Universal Genève Polerouter

Universal Genève Polerouter

Why We Love It

From the perspective of the history of modern horology, the Universal Genève Polerouter holds a special corner all to itself. 

In many ways the Polerouter, with all of its variety, is the story of modern Swiss Watchmaking. 

This particular twisted lug beauty is remarkable even amongst other similar examples. Expertly color-matched, its rare dauphine-style handset jumps off of the glossy gilt dial. Their rich, tan lume is a study in contrast against the shiny inky black. Beneath its caseback, which still bears its factory engraving (a rarity in and of itself), spins a stainless steel bumper movement. Such mechanisms are a snapshot in the history of the automatic movements we often take for granted today. 

Those of us who collect watches are in fact collecting more than just watches. We collect stories- tales of mechanism and craftsmanship, of companies and countries, of individuals.

It is more than the ticking of hands that sets our hearts aflutter. 

The Story

Most of us, even the most diehard collectors, know only one watch designer by name: Gerald Genta.

The man behind the AP Royal Oak, the Patek Philippe Nautilus and the IWC Ingenieur, Genta changed the watch industry with his luxury stainless steel sports watches with sharp 70s lines and his characteristic integrated bracelet design.  But before he could pioneer haute horology, he had cut his teeth on a more approachable timepiece; the Universal Genève Polerouter.

The Polerouter was Genta's first watch design brought to market, penned by the young Swiss designer in his early 20s. The watch was a sales success and propelled Genta’s career forward (allowing for the greats such as the Royal Oak and the Nautilus.) The first Polerouter was released in 1954 (and originally called the POLARouter) to celebrate and promote Scandinavian Airlines’ Royal Viking polar flights between New York City, Los Angeles and Europe. The flights forged a new route over the North Pole, reducing flight times between the two continents. Flying over the North Pole presented a unique set of challenges for a watch, and the Polerouter was designed to be highly resistant to magnetic fields (in addition to the usual shock and water resistance) so as to maintain accuracy during the trip.


SKU: AS03389

Stainless steel twisted lug case is approximately 35mm (excluding the crown). Calibre 138 Automatic Bumper Movement. Circa 1960s.

Overall Condition: The case is in fantastic condition overall showing normal wear consistent with age and use. Luminous gloss gilt dial is excellent condition with evenly patinated indices and applied logo. Luminous dauphine handset has been professionally color matched. Signed crown. Caseback shows factory engraving.

Includes brown leather strap with steel pin buckle.

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