Beauregard Watches: Watches And Wonders 2023
Last week at Watches and Wonders, I had the pleasure of meeting with Swiss-Canadian independent Beauregard. The brand – owned and operated by Alexandre Beauregard – creates unique luxury timepieces adorned with handcrafted petals. Yes – petals. Beauregard’s Dahlia and Lili collections resemble their floral namesakes with beautifully-finished petal-shaped gemstones. However, Beauregard doesn’t stop at gems; their flagship Dahlia is powered by a self-winding flying tourbillon movement with 72 hours of power reserve. This is the ultimate marriage of jewelry and haute horology. Beauregard’s catalog also includes the smaller quartz-powered Lili collection. In the coming years, they’ll introduce a men’s watch: a release that we have some exciting information about. I learned a lot during my time with Alexandre: where he draws inspiration, what goes into the creation of these pieces, and what the future holds for Beauregard.
The Beauregard Dahlia
Upon entering the booth, I was greeted not only by Alexandre, but the entire Beauregard family: all extremely welcoming and knowledgeable about the products. The first piece on display was the Dahlia. This 38.8mm timepiece proudly displays a central flying tourbillon surrounded by 48 invisible-set gemstone petals: no glue, no prongs, no nothing. These gemstones are held together by each other, secured under less than a millimeter of contact with the innermost ring. This invisible setting is made possible by the gemstones’ 0.01mm tolerances. Such accuracy is remarkable for hand-shaped and hand-polished stones.
Because the Dahlia is made exclusively on request, no two are the exact same. Each example uses different gemstones: black onyx, red coral, turquoise, phosphosiderite, etc. Translucent stones are set atop a thin layer of mother of pearl, bringing a stunning luminescent quality to the petals. On the dial surface unoccupied by petals, you’ll find 144 diamonds set on a white gold base. Zooming out to the case and lugs (also white gold), you’ll find another 330 diamonds covering the surface. The remaining 124 diamonds live on the strap’s tri-fold clasp, totalling nearly 600 VVS white diamonds making up 1.83 carats.
The Dahlia’s central flying tourbillon movement was developed with Télôs Watch SA: an independent movement company based out of La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. Every aspect of this movement – down to the color of the jewels – was intentionally designed for the Dahlia. Looking through the exhibition caseback, you’ll immediately notice the open-worked bridges that use negative space to create floral patterns. When you look a bit closer, you’ll notice that every jewel is clear as opposed to the traditional ruby red. The finishing on this movement is frankly remarkable. I can’t tell which side of the watch I like more.
The Beauregard Lili Collection
Beauregard’s Lili collection holds three watches: the rectangular Lili, the circular Lili Bouton, and the circular Lili Candy (pictured above, left to right). This collection demonstrates the same haute joaillerie petal work as the Dahlia, but opts for a quartz movement rather than a flying tourbillon. This makes for a smaller, thinner, and considerably more attainable offering from the brand. The Lili Candy is an outlier of the collection, boasting a colorful spiral of six unique gemstones (two of each) separated by white opal. Alexandre emphasized the difficulty of shaping and polishing this spiral, as each gemstone has a different hardness and crystalline makeup. The rejection rate of this dial has decreased from 80% to just 10% over time: a result of the brand’s mastery and experience with lapidary. The Lili and Lili Bouton are more reminiscent of the Dahlia, with one large gemstone occupying the space of the central tourbillon. These models were used as demonstrations for the petal setting pictured below.
Beauregard’s Upcoming Men’s Watch
First of all, I know plenty of men who would love to wear Beauregard’s current watches (myself included). The concept of men’s and women’s watches seems to be fading with time. Just look at Patek Philippe's new rose gold Aquanaut 5261R: a “ladies’” watch that every man seems to want. That said, there are traditional features associated with men’s and ladies’ watches. Size is a big one. Beauregard’s upcoming men’s watch is set to have a larger 41mm diameter. It will feature a central flying tourbillon, although we don’t know if it will share the Dahlia’s exact movement. In terms of the dial, Alexandre told me that the existing models are “child’s play” compared to what’s to come. I can’t even imagine what this will look like, but I’m on the edge of my seat.
It’s hard not to smile while looking at a Beauregard watch. Rarely do we see brands execute haute joaillerie and haute horology in one product. Experiencing it in person is honestly breathtaking. The team and I were taken aback not only by the watches, but the hospitality of the Beauregard family. Upon mentioning my mom’s favorite flower, Alexandre went out of his way to find his sketchbook and show me something similar that he drew up in the past. There was a palpable sense of excitement and curiosity in the Beauregard booth. Their watchmaking is clearly a process driven by passion. As explained by Alexandre, “our lives would be simpler without this”. Despite that fact, Beauregard continues on: challenging the binary of high jewelry and high watchmaking. Why not do both?
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