Architectural Digest (UAE)
Richard Mille is known for timepieces that break new ground in decorative brilliance. The latest is the RM47 Tourbillon, a limited edition of 75, which began life as a conversation between Richard Mille and Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso. Both are aficionados of Japanese crafts and of Samurai culture, with its fastidious code of ethics known as bushido. The RM47 is a symbolic tribute to both and, thanks to its complex workmanship, has taken four years to develop.
At the heart of the RM47 is a compact tourbillon movement, protected by a case with 11 separate components, which together represent the sacred symbols of the 18th-century Samurai chief Asano Naganori and his clan of 47 ronin warriors. The legend is honoured using finishes that evoke Japanese craft: yellow gold which recalls traditional kinpaku, or gold-leaf artwork, and enamels reminiscent of lacquerware. These bring to life the Kabuto, or Samurai helmet, which surmounts the watch face: Master engraver Pierre-Alain Lozeron and his painter wife Valérie create the decoration by hand, with each watch taking 25 hours to complete. richardmille.com