For the fourth year, Audemars Piguet donated a unique piece to the One Drop Foundation, a charity organization dedicated to ensuring sustainable access to safe water for all.
The 2022 Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph “One Drop” (Ref. 26240CE.OO.1225CE.98) is a unique one-off timepiece that was created specifically by Audemars Piguet for the La Cuvée One Drop 2022 philanthropic event in Las Vegas, and which sold on November 13, 2022, for over $1.1 million with all net proceeds going to charity.
Presented in a 41 mm lightweight, scratch-resistant black ceramic case and matching bracelet like the ceramic models introduced earlier this year, however, the Royal Oak Selfwinding Chronograph “One Drop” features a special deep blue vertically satin-finished (brushed) dial, in place of the brand’s signature tapisserie guilloché dial.
Further unique details include a snailed concentric circles finish for all three counters. Providing a slight contrast to the tone-on-tone blue dial are blackened gold applied hour markers, Audemars Piguet’s signature Royal Oak hands, and even the hand-applied Audemars Piguet logo has been given the black gold treatment.
Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Chronograph is powered by in-house caliber 4401, which drives the hours, minutes, small seconds, date, and flyback chronograph displays. Made of 381 components, the 4Hz manufacture caliber is good for 70 hours when fully wound. The chronograph is of the flyback variety, which is more complicated than a standard chronograph and allows the wearer to start, stop, and reset the chronograph in a single actuation of the pusher. Moreover, this chronograph has a technically superior vertical clutch and column wheel mechanism which has a more precise feel and no chronograph second-hand stutter, compared to a cam and lever chronograph. Additionally, a patented zero-resetting mechanism ensures that each one of the counter hands instantaneously resets to zero.
“Unique Piece” has been engraved on the titanium portion of the caseback, and visible through the sapphire window is the caliber 4401 movement which boasts Geneva stripes, circular graining, and circular satin and polished chamfers throughout. And just for this piece, Audemars Piguets fitted the movement with a skeletonized, blackened 22K gold oscillating weight with the AP logo in the center and Audermars Piguets engraved on the perimeter.
While the case, integrated bracelet, pushers, and screw-down crown are all crafted in black ceramic, the bezel is fitted with white gold hexagonal screws that offer a striking contrast to the dark surface. The watch has a depth rating of 50 meters and uses hypoallergenic titanium for the caseback, the folding clasp, and the link pins.
“The One Drop Foundation One Drop is an international foundation created by Cirque du Soleil and Lune Rouge founder Guy Laliberté, with the vision of a better world where all have access to living conditions that allow empowerment and development. Its mission is to ensure sustainable access to safe water, sanitation, and hygiene for the most vulnerable communities through innovative partnerships, creativity, and the power of art.”
Learn more at OneDrop.org.
Photos by Audemars Piguet.