Tiffany & Co. and Richard Mille Debut Unique Pendant Watches for Only Watch 2023

Horological jewellery in different styles.

The upcoming instalment of Only Watch sees both Tiffany & Co. and Richard Mille unveiling one-of-a-kind pendant watches for the charity auction. Despite having having the same basic form, both watches are drastically different.

The American jeweller reimagines its trademark Bird on a Rock brooch, transforming it into a watch that features a front-facing bird perched on an aquamarine crystal set on an 18k yellow gold watch case, showcasing the artful fusion of jewellery artistry and functional timekeeping.

Richard Mille’s offering, on the other hand, is the RM S14 Talisman Origine that combines ancient shamanic motifs with the brand’s avant-garde, open-worked mechanics. And like many Richard Mille watches, the movement boasts a tourbillon.

Initial thoughts

By opting for a pendant watch, Tiffany & Co. and Richard Mille demonstrate their creativity and willingness to explore fresh avenues.

Of the two timepieces, the offering from Tiffany is arguably more compelling because it is more sculptural. In fact, it is not apparent that the Bird on a Rock is a watch at all from a distance. And the “Bird” is not mere jewellery, it is a proper mechanic watch with a manually wound calibre, albeit a basic one.

Richard Mille, usually a watchmaker through and through, shows its remarkable ability to transcend expectations by transforming its distinctive, tonneau watch case into jewellery that doubles as a work of art. Despite its unusual form, Talisman is still typical Richard Mille with its extravagant, streetwear-appropriate style.

Notably, the Richard Mille has an automatic movement, perhaps an odd choice for a pendant watch since a necklace probably doesn’t move enough to wind a movement sufficiently.

The Bird on a Rock carries an estimate of CHF350,000 to CHF500,000, while the Talisman Origine is CHF 600,000-800,000, reflecting the typically incredible retail prices of Richard Mille.

The estimates are reasonable as such things go – both are high jewellery timepieces – and both are likely to be amongst the valuable lots in the sale. Even though Tiffany & Co. is making its debut at Only Watch, the strength of the jeweller’s brand name will probably propel it past the million-franc mark.

Bejewelled pendants

Both of these creations for Only Watch are pieces of jewellery meant to be worn around the neck that happen to contain watches. They feature mechanical movements within cases meticulously adorned with semi-precious stones.

According to Richard Mille, the Talisman Origine was inspired by a pendant several millennia old that was discovered in Switzerland’s Jura Mountains and predates modern society. The modern-day pendant watch is a necklace meant to be reminiscent of that ancient amulet that was perhaps employed to summon spirits.

To bring this concept to life, Richard Mille started with the RM74-02 as the base. The watch features the same skeletonised tourbillon, but the titanium case has been replaced by a red gold pendant that’s been meticulously satin-brushed, inlaid with Swiss rhodonite crystals, and carefully engraved with symbolic motifs. According to the sketch that Richard Mille released – no image of the watch is available yet – the Talisman Origine will be attached to a necklace featuring grapevine wood, marble, and rhodonite threaded onto a metal and rubber cord.

The Talisman Origine is equipped with the in-house automatic CRMT5 movement also found in the RM74-02. The movement features bridge plates and bridges made from 18N and 15N red gold and has a power reserve of up to 50 hours. Additionally, it incorporates a variable-geometry rotor that adjusts the efficiency of the automatic winding mechanism according to the wearer’s activities in order to optimise winding.

Meanwhile, Tiffany’s distinctive creation draws inspiration from one of its best known pieces of jewellery, the “Bird on a Rock” brooch designed by Jean Schlumberger, the Frenchman who was a longtime designer for the jeweller. Introduced in 1965, the original was made up of a gem-encrusted bird gracefully perched atop a crystal. That has been reinterpreted for Only Watch with a mechanical movement inserted into the “rock”.

The bird is made of platinum and set with diamonds, with eyes of pink sapphires, perched on a shimmering aquamarine crystal. Under the crystal is a watch dial “snow” set with 461 diamonds totalling over a single carat. Within the 18k yellow gold case is the compact, hand-wind LTM2000 made by movement specialist Le Temps Manufacture. 

Key facts and price

Tiffany & Co. Bird on a Rock Mechanical Pendant Watch Only Watch 2023

Diameter: 27 by 27 mm
Height: 11.6 mm
Material: 18K yellow gold case with a faceted aquamarine crystal and adorned with a platinum and 18K diamond-set bird
Crystal: Polished aquamarine crystal
Water resistance: Not available

Movement: LTM2000
Functions: Hours and minutes
Winding: Manual
Frequency: 25,200 beats per hours (3.5 Hz)
Power reserve: 38 hours

Strap: 18K yellow gold chain with diamond accents 

Limited edition: Piece unique
Availability: To be sold at Only Watch on November 5, 2023
Estimate: CHF350,000-CHF500,000

Richard Mille RM S14 Talisman Origine

Diameter: 46.77 by 77.25 mm
Height: 13.10 mm
Material: Titanium with rhodonite crystals
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: Not available

Movement: CRMT5
Functions: Hours, minutes and tourbillon
Winding: Automatic
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hours (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 50 hours

Strap: Necklace with parts made from grapevine wood, marble, and rhodonite

Limited edition: Piece unique
Availability: To be sold at Only Watch on November 5, 2023
Estimate: CHF600,000-CHF800,000

For more information, visit


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Gérald Genta Debuts a Mickey Mouse Repeater for Only Watch 2023

A dual celebration for the revived brand.

