There have been big changes at the Franck Muller manufacture over the last couple of years. The once homely property on a hillside looking out over Lake Geneva has been thoroughly expanded and modernised – Baroque and Romanesque flourishes inside and out have been updated to the more spacious proportions created by exposed beams and vaulted ceilings, all befitting of a luxurious ski lodge.
Somewhere in a light-filled room appointed with watchmaker’s benches in this village of multi-storey buildings is the Franck Muller ‘Tourbillon Department’. The warmest thing in this room, no matter the time of year, is Patrice Couston’s smile. He is the head of the Department and his passion for what he does is unmistakeable. To the extent that, after a tour and his explanation of some of the challenges faced in by one attempting to assemble a tourbillon, he reached into his pocket and pulled out a watch he had assembled in his spare time at home, also a tourbillon.
“I’m crazy for the tourbillon so I said ok, I will transform this movement into a tourbillon. So I did.”