Following a year and a half of research and development, Gerald Charles introduces the Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon,
Ref. GC9.0-A-01, a technical and aesthetic tribute to an original design by the Maison’s founder,
Mr. Gérald Charles Genta.
Maison Gerald Charles is proud to introduce the Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon, Ref. GC9.0-A-01, one of the most technically and aesthetically advanced pieces ever conceived by the family-owned Maison. The timepiece returns to the story of an original Maestro flying tourbillon created in 2005 by Gerald Charles’s founder, the great Monsieur Gérald Charles Genta.
The new model was designed in collaboration with the Maison’s creative director Octavio Garcia, and is powered by the GCA 3024/12 automatic flying tourbillon calibre, a bespoke manufacture movement produced by Gerald Charles’s long-time partner Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, the Swiss specialist high-end movement creator.
The case: a natural shape for a tourbillon
The watch’s form follows that of the now familiar Maestro, immediately recognisable by its playful asymmetrical case with its rippled bezel and “smile” at 6 o’clock. This time, the case is cast in 42mm of medical-grade stainless steel and has a royal blue sunburst dial, a signature Gerald Charles colour.
“The smile is such an inviting space to explore and creates a natural playground for a tourbillon,” said Octavio Garcia. “But it also contributes to a paradox: the Maestro’s form and volume make sense to the human eye. And yet when you come to hand-draw it, you realise it has one of the most complex case shapes in watchmaking. There are no straight lines. Even the indexes pose a challenge because they have to follow the case silhouette and underscore the Maestro design. The challenge as a designer is to finda balance between character and usability.”
In keeping with the Gerald Charles watch creation philosophy, the Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon is both highly technical and designed to be wearable in everyday situations. This is a watch that conforms to the values of Swiss haute horlogerie and Fleurier Quality standards.
The flying tourbillon: a technical and artistic tour de force
At the watch’s heart is its 60-seconds flying tourbillon, a traditional fine watchmaking device perfected in the early 19th century to offset the effects of gravity on the accuracy of a pocket watch. For the Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon, Octavio Garcia worked with Gerald Charles’ technical teams and Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier to engineer a unique tourbillon cage in the shape of the Maison’s GC logo. This posed a technical challenge: how to deliver a tourbillon cage in the shape of the swooping GC logo without placing too much pressure on the watch’s power reserve.
The solution was to machine the cage from lightweight Grade 5 titanium. But even then, this presented a fresh technical challenge of its own. Titanium is notoriously difficult to manipulate when the tolerances are so fine. Nevertheless, in pursuit of Monsieur Genta’s vision of artistic creativity and technical mastery, the Maison’s creative and technical teams persisted, determining that the lightness, warm grey tones and resistance of titanium would deliver aesthetic and performance benefits that more than merited the time and energy required to take on the challenge.
Working with Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier, Octavio Garcia and Gerald Charles’s engineers achieved their goal by skeletonising the flying tourbillon cage and repositioning the screws that hold its striking 18-karat yellow gold bridge to the back side. The result is a highly sophisticated 60-seconds flying tourbillon that oscillates at 4hz, made all the more vivid by the natural, three-dimensional contrasts created by combining a surgical-grade stainless steel case, a gold tourbillon bridge and a titanium flying tourbillon cage. It also features a blue indicator applied to the “G” of the cage that serves as a small seconds indicator. A stop-seconds function delivers precise time setting.
“The tourbillon was always going to be the focal point of this watch, and so from the outset we applied ourselves to the design of the tourbillon cage. How could we create something that captured the mature narrative of Gerald Charles, the spirit of the Maison’s founder and the design language of a contemporary technical sports watch? It was a long process and we worked through countless iterations before we settled on a design based on the GC logo. The result is intensely graphic, as much sculpture as a mechanical watch.”
Octavio Garcia, Gerald Charles Creative Director
The movement: finished to perfection
The Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon has a sapphire crystal case back revealing the intricate design and finishing of the GCA 3024/12 automatic flying tourbillon calibre. This exclusive movement features bespoke bridge designs decorated with a special vertical Côtes de Genève pattern developed by Octavio Garcia, inspired by tailoring, thanks to Mr. Genta’s Italian heritage. The plates and bridges all feature delicate aesthetic refinements, including diamond-polished anglage that gently reflects the light, building the watch’s sense of mechanical theatre. Also visible through the case back is the movement’s 22-karat rose gold oscillating mass, which charges the watch’s mainspring as it spins during wear. This is decorated with the striking honeycomb motif inspired by an ancient Roman monument and originally conceived for Gerald Charles by Octavio Garcia for the Maestro 8.0 Squelette, introduced in 2022.
The performance: no compromise
To preserve the sporty elegant feel the Maestro collection is known for, the Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon is automatic and has a 50-hour power reserve, an uncommonly high figure in a 60-seconds flying tourbillon made possible by the movement’s twin-barrel system.
The watch also has a screw-down crown, ensuring water resistance to 100 metres, a stunning achievement in a highly technical mechanical watch that remains incredibly slim, measuring just 9mm thick. These properties are all core design requirements of the Gerald Charles contemporary watchmaking philosophy.
“Combining this level of finishing with this level of performance was a huge technical challenge. But the Maison’s ambitions were met by Gerald Charles’s engineers and Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier. We are absolutely delighted with the result. Even the components you can’t see are finished to the same impeccable standards of Swiss fine watchmaking and according to the Gerald Charles standards: without compromise.”
Federico Ziviani, Gerald Charles General Manager
Production will be limited to 50 pieces in steel with a steel bezel.
There will also be 10 pieces a year in 18-karat white gold with a diamond-set bezel, and a further 10 white-gold pieces with bezels set with sapphires, decorated by the master gem setters of Salanitro Geneva.
Maestro 9.0 Tourbillon
Movement: GCA 3024/12, automatic flying tourbillon, 50-hour power reserve, 28,800vph, Incabloc, anti-shock stop-second
system, 196 components, 33 rubies, 4.87mm thickness
Cage: 60-seconds Titanium flying tourbillon cage. Blue indicator applied as small seconds indicator
Bridge: 18-karat yellow gold bridge
Mass: 22-karat rose gold oscillating mass with honeycomb motif
Case: 39mm x 42mm x 9mm
Case material: Medical-grade stainless steel
Screw-down crown: Medical-grade stainless steel with Clous de Paris finish and embossed logo
Dial: Sunburst royal blue; flying tourbillon with 60-seconds indication at 6 o’clock, hands and indexes filled with Super-LumiNova®
Crystal: Anti-reflective sapphire
Case back: Medical-grade stainless steel with sapphire crystal aperture
Strap: Royal blue vulcanised rubber
Water resistance: 10 ATM/100 m
Warranty: Five years (following ‘Smart Warranty’ system registration)
Gem-Set Limited Edition
Bezel: White Gold 18-karat with 66 diamonds
Gem set: VVS, 2.52 ct. baguette cutting
Bezel: White Gold 18-karat with 66 blue sapphires
Gem set: 2.78 ct. baguette cutting