Inside the Grande Maison

On 3 and 4 March, L'Orologio Club returned to visit the Jaeger-LeCoultre manufacture in Le Sentier. A building that covers over 20,000 square metres and houses over 1,000 people, 200 of whom are watchmakers. Here, it is possible to observe as many as 80 different crafts of watchmaking production, from the expertise in the manufacture and finishing of the smallest gears, to the handcrafted decoration using artistic techniques ranging from enamelling to hand guillochage to engraving and setting precious stones. In this one that is considered the queen of Swiss watch manufactures, one can study the birth of a watch from A to Z, from the shearing of metal for bridges and plates to the assembly of cases or the most precious complications. There is no haute horlogerie operation that cannot be performed within the Jaeger-LeCoultre manufacture. It is this unique feature that has fascinated Club members visiting the various departments, from the mechanical department to the atelier of grand complications, where the most precious pieces are assembled into their final form. And which radically changed their idea of the brand, still anchored to the image of the Reverso, which naturally remains the iconic watch par excellence. They said: "I was able to appreciate a very extensive production, with a very high profile craftsmanship part on the complications" and to appreciate "A very modern production process, but without losing the excellence and manual savoir-faire, preserving craftsmanship even within a large production facility". In conclusion, through the visit "I learnt that Jaeger-LeCoultre is a manufacture that creates, develops, decorates and produces all its timepieces by hand in its own workshops and, to this end, has brought together all the necessary professions, techniques and technologies in the same production area", as befits a great manufacture.