PuristSPro visits Audemars Piguet Renaud & Papi
I am very pleased to share a special visit made to Audemars Piguet Renaud & Papi, known more simply as APRP. AP organized the visit to the high end watchmaking facility after completing our tour of Art Basel in Basel, Switzerland. If you missed that report, you can find it by clicking the link below:
Dominique Renaud and Giulio Papi originally founded their workshop together in 1986. In 1992, when expanding their Manufacture, Audemars Piguet came on board as a partner, and APRP was formed.
APRP is located in LeLocle, Switzerland
And the head man, Giulio Papi
I have been fortunate to meet Giulio on several occasions. As with the previous meetings, Giulio makes mention of the fact that all new designs and studies are created by hand, and he has the sketches to prove it
Development and construction documents are then created using CAD software. Here we see the drawing for the movement inside the Royal Oak Extra Thin Tourbillon
To hear Giulio speak about the many steps and studies that go into analyzing a design is incredible
In some instances, large scale models are created to assure the integration of parts and viability of a design
When you see a tray of watches at APRP, you know it consists of special pieces
How about a few Royal Oak Concept GMTs...
Such a beautiful movement
It is very easy to see how passionate Giulio Papi is about his work. He is a very hands on individual. When Giulio walks through the various workshops at the facility, it is if he is on the very same level as all of his watchmakers (who incidentally, are primarily young in age). He engages the workers and is like a peer, not a boss.
Back to the Royal Oak Extra Thin Tourbillon we saw in design stage, here we see a watchmaker about to fit the back plate to the movement
All of the workers have specific duties and the necessary resources to complete their work
I watched this woman meticulously examine the brush strokes and bevel on a piece she was polishing
Here she makes a pass over a flat area
And next a beveled area, all by hand under her watchful eye
To complete this part...
And then repeat the process again
There are countless state of the art machines at APRP
And raw materials to work from
A sampling of parts all made within the facility
And of course, you see special watches on the workers too. Keen eyes will immediately recognize Giulio Papi's Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar in steel and platinum, a watch he wears daily
Forged carbon / ceramic 44mm Royal Oak Offshore
Even a Jumbo on the wrist of a dear Friend
And can you ever beat a white dial Royal Oak Chronograph?
One last return to the Royal Oak Extra Thin Tourbillon, here cased and basically complete
I would like to thank Audemars Piguet, Giulio Papi, and all of the talented workers at APRP for making our visit possible. We are very fortunate to receive such a detailed look inside one of the finest watchmaking manufactures in the world.
This message has been edited by MichaelC on 2014-07-07 16:52:33