It began in Geneva in 1791
But although the name Girard Perregaux is inextricably linked with La Chaux-de-Fonds, the company's history began in Geneva. It was there that Jean-François Bautte founded a watchmaker's workshop in 1791, which soon became not only an internationally renowned manufacturer of luxury watches, but also one of the city's most interesting tourist attractions. With 300 employees and branches in Paris and Florence, it was a truly great company for its time. However, the name Girard Perregaux has only been used for these manufactories since they and their tradition were taken over by this company in 1906.
Constant Girard and Marie Perregaux
The name Girard Perregaux has its origins, just like the watches that still carry it today, in the watchmaking metropolis of La Chaux-de-Fonds. It was here that watchmaker Constant Othenin-Girard founded a watchmaker's workshop in 1850 to produce high-precision luxury watches. In 1854 he married Marie Perregaux, whose brother Henri was also one of the best watchmakers in the city, and renamed his company Girard Perregaux in her honour in 1856. Over the next few years, Girard Perregaux repeatedly attracted attention for his first-class development work by winning chronometer competitions.
Precision and aesthetics
From the very beginning, the combination of precision and aesthetics has been Girard Perregaux's greatest strength. His tourbillon with three golden bridges was both a technical triumph and an incomparably elegant design element, which rightly earned him a gold medal at the 1886 World Fair in Paris. It can still be found today in the beautiful watches of the Toubillon series by Girard Perregaux. Nevertheless, the company's relentless quest for precision has continued. In 1966, for example, the Girard Perregaux Series celebrated another historic moment in the evolution of the art of watchmaking. Thanks to its new high-precision movement with a frequency of 36,000 vibrations per hour, the company launched in 1966 a collection of pocket watches with previously unattained precision in timekeeping.
Highest watchmaking art today as then
But not only the Girard Perregaux anniversary models are among the most precious luxury watches in the world. The company has remained faithful to its objectives to this day and is still working to improve its movements and their skilful combination with elegant designs. Every Girard Perregaux watch is a marvel of quality and beauty beyond comparison. It is no wonder that many famous people, from Pierce Brosnan and Quentin Tarantino to Nicholas Sarkozy, but also Queen Victoria, have chosen Girard Perregaux watches.