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A 'divine' timepiece for Rs 27 lakh

Last updated on: February 22, 2013 10:08 IST

A 'divine' timepiece for Rs 27 lakh

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BS Reporter in Hyderabad


It has an image of Lord Venkateshwara carved in enamel and its manufacturers say it would make time-tracking a divine experience.

However, to own this luxury watch, you have to pay Rs 27 lakh (Rs 2.7 million). And, you would have to wait for four months for its delivery.

Swiss luxury watchmaker Century Time Gems, along with Rodeo Drive Luxury Products (a Bangalore-based boutique for international brands), launched what they said was the "world's first single sapphire Lord Venkateshwara edition wristwatch."

Cased in sapphire and studded with 34 rubies, an equal number of emeralds and 13 diamonds, only 333 pieces of the metallic men's wristwatch, handcrafted in 18-carat red gold, would be available worldwide.

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Photographs: Courtesy, Rodeo Drive Luxury Products

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On the four-month waiting period for the watch, the manufacturers said it took several days of quality craftsmanship, precision cutting and skillful polishing to make one sapphire case alone.

"Global Indians would love this limited edition," said Rodeo Drive Managing Director Prithviraj Bagrecha. To ensure it was a collector's item, each watch would be different, he added.

Century Time President and Chief Executive Officer Philip W A Klingenberg is hopeful these watches would help make the brand popular.

"We did not choose Venkateshwara, Lord Venkateshwara has chosen us through Prithviraj (of Rodeo Drive)," he added.

Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) is also associated with the launch.

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Image: It took several days of quality craftsmanship, precision cutting and skillful polishing to make the watch.
Photographs: Francois Lenoir/Reuters

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For every such watch sold, "a certain percentage" of the proceeds would be contributed to the Balaji Institute of Surgery, Research and Rehabilitation for the Disabled (BIRRD), a charitable orthopaedic hospital in Tirupati run by TTD.

While Rodeo Drive marketing director Gowtham Udayshankar declined to specify the contribution towards BIRRD, TTD executive officer LV Subramanyam said, "We do not have a business plan for this."

Subramanyam said the launch of the watches would pave the way for a number of other such partnerships. "We will certainly encourage more such partnerships," he said, adding TTD would be associated only with products that promoted faith.

Dismissing criticism on merchandising the image of Sri Venkateshwara, he said, "We are not selling anybody's sentiment."

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Photographs: Courtesy, Rodeo Drive Luxury Products

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