Chopard St. Moritz Chronograph Salmon - Ref. 8333
The L.U.C. collection highlighted watchmaking proficiency, the Mille Miglia relationship strengthened, and they became the official partner for the Cannes Film Festival. The 1990s was a memorable and significant decade for Chopard's reputation and social standing. And it was during the later years that this piece left the watchmaker's bench, the St. Moritz Chronograph Salmon 8333 – a reference that reflected the upscaled and glamorous lifestyle of regular visitors to the St Moritz resort, expertly bridging sophistication and capability.
Although an integrated luxury sports watch from the closing stages of the 20th century is the subject, the St Moritz isn't wholly derivative of a certain famed watch designer, but rather it interprets the sport elegance influences in a bespoke manner. Take its bezel with its eight exposed screws that are uniquely paired up at each quarter placement around a uniquely stylised brushed bezel. Familiar, yet different. The bezel mirrors the finishing throughout the tonneau case – a principally brushed affair with tastefully considered polished accents to underline the St Moritz's industrial elegance. Its pump pushers are also worth discussing as their size is not only wonderfully unassuming but their rectangular shape can also be found throughout the bracelet. Integrated directly into its case with screws for each link hidden around the back, the ingot-shaped design of the bracelet is retro-cool; again, familiar yet different. Worthy of note is that this 8333 has a completely integrated bracelet rather than the later non-integrated design, a huge plus.
If each manufacturer were associated with only one dial colour, Chopard and salmon would be an immediate pair. Its quiet, luxurious hue is only a few degrees from a widespread silver dial, yet its conviction is much more curated. It also represents a rare occurrence for the St Moritz, with rumours suggesting extremely low amounts of salmon chronograph ref. 8333 examples (probably less than 20 pieces). But it's not just the tone of this dial that is exciting, as the adornments and techniques Chopard deployed especially convey a sense of intrigue. As is frequently the case with compelling dial design, depth and texture are culprits. Heavily multifaceted raised markers with a singular Roman numeral at twelve are the most commanding elements, while the remainder of the depth comes from varying heights of the dial itself. A radially brushed outer is the home for the aforementioned markers, a canvas which sits lower than the Chopard signed centre of the dial with its sunburst finish. Bridging the gap between these two sectors are each of its sub-registers, all carrying concentric circle guilloché as well as counterbalance-less hands. The dynamism of this dial is remarkable. A tonal matching date complication neatly nestled between four and five o'clock and a conventional set of pencil hands completes the casual personality of this chic salmon chronograph.
While the Alpine Eagle of 2019 may be Chopard's modern take on the St Moritz, we can learn more from this 1980s child than purely its history. At the time of writing, only blue, grey, and black dial variants of the Alpine Eagle Chronograph are available on the Chopard website. Salmon has made its way to the three-hand Alpine Eagle, but it's yet to be introduced into the Chronograph. If it's one thing we've learnt from watch manufacturers is that they're typically creatures of habit and following history. It could soon be the time of the salmon dial for the Alpine Eagle Chronograph. In the meantime, this 8333 currently stands as one of the few integrated bracelet sports chronographs from Chopard with a salmon dial, which deserves to be celebrated.
Powering this St Moritz Chronograph is the Frédéric Piguet calibre 1185. This modular ultra-thin chronograph calibre delivers 42 hours of autonomy, beats at a frequency of 21,600 vph and utilises 37 jewels to achieve this. At one time it held the record for the thinnest automatic chronograph movement, and with its column wheel and vertical clutch, it's no wonder it was a go-to choice for many similar maisons to Chopard. The finish of the movement is much like the watch itself, unassuming in its elegance, with subtle Geneva striping accented by modest anglage.
How It Wears
The 8333 is a fantastic piece to reach for as the warmer months roll in. At 37mm in width, it's a wonderfully unisex size that is as easy to wear on smaller and larger wrists. Furthermore, its stainless steel realisation ensures a true carefree wearing experience with dependability and robustness. After all, it was designed to perform first on the Alps and later in the restaurant seamlessly, and it most certainly still delivers.
This Chopard St. Moritz Chronograph Salmon 8333 is presented as a watch only and remains in very good condition displaying light signs of wear.
After acquiring the renowned name from the original owner's descendants in the 1960s, Karl Scheufele III toiled with his close family to strengthen Chopard, bestowing the running of the watchmaking department to his son, Karl-Friedrich. History tells us that the 1970s and 1980s were a tumultuous time for Swiss watchmaking. While the turmoil caused by the expansion of quartz-powered timekeeping was unavoidable, a revelation occurred at the high end of the industry: luxury watches made from stainless steel, and they were decidedly sporty. 'Sport Elegance' was the new wave, and while early adopters paved the way, Karl-Friedrich quickly noticed this new trend and wanted Chopard to have some skin in the game. After convincing his father the concept was good for them despite typically only working with precious metals and gemstones, in 1980, the St Moritz was born – an integrated bracelet luxury sports watch named after the famed skiing resort in the Swiss Alps and made to epitomise the lifestyle of its visitors.
Chopard reverted to its roots with two-tone examples of the St. Moritz, diamond set pieces, and full gold references coming to fruition. Staying true to their dedication to watchmaking, Chopard released chronograph variations of the St. Moritz in the form of the 8333 and the 8386. One of the easiest and quickest ways to tell these pieces apart is by their bracelets, with the former reference carrying a truly integrated bracelet, while the latter has a straight-end link that can be removed. The St.Moritz was eventually discontinued as the brand explored more clear cut-defined series' such as the L.U.C. and Mille Miglia. However, in a move comparable to what occurred during the 1980s, Karl-Fritz approached his father, Karl-Friedrich, to see if they could re-create the St.Moritz but for a 21st-century run. This series became the Alpine Eagle, first debuting in 2019.
If you desire to take a closer look at this precious timepiece, don't hesitate to contact us and make an appointment. We are based in Ghent, Belgium
No stock kept on site
* Every watch is delivered in a Mr WATCHLEY Membrane Protection Box for a safe transportation in addition to its original set *
Frédéric Piguet calibre 1185
|Steel on steel bracelet
|Steel Chopard Bracelet