Once an upon a time in the Jura mountains during the dark and cold winters of 18th century Switzerland. Edouard Bovet, son and heir of master watchmaker Jean-Frédéric Bovet, set himself on a quest that would change his life and others after him.

In 1814, in the famous Swiss town of Fleurier, Edouard Bovet completed with success his apprenticeship in watchmaking. This was a culminating point in his life. Edouard Bovet's mind was filled with great possibilities of creating exceptional timepieces and hereafter having achieved success in his formation seized the opportunity with his two brothers Alphonse and Frédéric to travel to London. These three young Swiss talents decided to set the sails to discover the great Capital of the British Empire. London in the 19th Century was the leading city in regards to watchmaking and international trade.

Soon after his short time-lapse in London. In 1818, Edouard Bovet decided to go East. He embarked on the Orwell Ship one of many from the East India company. China would forever seal his fate. He arrived in Canton with four of his unique handmade and crafted timepieces.

Each valued at the eye-watering cost of 10'000 CHF. These four timepieces would have a value today of about a million US dollars.

In 1822, this keyed a crucial date for the House of Bovet. Edouard Bovet and his three other brothers, Alphonse, Frederic and Gustave draft together the first treaty for the creations of the Bovet company registered on the first of May in London, England. The genius that Edward Bovet was the creator of a vision for the house of Bovet. This international watchmaking venture business grew rapidly. From the watchmaking Manufacture in Fleurier, Switzerland runs by his brother Gustave. His two other brothers Alphonse and Frederic in London foreseeing the company and Edouard residing in Canton, China trading their watches locally. The house of Bovet was clearly ahead of its time by seeing the advents of today's globalized trade.

After years of expansion in China the Fleurier Watch had obtained the highest reputation and was able to build a substantial monopoly in China. Bovet was synonymous with the Chinese people and also was used as a trading currency thru out the land. These remarkable achievements will forever be remembered by historians and watch makers. In 1849, Edouard Bovet died in his hometown of Fleurier at the age of 52. Excellence and entrepreneurship are values that are timeless and above all belong to the heroes of history.

 

 

Fast forward less than 2 hundred years later to the year 2016 and The House of Bovet is still synonymous with watchmaking excellence and the tradition lives on.

One mind is behind the continuity of such a remarkable and exquisite dream.

This Visionary is Pascal Raffy, He became the owner and sole shareholder of Bovet Fleurier SA in 2001. Since then the House of Bovet has seen at its helm a remarkable man able to reinterpret what was once imagined in the mind of Edouard Bovet. As a conductor of a classical orchestra, each note and instrument have finally been tuned to play in perfect harmony with one and other.

In 2006, Pascal Raffy custodian of such a prestigious name like Bovet carried out the task of acquiring the Castel of Môtiers. This historical monument from the Canton of  Neuchâtel dates back to the 14th century and this is where the two Bovet brothers once resided. The new interpretation by Pascal Raffy for the Castel of Môtiers has seen the light shine and it was a two-year feat of engineering to create the appropriate environment to house the Bovet assembly workshop.

The journey of Pascal Raffy takes him also on the road to acquire the DIMIER 1738  Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie artisanale and also the DIMIER 1738 manufacture of dials.

The term Manufacturer can in our day and age be misleading. The House of Bovet is highly committed to excellence and can boast without flinching that every part of their manufacturing process is fully made in-house. The highest quality and care are applied to every single stage of the watchmaking process. From manufacturing the parts with the very best materials available but also machining, stamping, spirals, gear wheels, balance springs, assembly, finishing, dials, engraving, decorations, cases and in total the house of Bovet as over 41 different crafts to make these timekeepers come to live.

To experience a Bovet timepiece is a unique chance, a unique gift. A single moment to observe a work of art. These watches would be : the Recital 18, Virtuoso VII, Lady Bovet Flower of life or even the OttantaSei. Each and one of these watches lasts in the heart of the wearer.  The hora of these masterpieces is of pure joy, feelings of amazement that are rarely quenched by nothing less than magic.

These vital and often shy feelings are free and encouraged by artisanry and expression of these watches. Edouard Bovet can be proud of his dreams and legacy, less than two centuries ago making the name of Bovet sound thru out the world, his match has been found in the visionary of Pascal Raffy. His vision of what is authentic watchmaking at its highest form is nothing but clear and state in these timepieces. The work of Pascal Raffy is of great importance and the responsibility that is required for carrying such a glorious legacy is undoubtedly the personal legend of a great man.

The flame and legacy of Bovet will burn long into the future and its destiny is sealed with its history. Excellence and above all the mastery of time.

Albéric Virchaux

WATCHESPEDIA