Bulgari has been seriously raising the profile of its Octo Roma collection this year, perhaps as a way to balance the minimalist aesthetic of the ultra-thin Octo Finissimo by juxtaposing it with a more extroverted collection.
It started in January with the launch of the Octo Roma Carillon Minute Repeater Tourbillon at LVMH Watch Week, followed by an Octo Roma WorldTimer and a Central Tourbillon Papillon with jump hour at Geneva Watch Days in the spring. Concurrently, the brand has been upping its game in ladies’ watches by mixing high complications with full gem setting, as in the Divina Mosaica Minute Repeater, set with 11.6 carats of diamonds. Bulgari has now applied the formula to the Octo Roma Tourbillon Lumiere—the lumiere in the name is French for light, and in this case, it’s a reflection of the glare of 12.5 carats of diamonds.
The Tourbillon Lumiere has the same signature circle-on-octagon case as other Octo Roma models, but it has been newly scaled to a 38.5mm diameter (previous models are 41mm), just the right size for a woman’s wrist. The movement is the hand-wound tourbillon caliber BVL 208, which has been completely skeletonized—you can see it from back to front. The white gold elements forming the structure of the movement have all been carved out in order to remove as much metal as possible. This is a delicate process, as the components must retain their stability and load-bearing capacity even though most of the metal is carved away.
Diamonds are applied not only to the case side but to the bezel, lugs and hour ring. In all, it is set with 239 mostly baguette-cut diamonds for a total of 12.5 carats. The white gold dial ring, which floats on top of the remaining bridges, is set with alternating round diamonds and 9 blue sapphires, which serve as hour markers—there is no 5, 6 or 7, because the hour ring does not extend that far, otherwise it would obscure the tourbillon escapement.
Attached to the diamond-set lugs is a blue alligator strap with a white gold folding clasp, which is also set with baguette-cut diamonds. The power reserve is 64 hours. It is limited to 30 pieces, priced at $317,000.