Total transparency: Bell & Ross BR-X1 – the Chronograph Tourbillon Sapphire watch with a skeletonized effect


Bell & Ross BR-X1 Chronograph Tourbillon Sapphire: Three new unique pieces for 2018, two online exclusives.

Bell & Ross BR-X1 Chronograph Tourbillon Sapphire - mr porter

Bell & Ross BR-X1 Chronograph Tourbillon Sapphire on Mr.Porter. photo:


A skeletonized version of the exceptional BR-X1 watch was unveiled by luxury French watch company Bell & Ross at the 2018 Baselworld, as part of a collection that underscores the bold creativity of Bell & Ross.

Of the six new unique pieces created, three examples that marry transparency and color were presented at this year’s Baselworld Watch and Jewelry Show. Then by embracing sales innovation: two of the watches were exclusively available online. This marks a real watershed moment in the Haute Horlogerie sector, once again proving Bell & Ross’ avant-garde spirit in e-commerce and the digital.

As iconic as difficult to work with, sapphire is the embodiment of invisibility: a paradox of solidity and visual transparency. Scientists –who call it corundum– know it as the second hardest material on Earth after diamond, almost impossible to scratch. For watchmakers, creating a case from a block of sapphire is a true technical challenge. It requires long and complex machining, grinding and polishing processes and superior expertise. The case of the BR- X1 SKELETON TOURBILLON SAPPHIRE is made from five blocks of sapphire, which are carefully worked on before being assembled with the greatest precision

bell & ross 2018 transparent-BR-X1 unique pieces

The full case is cut out of five blocks of sapphire and it takes several days to produce the components for this single watch. photo: bell & ross watches


Housed within the full sapphire case is a hand-wound skeleton flying-tourbillon movement, manufactured in-house by Bell & Ross, which, when brought together on the translucent rubber strap, showcases a unique “floating” look upon the wrist.

MR PORTER, the award-winning online destination for men’s style, was the only retailer of the Blue version of the BR-X1 Skeleton Tourbillon Sapphire – the only one in the world – where parts of the watch, including the dial, the main plate, hour and minute hands, screws, the bridges and flying tourbillon cage have a unique deep-blue finish. This ground-breaking timepiece was be the most expensive item available to purchase on MR PORTER in its seven- year history.

“We have started a very successful partnership with MR PORTER for a year now and we are especially proud of this new project. Always ahead of its time, Bell & Ross marks a turning point by breaking, once again, the traditional watchmaking codes and shows that high-end luxury and digital can combine perfectly,” explained Mr Carlos A Rosillo, CEO, Bell & Ross.

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photos: bell & ross – / mr.porter