LeBron James reveals a luxury timepiece of his own design for Audemars Piguet.
By Jeffrey Martin
When basketball legend LeBron James scores points for his team, the NBA champions Miami Heat, the cheers from the audience shake the arena. It's all about adrenaline. You will experience a similar feeling of power when you wear the new Royal Oak watch from luxury Swiss manufacturer Audemars Piguet. The legendary Royal Oak is the brainchild of Gérald Genta, a celebrated designer form this exclusive brand.
Celebrities and connoisseurs have admired, since 1972, Genta’s iconic timepieces for their mythical character. Audemars Piguet, in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Royal Oak series, has asked LeBron James, one of the firm’s ambassadors, to prove himself as a designer of Haute Horlogerie.
As other famous ambassadors such as Belen Mozo, Leo Messi, Michael Schumacher, Miguel Angel Jimenez or Sachin Tendulkar, have done in the past, the beloved basketball superstar, took great pride in the creation of the Royal Oak Off Shore LeBron James. The result is the best of both worlds: sports and sybaritic luxury.
This refined timepiece was specially created for a man who is dynamic, forever young and with an active lifestyle, for whom time accuracy is very valuable. The watch is equipped with a hand stitched gray alligator strap, 18K rose gold buckle, silver, titanium and black ceramic. It also comes with an additional gray rubber strap.
The 18K rose gold case gives an image of refined luxury while highlighting the powerful geometry of a self-winding chronograph with 59 rubies, 365 components, and 55 hours of power reserve. Its Méga Tapisserie gray dial contrasts with Arabic numerals and hands, made from rose gold, with date display and a seconds hand at 12 o'clock, all covered by a sapphire crystal with refractory treatment.
The diamonds set in the pusher, with the two buttons and the crown made of black ceramic, add a unique touch of classicism that will please the most demanding connoisseur.
This jewel of a watch bears an engraving that reads "Royal Oak Offshore Limited Edition LeBron James" and as proof of authenticity it also has James’s signature printed in blue on the sapphire crystal. This is a limited edition, and only 600 pieces will be produced for the brand’s exclusive clients.
The new model was presented to the public at the headquarters of Audemars Piguet in the Swiss city of Le Brassus. But its presentation to the U.S. and Latin American markets was recently held at the modern Herzog & de Meuron building in Miami Beach’s Lincoln Road, in the city where the athlete resides. The event was hosted by LeBron and Francois-Henry Bennahmias, CEO of Audemars Piguet.
"I just wanted a watch with my name engraved on it, but also one I could wear on and off the basketball court", said LeBron James talking about a piece that reflects his own aesthetics. "I don’t remember the first watch I had, but this is definitely my favorite, and also my wife´s. If you asked me to choose an Audemars Piguet, undoubtedly I would choose this one". ■
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