If someone had said to me, in 2008, “Hey, I’ll bet you a steel Patek 5711 that by 2021, Bulgari will have broken just about every record you can break in ultra-thin watchmaking,” I would have gleefully taken them up on it. And how wrong I would have been. The first Octo Finissimo watch was introduced six years after the financial crisis – in 2014 – and it’s a source of never-ending fascination to me that they feel as if they have been around for quite a lot longer than that.
Just from a design standpoint, they’ve become as iconic for Bulgari as the Nautilus is for Patek or the Royal Oak for AP, and repeating the list of records broken makes you sound like a broken record: Tourbillon, perpetual calendar, chronograph, minute repeater, you name it. The fact that Bulgari doesn’t have a slew of 20th century vintage models to which it must bow, doesn’t hurt, but the fact that it has single-handedly created both a cornucopia of technical triumphs and a design that redefined the modern watch landscape, is a pretty strong rebuttal to the idea that the entire industry is stuck in a rut.