The new Blancpain 225L movement unites a carrousel, a moon phase and a date for the very first time. Having been consigned to oblivison over a century, the carrousel (karussel) was brought back by Blancpain to the forefront of the watchmaking scene in 2008, with the introduction of the world’s first flying carrousel to perform a one-minute rotation. Like the tourbillon, the carrousel also aims to reduce the effects of gravity on the rate of the movement. The distinction between these two devices lies in their construction. Whereas the tourbillon is linked to the barrel by one gear train, the carrousel has two : the first supplies the energy required to drive the escapement ; while the second controls the rotation speed of the carriage. The moon phase is another complication that had experienced an almost total eclipse until it was reintroduced by Blancpain in the early 1980s. This new fully secured movement, comprising 281 parts including 61 for the carrousel carriage alone, is equipped with silicon balance-spring technology and endowed with a five-day power reserve.
This new timepieces bears all the signature codes of the Villeret collection. The double-stepped case frames a cambered grand feu enamel dial ; a blued steel serpentine hand indicates the date, while the delicately hollowed sage leaf-type hour and minute hands sweep gracefully across painted enamel Roman numerals. The white dial features a 12 o’clock opening revealing the carrousel carriage with its complex mechanism, set exacatly opposite the moon-phase indication at 6 o’clock.
The back of the 42 mm-diameter case carries the two under-lug correctors designed to adjust the date and moon phase. This patented Blancpain innovation enables smooth tool-free handling and also serves to preserve the pure lines of the case. The same concern for detail is devoted to the finishes which are visible through the sapphire crystal case-back providing a view of the movement adorned with Côtes de Genève as well as the openworked and striated oscillating weight distinguished by a design echoing that of the carrousel carriage. An alligator leather strap in chocolate brown for the 18-carat red gold version, or black for the platinum limited edition, sets the perfect finishing touch to the pure and elegant aesthetic appeal of this model.