Since 1860, Constant Girard-Perregaux strove to develop an unrivaled watch whose movement was not just a purely technical component but also instantly recognizable. Contrary to his peers, whose work quality was to focus on technical details or finishing, Constant directed his research towards the architecture of the movement.

He thus developed the famous parallel “Three Bridges” under which the mechanism was aligned. Initially, they were straight with pointed ends and produced in nickel silver. The tourbillon won first prize and its precision record remained unbroken for a considerable time. That same year, the watch won a medal at the Paris World’s Fair.

Trois Ponts

Tourbillon with three Bridges, 1867 © Girard-Perregaux


Continuing his work, Constant Girard-Perregaux honed the design of the Bridges which took the shape of arrows with spreadout ends. In addition, 21 carat gold replaced The nickel silver as the functional material. the movement was filed by Constant Girard- Perregaux in March 1884 with the United States Patent Office.

After the Paris World's Fair, the famous watch and jewelry retailer, Hauser, Ziwy & Co, running the “La Esmeralda” stores in Paris and Mexico, were appointed to market the watch. This is where the name we know today originated.

125th Anniversary

© Girard-Perregaux


La Esmeralda remains an enigma to this day but it is still an
endless source of inspiration.