Bvlgari is an Italian luxury watch brand whose pillars were laid down in the year 1884 by a Greek immigrant, Sotirio Bulgari. Every Bvlgari watch beckons the rich Roman history. The Bvlgari watches perfectly combine the Italian design along with Swiss watchmaking expertise. Bvlgari has received a high acknowledgement worldwide owing to its high quality and exquisite luxury watch designs.
History of Bvlgari
“Bvlgari”, as soon as this word strikes you a sense of magnificence resonates throughout. Bulgari has been a jeweller since a very long time; however, it produced its first Bvlgari jewellery watch in 1918. But what made Bulgari what it is today and how was the idea of making Bvlgari watches conceived? Let’s go a little back in time, then:
Bulgari began its journey in the year 1884 in Italy when Sotirios Voulgaris (Sotirio Bulgari), hailing from a family of silversmiths, decided to open his first shop on Via Sistina in Rome which bore the sign “Old Curiosity Shop”. As the Bulgari business was flourishing, Sotirios along with his sons, Costantino and Giorgio, opened a second shop on Via Condotti. The rich and famous soon flooded the store to obtain the jewellery which was inspired by Greek and Roman art. However, the dedication they held for the brand's home city was nowhere to go and the Roman alphabets had stipulated that they would use V instead of a U – they decided to formulate a logo for the brand with the letters "BVLGARI" instead of Bulgari.
Soon after, Costantino and Giorgio became one of the most renowned professionals for this craftwork. Having understood the jewels completely, the two decided to enter the watchmaking segment in the 1920s and that is when they decided to produce watches in a large number in the Art Deco style which was in trend during that period of time. This gave birth to the "Bvlgari watches". The Bvlgari watches had a dominant geometric shape along with precious settings but little did they pay attention to the watch movements.
However, Bvlgari watches took a whole new turn when the iconic and chic Bvlgari Serpenti was introduced to the market. To enhance its watchmaking segment a whole new jewellery making technique was introduced to give Bvlgari Serpenti its identity and that was the Tubogas goldsmith technique. The bracelet further beautifies the Bvlgari watch because of its horizontally wrapped gold/steel around a flexible steel tube which has got diamonds brilliantly studded around it. The serpent is a motif adapted from the Greek and Roman mythology which is a symbol of the circle of life and wisdom.
Throughout the watch, the snake motif with the Tubogas bracelet has been made using different materials, colours and designs. The designs ranged from geometrical to abstract or were of a more realistic form. The most conspicuous thing about the Bvlgari Serprenti watch is that it arrested the observer's attention by displaying the time in the snake's head.
In the year 1966, Bulgari saw Giorgio's death and after contemplating who should become the new CEO to the company Gianni, Giorgio's son, took over. He was successful in making the business go international by opening branches of the stores in cities like New York, Geneva, Monte-Carlo and Paris. The Bvlgari company kept prospering and in 1980, Gianni came up with a new watch business named the Bulgari Haute Horlogerie SA headquartered in Neuchatel.
Fast forward a little, to the year 1999. The prominent watchmaker Gerald Genta came up with the original Octo brand which is held as a distinct creation in the watchmaking industry. The watch was being sold under Genta's own brand line but once the Gerald Genta brand was taken over by Bulgari, it became of the Bvlgari watch catalogue.
The Bulgari Octo was then held in high regard because of its case shape – an absolutely mind-boggling intersection between a square and a circle. However, that was not the only reason which allowed Bvlgari Octo watch to become one of the ideal watches that was conferred upon the world but its inventive designs which had no matches was also the reason why it led to overhaul in the watchmaking segment and furthered the Bulgari heritage.
The addition of the Bulgari Octo was perfect because its shape was representative of balance, harmony and power which the Bulgari watches have upheld for as long as they have existed. The Bulgari Octo and the Bulgari Serpenti need a special mention in Bulgari's history because they are amongst the most exquisite Bvlgari watches for men and women, respectively.
Fast forward a little more, the year 2016 saw the introduction of the Serpenti Incantati line which was inspired by Bulgari Serpenti watch. And coming to the year 2018, Bulgari has expanded its chain of distribution and now relies upon 300 stores which are located in the most exclusive areas around the world.
Bulgari has a clear sense of royalty associated with it because of the pure technique they inculcate in each of its timepieces. Experience and their subtle play with innovation and use of material that has never been used before which is allowing them to continue on a path of growth which all of us have witnessed over the years with the introduction of their bold yet beautiful new watch collections.