The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Wall Clock
Today I'll be taking a closer look at the highly coveted, latest-generation Audemars Piguet Royal Oak wall clock. Whereas the previous generation featured a printed tapisserie, protruding hex bolts, and was generally of poorer build, AP really nailed it with this one. It is the perfect wall clock to have in one's office or meeting room to impress watch-obsessed clients and friends, guaranteed to elicit questions about where it can be bought (more on that later) and whether you are willing to sell it to them.
The tapisserie of the black dial is 3-dimensional and so are the hour batons and 'AP' at 12 o'clock. Just as on the actual wristwatches the hex bolts are recessed, and the bezel has brushed front and polished side surfaces. What is noticeably missing is the date window at 3 o'clock, and I fluctuate between the opinions that a) this is a missing element which would have completed the clock and b) this would have detracted from the symmetry and beauty of it. In any case, the detail on this piece is delicious and does justice to the iconic watch it is modeled after.
The clock measures about 15 inches/38 centimeters in diameter, and weighs 7.3 pounds/3.3 kilos. It is a heavy ornament, which should be taken into consideration when hanging it up. If it fell it would cause not inconsiderable damage.
Amusingly the clock is powered by a Quartz movement made not in Switzerland but in Germany :). It requires a single AA size battery which AP thoughtfully included in the box.
The hour batons and the hands are covered by a luminescent material just like on the wristwatches, but I've been told that the lume brightness was stronger on the previous generation model. Nevertheless, as you can tell from the above image, it is still very much possible to tell the time at night!
Now on to what most of you are probably dying to know: "how much does this clock cost, and where can it be bought?!". Audemars Piguet created these wall clocks for their boutiques, authorized dealers, and as gifts for their top clients. I have also seen them at several Four Seasons properties worldwide and I've been told that they can be found at Delta Airlines lounges in the United States. They were never intended to be sold. The conclusion is: they are a rare commodity held by a lucky few who cherish them, and this is what has made them even more sought-after. Every once in a while I have seen one or two pop up online for prices between 3,000 and 5,000 USD.* These are fair prices in my opinion so if you come across one in this price range: buy!
*It is also worth mentioning that if you find any around for around 100-300 USD they are either the inferior previous generation, or fake.