Italian jewellery house Bulgari became a watchmaker accidentally when, in 1975, they made 100 unique watches as gifts for important customers. The popularity of this limited release meant that the iconic Bulgari Bulgari followed soon after. Today their watches include the popular Octo and the Lucea lines. Explore Bulgari’s timepieces at Time+Tide.

HANDS-ON: Is the Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial in satin polished steel the best steel sports watch of 2020?

Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial

Editor’s note: We’ve had quite the flurry of Bulgari lately, mostly in celebration of the brand’s 2020 collection. And, increasingly, the pinion of the collection is emerging as this model right here. Make no mistake, it doesn’t rightly deserve to be. It’s a simple dial variation away from the black lacquer dial variation that the satin polished steel Octo Finissimo debuted with in January this year. But that’s the logical take. The emotional response, for the broader team, and not just me it seems – is very much centred around this lavish combination of rich blue dial, and the highly faceted and finished steel of its case and bracelet.  Well, we all knew it was coming. There was no way that Bulgari was going to release the Octo Finissimo in satin polished steel, and not create a model with a blue dial. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial in satin polished steel is the best attempt by any watchmaker in recent memory of creating a genuine Patek Philippe Nautilus or Audemars Piguet Royal Oak competitor. Bulgari had to make this watch. And now that it’s here, the burning question on… Read More

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The Bulgari x The Rake x Revolution “White Light” Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT is seriously lit

One of the key pillars of a well-made watch is legibility. Consumers are always critical of how a dial is laid out and how strong and visible the luminescent material becomes once it’s in a darker setting. The Bulgari x The Rake x Revolution “White Light” Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT brightens up 2020 with its fully lumed dial. This watch is seriously lit. The case The Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT is the world’s slimmest self-winding watch with a chronograph and GMT function, with a 42mm extra-thin titanium case that is only 6.90mm thick. The case maintains the baroque faceted profile, but differs from the production version through the inclusion of a tachymeter scale etched into the bezel of the watch – which only increases the level of utility and functionality on an already complex watch. The titanium push-down crown is set with a ceramic element, and the watch has a depth rating of 30 metres. The dial The dial shares the same layout as the production model, but is taken to new heights with its “White Light” makeover. Like an F.P. Journe Élégante, the dial is entirely made of a luminescent material that creates a positive display, in favour of… Read More

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VIDEO: Finally…! The Bulgari Octo Finissimo satin-polished steel with blue dial captured in glorious high definition here

Bulgari Octo Finissimo satin polished steel

The Bulgari Octo Finissimo has seen the update it was waiting for this year, with the announcement in January that it was going to be produced in steel. The months since that announcement have felt both very slow and very fast at the same time, and some may have missed that the Bulgari Octo Finissimo satin-polished steel is now available in both black and blue dial colours, giving fans of the brand the option of dialling up the dress or sport factor. Recently, Time+Tide was fortunate enough to spend some time with the blue dial reference at Geneva Watch Days, where we took the time to soak up what may well be the best new sports watch of 2020, with the heavily faceted case engineered to be water resistant to 100m. The blue dial is certainly the most viable option as a daily wear within the Octo Finissimo range, with the black dial perhaps a more suitable evening companion. Bulgari Octo Finissimo satin-polished steel with blue dial price and availability:  The Bulgari Octo Finissimo satin-polished steel with blue dial is $17,800AU and is available from both Bulgari boutiques and authorised dealers across the country. Made in partnership with Bulgari. However,… Read More

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HANDS-ON: Is the Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial in satin polished steel the best steel sports watch of 2020?

Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial

Editor’s note: We’ve had quite the flurry of Bulgari lately, mostly in celebration of the brand’s 2020 collection. And, increasingly, the pinion of the collection is emerging as this model right here. Make no mistake, it doesn’t rightly deserve to be. It’s a simple dial variation away from the black lacquer dial variation that the satin polished steel Octo Finissimo debuted with in January this year. But that’s the logical take. The emotional response, for the broader team, and not just me it seems – is very much centred around this lavish combination of rich blue dial, and the highly faceted and finished steel of its case and bracelet.  Well, we all knew it was coming. There was no way that Bulgari was going to release the Octo Finissimo in satin polished steel, and not create a model with a blue dial. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the Bulgari Octo Finissimo blue dial in satin polished steel is the best attempt by any watchmaker in recent memory of creating a genuine Patek Philippe Nautilus or Audemars Piguet Royal Oak competitor. Bulgari had to make this watch. And now that it’s here, the burning question on… Read More

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HANDS-ON: The Bulgari Aluminium time-only – a summer-fresh take on a ’90s lightweight classic, still a winning formula, still fresh

Bulgari Bulgari aluminium

The strangest feeling is to be had when you first put on the Bulgari Aluminium time-only — if you actually get it on in the first place. Holding it makes you do a double take and shift it from left to right hand as if to check your own function as a makeshift human set of scales. Yes, this is metal, but we’re not used to light, cool, matt aluminium in a watch case. Then there is a chunky rubber bracelet. Yes, a linked rubber bracelet, in itself a novel concept that surprises in equal amounts. My entire image of Bulgari is changing as I am handling the watch for the first time. An image that in 2020 is one of record-breaking Haute Horlogerie, the unfathomable elegance and thought-provoking feeling of a paper-thin watch with the magic of a tourbillon, somehow at odds with this fresh breath of summer. And I love it. The unbearable lightness – and coolness – of aluminium My first associations are close to the cool technical feel of a Leica camera body when I peruse the details — details that surprise and amuse. First, the surprising nature of its chunky yet light case – an angular… Read More

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HANDS-ON: A poetic tribute to the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Automatic

Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Automatic

Editor’s note: Fergus Nash, the writer of this piece, is one of Time+Tide’s newest members of the writing team. Increasingly, I am finding that his point of view – rich with analogy, kaleidoscopic associations and energy – is connecting me with the watches he writes about in new ways. Not just new ways, enriching ways. Consider this piece. One of many OF Tourbillon Chronograph reviews. But I’ll wager it will be the most memorable you will read, if not just for the visual treasure map of imagery that it creates, and leaves glittering in your mind. Every now and again you’ll see an object where the stars have aligned, and everything just looks in its right place. This seems to happen disproportionately often with Bulgari’s Octo Finissimo line, a range of watches that sets out to melt the hearts of design lovers as well as smash the record books of technical achievement. With its perfect proportions, balance of symmetry, colour and weight, the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Automatic is just the latest triumph in a long, long line. The dial Though there’s no shortage of skeleton dials in the world of ultra-luxury chronographs, there’s something about the Octo Finissimo that… Read More

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VIDEO: My biggest 180 of 2020 is admitted in this video about the new Bulgari Bulgari Aluminium Collection…

Bulgari Bulgari aluminium

It seems to happen about once a year. I must sheepishly admit that I was wrong about a watch. In 2019, I offered a full retraction to Girard-Perregaux regarding the Laureato, a watch that I not only came to love but purchase. In 2020, it’s apology time once again. And this time, it’s to the Bulgari Bulgari collection after the recent launch of the Bulgari Bulgari Aluminium pieces. I won’t steal all of the video’s thunder though, please watch it to hear in full. Jumping from the personal to the bigger picture, Bulgari is in the business of turning heads in 2020 with the announcement of their record-breaking Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Skeleton Automatic, the new Octo Finissimo in satin polished steel, and then their remarkable High-End Watch novelties. But there’s another collection that is causing worldwide whiplash – the Bulgari Aluminium collection. In a true revitalisation of the Bulgari Bulgari collection that saw success in the ’90s, the Bulgari Aluminium collection offers a new entry point to the world of Swiss-Italian watchmaking, and does so in a way that is oh-so-Bulgari. It forces a re-examination of what a luxury sports watch is and, just like the first Bulgari Octo… Read More

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