The Gérald Genta brand, which has recently been revived by La Fabrique du Temps (LFT), the watchmaking manufacture of Louis Vuitton, makes its debut with a unique creation for Only Watch 2023. The Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023 retains the brand’s signature octagonal case, a shape historically known as the “Success”, while showcasing the whimsical side of the brand with a champlevé enamel dial featuring Mickey Mouse carrying a birthday cake. And like many past Gérald Genta watches, it tells the time with a retrograde minutes and jumping hours – along with a minute repeater.

Initial thoughts

The long awaited comeback of Gérald Genta, a given after its sister brand Daniel Roth was resurrected, raised expectations given the brand’s elaborate complications of the 1990s as well as the current technical prowess of LFT. Unsurprisingly, the brand has combined two of the best known themes from its short history, the Fantasy line of Disney-licensed watches and striking complications.

The watch is essentially a homage to Gérald Genta’s best hits of the 1990s. The Mickey House dial is a nod to the Fantasy watches, most of which had retrograde displays. And the octagonal case is modelled on the Success, a bestseller for the brand at the time.

That said, the new case design has the addition of lugs that feel slightly out of place. The original Success designs either did without lugs entirely or had simple horizontal bar lugs, both of which arguably work better with the octagonal shape.

Inside is a a complicated movement that combines a retrograde minutes, jumping hours, and minute repeater. But the GG-001 movement inside is an LFT calibre, rather than one of the original Gerald Genta movements that are still used by Bulgari (which owned the brand until it was transferred to Louis Vuitton). Installing one of the Gérald Genta calibres inside this would have arguably made it more complete.

Estimated at CHF350,000-500,000, the Gérald Genta repeater is amongst the most valuable lots in the sale. Although that might seem like a big number for a new(ish) brand’s inaugural outing at Only Watch, the Genta name still has cachet and Mickey Mouse is an even bigger draw. Gérald Genta watches with Disney characters on the secondary market sell for multiples of the equivalent models without any cartoon decor. And then there’s the fact that Gérald Genta is now owned by the biggest luxury goods brand in the world, which will be yet another boost.

A celebration

The dial is champlevé enamel and portrays a smiling Mickey Mouse holding a birthday cake, a motif that commemorates two events: the centennial of the Walt Disney Company and the 50th anniversary of Gérald Genta’s first-ever watch. As is tradition for Gérald Genta, one of Mickey’s arms is the retrograde minute hand, which hours are indicated in a window at three. 

The octagonal case is 18k white gold and measures 40 mm with a height of 10.96 mm, making it substantially larger than the 1990s originals that were most 36 mm or so, but still elegantly thin. The case retains the stepped bezel that characterise some of the original Success cases, but adds stepped lugs that echo the bezel design.

Positioned at the three o’clock position is the crown for time-setting that’s topped with a red ruby cabochon. And at at the nine o’clock position is the pusher that activates the minute repeater.

Powering the watch is the manually-wound GG-001 designed by LFT’s chief watchmakers, Michel Navas and Enrico Barbasini, both of whom worked at Gérald Genta during its 1990s heyday.

The architecture of the movement draws on the familiar LFT calibre that’s been used by a range of brands from Louis Vuitton to Laurent Ferrier. Here it’s been modified to incorporate the jump hour and retrograde minutes on top of the minute repeater.

Revamping the movement to add the jump hours and retrograde display is more complex than it sounds. This is particularly in relation to preventing damage to the mechanism if the time is inadvertently adjusted while the repeater is chiming. The retrograde minute hand is also dampened so its returns to zero in a gradual manner at the top of every hour.

A drawing of the GG-001

Key facts and price

Gérald Genta Only Watch 2023
Ref. GG0011WG-01

Diameter: 40 mm
Height: 10.96 mm
Material: White gold
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 50 m

Movement: GG-001
Functions: Two-hammer minute repeater, jumping hours and retrograde minutes
Winding: Manual
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hours (3 Hz)
Power reserve: 80 hours

Strap: Rubber strap with pin buckle

Limited edition: Piece unique
Availability: To be sold at Only Watch on November 5, 2023
Estimte: CHF350,000 – CHF500,000

For more information, visit


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