“Traditions provide new generations with a unique way of reconnecting with their identity, it is why they last. Braudel said that ‘in order to hope, in order to move forward, we also need to know where we come from.’ The Big Bang Bavaria is a concentration of history and traditions.” – Jean-Claude Biver, Chairman of Hublot
It is in Germany, in the mountainous landscapes of Bavaria, that Hublot and Meindl are cultivating tradition in the present… and in the future. In accordance with craftsmanship and age-old materials, the watchmaker and the tanner have fused their expertise to create the Big Bang Bavaria. Cut from bronze, it is strapped onto two robust, hand embroidered bracelets in deer leather. What could be more appropriate than launching this watch, which symbolises Bavarian traditions and innovation, during the world’s most renowned festival—Oktoberfest?
For the first time, Hublot has cut its Big Bang case out of bronze, a material created in 3000 BC that has the advantages of non-magnetism, resistance to corrosion and a unique appearance. While it is not stainless, bronze is covered with a natural patina that protects it and gives it an unparalleled finish. The case back is in black ceramic whereas the screws are in 3N gold. Tanned and burnished by hand, each strap and case are different and unique. Time will add distinction and character to the Big Bang Bavaria. Just like leather, the Hublot bronze, with its yellow pink tones, becomes enhanced over time.
Centuries of expertise and tradition lie behind the Big Bang Bavaria strap. Firstly, the craftsmanship of a family that has been passing down its passion for leather from father to son since 1683. The Big Bang Bavaria strap is reminiscent of the “Lederhosen”, the short leather breeches that originated in Bavaria and have been the traditional clothing of the mountain people since the 18th century. Just like the garment from which the strap draws inspiration, it is cut in deer leather and hand-embroidered with a pattern only possible to create on deer leather. Traditional sewing gives a 3D effect to the leather tanned using the Meindl tradition.
It takes 3 to 4 months to tan the hide using an age-old technique. The hides are salted then plunged into a limestone-based liquid before being washed, then treated by hand with cod-liver oil and dried. The last two steps are repeated several times until the leather is entirely soaked with the oil. The hide is left to dry in the sun to develop a light brown colour. To bring out the velvet character of the leather is then rubber with sandpaper. Meindl then applies and brushes the leather with several tropical wood bark colorants, a procedure repeated up to 5 times. The products used are all without preservatives or chemicals to respect nature.
Delivered with two “One Click” straps, the Big Bang Bavaria easily changes its look thanks to its patented attachment system. There’s a version with a cuff in natural light brown deer leather, enhanced by two leather tabs embroidered with a deer head. The second version comes in “altsalzburg” (black-brown)- coloured deer leather, embroidered with oak leaves. The Big Bang Bavaria beats to the rhythm of Unico, the Hublot manufacture movement, with 330 components for a 72-hour power reserve—a self-winding bidirectional movement with a flyback chronograph and a column wheel on the side of the dial.
As tradition demands, the Hublot Big Bang Bavaria was unveiled at 16.00 on the dot at the Hublot Boutique in Munich in true “Wiesn’ spirit with Meindl present Uttering “O’zapft is” (“It’s tapped!”), Ricardo Guadalupe opened the first barrel of the event just like at the Oktoberfest. It took 3 taps of the mallet to get the beer flowing.