Swiss watchmaker Breguet is an old salt when it comes to navigating the Atlantic, so it was no surprise to anyone last month when members of New York’s elite found themselves climbing aboard the USS Intrepid to toast the company’s rich history.
The celebration has since moved to South Florida, at the Breguet boutique in Bal Harbor Shops. The exhibit, titled “Breguet: Watchmaker, Aviator, Innovator,” hosts a variety of artifacts from the multi-faceted company, including the invention that secured Breguet a place in history: an accurate marine chronometer.
In the days before satellites, or even radio, a ship’s navigation was only as accurate as its shipboard time measurement. Keeping a clock accurate at sea had proved an incredibly difficult task, thanks to the forces exerted on its inner workings by the ocean’s never-ending waves. In 1815, Abraham-Louis Breguet made history by producing a new type of shipboard timepiece called a marine chronometer that was impervious to the movement of the sea.