Much of the credit for sparking the current sapphire case trend in watchmaking belongs to Richard Mille, which introduced its first entirely sapphire-encased watch, the RM 056, at SIHH in 2012. At the time, the watch was just as shocking for its $1.7 million price tag as it was for its unconventional case material. And while the brand has released a number of subsequent all-sapphire watches, their prices have remained at a premium.
The most recent version for men, the RM 056 Tourbillon Chronograph Sapphire Felipe Massa (reportedly priced between $1.7 and $2 million) was released to celebrate Richard Mille’s decade-long partnership with Brazilian Formula One driver Felipe Massa. Perfect for a day on the track, the watch is equipped with a split-seconds chronograph and a tachymeter on the bezel.
Not to exclude women from the fun, the RM 07-02 “Pink Lady” Automatic Pink Sapphire ($980,000) takes its nickname from the iconic Pink Lady cocktail popular in the 1930s. Design elements include hand-decorated gold bridges, a central dial set in onyx and diamonds, skeletonized plates set with gold and diamonds, and a white alligator-skin strap. (richardmille.com)