The Roman House’s design director since 2005, Fabrizio Buonamassa, shares his expertise on reinventing the Middle East’s favourite timepiece.
What do you consider when designing a woman’s watch?
It has to represent Bulgari, it has to be consistent with the heritage of the brand DNA, and has to be recognisable. It also has to fit with the lady’s style. The bracelet has to fit with her way of thinking, it has to be smooth, it has to be easy to wear, practical and at the same time it has to be gorgeous, it has to reflect her emotions, it has to say something about her to others.
What challenges did you face with the new Serpenti?
It is a very long history behind Seddutori – we started to develop the watch five years ago. The idea was to have a very smooth bracelet, an everyday watch – a daily Serpenti. For Serpenti that’s very difficult. It has a very strong design, and a daily watch needs to be mainstream, but if we make a mainstream watch then we miss the excitement of the brand… that’s why it was difficult: to have a mainstream product, that on the other hand needs to be 100 per cent Serpenti. The bracelet needed to be smooth, easy to wear, easily adjustable with the links, and versatile.
Do you expect it to appeal to a new generation?
Yes, I think this product is very interesting for young clients, or new clients, but even for our loyal clients who already have the watch, because for some clients it feels like an evening watch, but this [design] is more easy for daily use.
Which timepieces do well in the Middle East?
Serpenti works very well, Lucea and even Bulgari Bulgari. Bulgari has a very long history with the Middle East, they are sophisticated clients that know high jewellery pieces and grand complication watches very well. I think the biggest watch collectors in the world are here in the Middle East.
What does luxury mean to you?
Quality, savoir faire and heritage. It’s not a matter of price, just a product that is able to convey the value of the brand – it’s something you can pass down someone. That’s why electronic devices are not luxury products even if they are made in gold with diamonds, because in the end they are disposable.
Discover Bulgari timepieces at the Bulgari boutique at The Dubai Mall; Bulgari.com
- Words by Natascha Hawke