Since its revival in 2010, Swiss independent company Manufacture Royale has become synonymous with its unique and very beautiful take on Haute Horlogerie and elaborate non-conformist designs. Very much in the spirit of flamboyant French philosopher, socialite and entrepreneur Voltaire, who in 1770 established the company name, its watches are hand created masterpieces which exude individuality, exclusivity and creativity.

Even by these standards, the Manufacture Royale Androgyne Full Blue Steel is a rather spectacular wristwatch indeed. A gleaming flash of highly polished electric blue, with its complex construction and fully exposed mechanism uniform in this brilliant finish, this is an irresistible eye magnet of immense presence and overt personality.

Each Androgyne is manufactured individually by hand and is a one-off, bespoke piece. The round case is cradled between a pair of tubular limbs, which are screwed onto its side, with articulated lugs which creates a snug fit for all but the slimmest of wrists. Distinctly porthole-like in appearance, the bezel features twelve countersunk screws, spaced to double up as hour indices.

Beneath the flat sapphire crystal, the movement is configured around a three-quarter plate, which is brush-finished in matching blue PVD and pared back to reveal the winding mechanism, gear wheels and skeletonised barrel. Broad steel hands indicate the hours and minutes, and below in the lower part of the dial, the constant rotation of the tourbillon appears to be suspended in mid-air, mysterious and captivating in its graceful motion.

Behind the extroverted aesthetics, the manufacture MR02 hand-winding movement is classical watchmaking with a contemporary twist. Beautifully executed by hand, it is fully revealed thanks to the sapphire caseback, which allows a three-dimension view of the pristine finishing throughout. Beating at 21’600vph it has an impressive power reserve of at least 108 hours when fully wound.

A spectacular and unusual piece of independent Haute Horlogerie, the Manufacture Royale Androgyne Full Blue Steel Tourbillon is a watch that commands attention, and of course is presented on a bright blue alligator leather strap with pin buckle


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