In the hills surrounding Neuchâtel (Switzerland) is the Manufacture of Panerai. A building that brings together all the specialties of haute horlogerie in the same location, combining the excellence of Italian design and the tradition of Swiss high technology.
An imposing headquarters that keeps the secrets of the firm and the essence of the brand, with a totally ecological operation. Glass walls to take advantage of natural light, solar energy and rain water for bathrooms and gardens.
Today, Panerai is one of the Olympian giants of world luxury watches, a multinational reference and one of the oldest high-end watchmaking firms.
Roots of innovation
Giovanni Panerai opened his watchmaking workshop in 1860 in Florence, the place functioned as a shop, workshop and the first watchmaking school in the city, thus the history of Office Panerai began.
Ten years after its opening, Panerai creates the Radomir for the Royal Italian Navy, a powder obtained from the radius that confers luminescence on instruments and devices. The patent for this substitution will be the first of numerous patents registered by the brand, throughout its history of innovations.
After this creation, the Italian firm created the Radiomir model shortly before the Second World War. This model was intended for submarines of the Royal Italian Navy and only 10 prototypes were produced in 1963.
The Radiomir model soon became a Panerai classic, so it is constantly evolving incorporating the latest innovations for the Italian Royal Navy.
The needs of the Navy become increasingly specific and extreme and Panerai creates watches that gave rise to current models such as Radiomir 1940, or the Mare Nostrum, of which only two or three copies were produced, exclusively for deck officers.
In 1949, the autoluminescent paste obtained from radium is replaced by Luminor, a compound obtained from tritium patented by the firm that inspired a new historical model: the Luminor.
After many years of innovations and new patents, Giuseppe Panerai died in 1972 and the management of the business and the secret contracts of the Italian Navy passed into the hands of the engineer Dino Zei and with him was born “Officine Panerai S.R.L.”
In 1993, Officine Panerai presents its first collection on a cruise ship of the Italian Navy, a collection consisting of three series of limited edition watches: the Luminor, the Luminor Marina and the Mare Nostrum, inspired by the historical models created by the firm in the Second World War.
In the year 2002, the Italian firm is already an ineludible actor in the sector of international haute horlogerie and inaugurates the Panerai Manufacture in Switzerland. A milestone for Officine Panerai, which for the first time brings together Swiss haute horlogerie, exclusive design and know-how of the brand from the best international experts who plan, develop and investigate new technical and functional perspectives.
Finally, in 2015, Panerai launches internationally Panerai’s first movement, the P.2002, a manual winding caliber with GMT function and an eight-day power reserve inspired by the Angelus movements of the forties.
Innovation, development and maximum quality
For many years, Panerai has used the concept “Laboratorio di Idee” to describe its eternal commitment to the best innovations to increase more and more the standards and performance of its parts. An exquisite laboratory composed of highly specialized workers who work with only one objective: the excellence and maximum quality of each of their pieces.
This experimental work and the high research of the Laboratorio di Idee make it possible for the firm to offer its clients some of the most innovative and exclusive materials in the sector of luxury sports watches such as BMG-TECH, Carbotech, ceramics or Panerai Composite.
Exclusive designs accompany the latest technology and the best materials in a brand starring absolute precision, which has managed to perfectly fit the equation of time in the mechanics of each of its watches.