woefully behind.