The watch department at Cartier had a banner year in 1973 – in fact, the whole darn company did. That was the year that the three disparate houses of Cartier (in London, Paris, and New York) began the process of coming together as a singular organization under the leadership of a new group of investors.
At the same time that major change was afoot in the executive suite, the watch department was all-systems-go, putting some of the company’s most famous Swiss made Cartier replica watches designs and collections into serial production for the first time. You know the names: Vendôme, Ceinture, Fabergé, Baignoire, Gondole, Ellipse, Santos, Cristallor, Coussin, Square, Tank Normale, and the Tank Louis Cartier.
I can’t fathom a modern-day brand introducing twelve different models into serial production at the same time, within a single calendar year – and it’s not like these 1:1 UK Cartier fake watches only required dial changes, or were even just multiple sizes of the same case. These were 12 different case shapes – and 11 of the 12 were made immediately available in either a small or a large size. That’s a ton of new SKUs to keep up with, and I think what they were trying to signal to the outside world was that high quality replica Cartier watches was ready to invest in watchmaking in a major way.
Within this glut of newly available cheap Cartier copy watches, there are some that have become staples of the Cartier catalog, while others that have gradually risen to the status of collector cult classics. Still, there are others that have faded into relative obscurity and are still waiting for their moment in the sun and a potential revival. The perfect Cartier replica watches that have become staples are easy to identify, including the Louis Carter (occasionally abbreviated to L.C.) and the Santos (which I’ve personally desired ever since Stephen’s review, almost five years ago).
Serious collectors tend to chase the Baignoire and Normale, but today, we have one of that final remaining group of Cartier designs that is still waiting for its opportunity to shine. The fake Cartier Gondole (French for gondola) is a watch that easily fits inside the Cartier design language for AAA super clone Cartier watches – the case is squarish and the dial is white with highly legible black Roman numerals and blue sword hands.
However, what the case adds to the mix is what makes the Gondole special, even without it being over-the-top or flashy. What the wholesale replica Cartier Gondole watches brings to the table is just the right amount of (for lack of a better term) visual inflation, to evolve the case from a square design to one that is more of a cushion, all without turning too much into a tonneau. Oh, and who can forget that stepped case?