This is the Tour de L'Ile. It is a unique piece created for the 250th anniversary of VC. I believe it has 834 parts. I do not know whether there is a reference number for it.
As far as I know there has only been one piece completed. It is double-sided. You can see the other side behind the one you are refering to. It has the planisphere.
The watch was sold at the Antiquorum auction celebrating the quarter-millenium of VC
Alex can probably tell you more.
Tour de l'Ile and created in celebration of the brand's 250th anniversary.
Vacheron states that it took over 10,000 hours of research and development to create. The Tour de l'Ile is a double sided watch with 16 complications and limited to only 7 pieces.
On the front side you have:
- Hours, minutes, seconds
- Minute repeater via the bezzel
- Power reserve
- Second time zone
- Torque of striking mechanism
- perpetual calendar
- equation of time
- time of sunset the equation of time, time of sunset and sunrise are calibrated to the owners place of choice
- time of sunrise
- sky chart of the Northern or Southern hemisphere (to the owner's specifications)
The guillochage on the back dial shall be different for each watch.
number 1 of the Tour de l'Ile (which had a black dial) was auctioned by Antiquorum in 2005 at the Quarter Millenium auction and sold for a whopping CHF 1,876,250 (not including VAT!!) making it the world's most expensive modern wrist watch at auction.
N° 1 auctioned by Antiquorum (scan courtesy of Antiquorum)
"Regular production" model (scan courtesy of Alberto Schileo)
The world's most complicated wrist watch is (or will be practically soon) Franck Muller Aeternitas 4 Mega. Aeternitas 4 Mega has 20 complications, for example: carillon, tourbillon, moon phase, perpetual calendar, time zones, equation of time, power reserve for different functions etc.
watch thing kind of leaves me cold.
For me its not so much how many complications you can stack up but rather if it can be done in a aesthetically pleasing manner. Unfortunately in today's industry we see a race for the most complicated watch, the watch with the most hands, the watch that can give time and make cappuccino etc etc...
At one point you end up with so much going on the dial that you can't even tell time anymore!
Like the world's biggest pizza race some of these watches just knock you out cold with horological indigestion
indeed very complicated but in my opinion also very horrible
I am very much releaved it is not a Vacherron
I mean it's beautiful, extremely beautiful AND complicated.
That's the most fantastic.
The other "watch" is, as Alex points out, impossible to grip,
and further, I wouldn't say it's beautiful, no not even challenging.
Tour de l'Ile is to me the most complicated watch,
and it's made by the worlds outstanding oldest watchmaker,
who has been doing watches for 252 years, continously.
No other brand are in the neighbourhood of that. Period.