Las Vegas Is Keeping Watch: The Times Are Changing

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The world premiere of Girard-Perregaux's Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon at the Wynn Resort was a historic moment not only in watchmaking but also in the development of Las Vegas. "What's On, The Las Vegas Guide" was there to see this coming of age moment--where Las Vegas is no longer just a place to make a bet or see a show, it's become a sophisticated consumer marketplace, one where unique merchandise and innovations are now being showcased.

The thing that makes this watch interesting is the mechanics of it

The Wynn Resort recently hosted Ron Jackson, the president of Girard-Perregaux, one of the oldest and most esteemed Swiss watch manufacturers in the world, as he unveiled a watch of technological wonder and ingenuity.

The Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon has been designed to combine a Tourbillon and a functioning slot machine--one with reels made of gold that can be set in motion by pulling a handle on the right side of its case. The challenges in creating this watch were enormous and it took nearly three-and-a-half years to develop from concept to production. In fact, 501 pieces comprise the watch, all of which were created and assembled by skilled artisans and master watchmakers.

Jackson arrived in Las Vegas this week to deliver the one-of-a-kind Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon to the Wynn & Co. Jewellery store, located in the Wynn Resort's elite Esplanade. Douglas C. Bradstreet, the watch and jewelry buyer for the property, had bought the watch long before it was produced, based solely on conversations and design sketches. He, too, had compiled a list of interested buyers all clamoring for the Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon well before it arrived in Las Vegas.

This is the first watch out of production and it's already been sold to an unnamed gentleman who resides in Las Vegas for the price of $625,000.

"The thing that makes this watch interesting is the mechanics of it," said Jackson about the Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon, which utilizes fine materials but is not replete with diamonds and gems. "Ninety percent of its value comes from the movement."

For more details about the Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon, a closer look at the way it works, detailed comments from Jackson and Bradstreet, as well as a look at Las Vegas in terms of becoming a global city equal to New York, London and Paris, visit http://www.whats-on.com and go to the "Features" page.

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Renee LiButti
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