Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 14544BC 'Lapis Lazuli'

We count ourselves lucky that we have (had) quite some exclusive and beautiful Audemars Piguet Royal Oak models in our collection.

Museum Piece
Audemars Piguet Royal OakIn 1970, Audemars Piguet instructed Genta to come up with an unprecedented steel watch.

Introduction

We count ourselves lucky that we have (had) quite some exclusive and beautiful Audemars Piguet Royal Oak models in our collection. For example, the platinum, diamond-set, skeleton 25930, the 18k yellow-gold and diamond-set 5402, the stainless steel 5402 A-series and the platinum and stainless steel perpetual calendar reference 25820. Although carried out in a smaller size than the previously-mentioned models, the one we can offer you is not inferior to them. The diameter is 36 mm, which is 3 mm smaller than the original 'Jumbo' Royal Oak but this watch takes the cake. AP rarely uses stone dials, which is exactly one of the reasons why this 14544BC is so special. The dial of this example is made from lapis lazuli, which is a deep-blue, precious stone that you should be familiar with as we have sold quite some Rolex watches with lapis lazuli dials. However, this is the first Royal Oak with a lapis lazuli dial that we have come across. The stone dials is adorned with a factory-set, brilliant-cut diamond index. Furthermore, the watch has an 18k white-gold, octagonal bezel with factory-set diamonds. The angular case and integrated bracelet are from 18k white gold too. The case back is stamped Nº 011. The watch comes with the box, certificate and Extract from the Archives. Moreover, it has just been serviced by AP and comes with the service pouch and papers.

Description

Audemars Piguet Royal OakIn 1970, Audemars Piguet instructed Genta to come up with an unprecedented steel watch. As the story goes, he found inspiration whilst seeing a diver at work with an old-fashioned diver’s helmet near Lake Geneva. Staying up all night, Genta drew the design for a circular case with an angular, octagonal bezel, eight visible screws, and an integrated bracelet. The Royal Oak was presented in 1972 as the most expensive steel watch available and it caused an uproar: why was a distinguished maison d’horlogerie putting out a sports watch, let alone in such a pedestrian material? Some experts even predicted that the Royal Oak would put Audemars Piguet out of business. Though it took a while to catch on, the Royal Oak is now one of the most iconic and long-lasting watch designs, and has spawned an entire product line. It wouldn’t be the first time that Genta would prove a brand’s owners, customers, and industry experts wrong.