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Monday, January 09, 2006 


Hublot watchesHublot was born out of a desire to transcend contemporary watch design and produce a unique watch line. Creator Carlo Crocco acquired strong notions of beauty growing up in a family of watchmakers, and by 1977 had designed his first watch. In 1980 he established his own company, MDM Genève, hoping to create a watch whose elegant and sporty design would be appreciated the world over.

Crocco was determined to develop a watch that not only had pure lines and a respect for the materials used, but one that transcended changing fashions and could be worn in both elegant and informal situations. His first rule was simplicity: no superfluous design elements. The look was modeled after a porthole (Hublot, in fact, is French for porthole), and the watch made from materials ranging from finely brushed steel to gold. Twelve titanium screws anchored the bezel to the case, marking the hours in a confluence of form and function. As for the case itself, it required no less than 160 manual operations to obtain the desired degree of perfection. For the strap, Carlo Crocco decided leather was too fragile. While looking at a working drawing of the watch, on which the strap was represented in basic black, he was struck by how matte black could perfectly complement both steel and gold. But what material could deliver such a deep, rich satin black? It suddenly came to him: rubber.

After three years of research, the revolutionary rubber strap was ready for production. Supple, light, and highly durable, the strap also had a delicate vanilla scent. The corrosion-resistant strap was also reinforced with invisible steel inserts and sported a double-hinged clasp, ensuring a solid attachment to both the wearer’s wrist and the watch itself. The Hublot watch was thus born, its natural rubber strap ensuring its status as a one-of-a-kind timepiece.

Colleagues and competitors were dubious when Carlo Crocco presented the Hublot watch at Basel Fair in 1980, but were soon won over as it went on to become the “Sensation” of the year. The Hublot became instantly recognizable, its swift acceptance surpassing all expectations. Members of several royal families spontaneously showed their enthusiasm for the Hublot, and it soon became the choice of the world’s leading personalities. Carlo Crocco had taken a bold risk, and in a few short years Hublot watches were elevated into the exclusive circle of prestige Swiss watchmaking houses.

In the mid-1990’s, natural rubber came to the attention of renowned watchmakers as evidenced by their recent models. This fact proves the validity of the choices that led to the creation of the Hublot watch and reinforce its status as a “Classic”. For Hublot, the rubber is not a fashion trend but it represents its philosophy, a way of life and the trade-mark of the brand.

Hublot is a family firm by essence. While the watch industry is going through a period of realignment and Watch Manufactures are being acquired by luxury conglomerates, Hublot is proud to maintain its independence and its exclusive personality.

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