How can you be wrong in your assessment based only on what we see on the Internet? Very…
I have never been interested in the Polpora brand, every time I went to their website browsing the models that have on my mind only one thought – “not for that money”, I sometimes see such opinions on different watch groups, they probably result from them from such a superficial evaluation of the brand I used so far. Fortunately, my life has verified my views in the best possible way – organoleptically, directly in the place where these watches are made.
On Friday, 25/01/2019, we went with Tomek to Zielona Góra for an appointment with the owner of Polpora Brand and a chain of salons with the watches Zegarki Biżuteria Zielona Góra – Tomasz Cerbiński.
The company’s headquarters is located in the picturesque old town, in the city center at 7 Mickiewicza Street. It is a multi-storey tenement house owned by Mr. Tomasz. Finding the shop is facilitated by the long Longines clock, proudly hanging above the entrance.
After entering the shop with watches and jewelry, our attention was drawn to the display case with watches from Polish producers. In addition to the previously mentioned Polpora, we could see the entire collection of brands such as Xicorr (greetings Adam) and Balticus (Bartek, we will visit you soon);) We had to look very characteristic, because we were immediately recognized and welcomed by Wojtek Pastyrczyk who is an employee. Wojtek invited us to the first floor where the company’s office is located. There, all the models produced by Polpora have been waiting for us on the table, since the takeover of the brand by Tomasz Cerbiński (2016), as well as the Aqua Vigor model “in parts”. All these watches are so-called. “ones” or copies with the 001 number – they are not for sale, they will remain as a display. After a while, the brand owner also joined us.
During the conversation, we learned that the goal of the Polpora brand is constant development, so that each subsequent watch had a complication that was not available in earlier models, such as a double time stamp, a power reserve indicator, or the second time zone.
The watches were previously produced in very small quantities, the limitations were 30 or 50 pieces, newer models were produced in 100 pieces. Mr. Tomasz says directly that Brand Polpora is just for him the icing on the cake and if it was his only source of livelihood he would not be able to make a living out of it – the watches are produced a small amount and the margin is really low, because of the high prices of subassemblies from Germany and Switzerland. However, creating your own watches gives incredible satisfaction and pleasure to Mr. Tomasz – which is not surprising to me, because maybe there is something more beautiful for a person with this passion than creating your own watch? It seems to me that everybody would like to create something that will be liked by other people, which is why I was not surprised by the light in his eyes and the passion with which Polpora’s president talked about current projects, but also plans for the future.
I personally like the Aqua Duo model – a more dress watch with case in rose gold and a beautifully iridescent blue dial, I had the opportunity to try it on my hands and I would be able to fall in love. Fortunately, this model is already sold out and I missed the problem of repeating in my head that I don’t need another watch
Tomek liked the model of the Globtroter, which personally surprised me with attention to detail, interesting dial and amazing, really great quality mesh bracelet – such bracelets are seen in watches with a much higher price range. We have borrowed this watch for 2 weeks to test and write a review about it that you will also be able to read soon.
Kosciuszko’s model is an unusual onehander (Tomek insisted on the fact that it is a regulator because it has a second hand). Its uniqueness lies in the fact that the central hand indicates by its longer end minutes and a shorter end hour. And so the hand in the position as in the picture indicates the time 3:52
Polpora’s greatest pride is the Polon model, the watch has been equipped with an extremely thin mechanism Sellita SW300 thanks to which the watch is only 7.9 mm thick, on the dial you can see the configuration of polonium electrons – an element discovered by Maria Skłodowska Curie. In addition, Mr. Tomasz wanted Polon to have a COSC certificate, but since it is a Polish brand, why not do it in Poland? And so this model is certified as Highly Precise Watch by the District Office of Measures in Warsaw – the process of obtaining such a certificate was not simple but it succeeded and, as Mr. Tomasz said, it was worth it.
Each of the Polpora watches is interesting and unique in its own way.
Irises with a dial enamelled by a Polish mini-artist – Mrs. Ewa Buska-Klinowska
How are watches made in Polpora?
Due to the fact that Polpora is a family company, the owner – Mr. Tomasz, daughter – Aleksandra and his wife – Beata participate in conceptual work on new models. At the beginning, the decision is always made about which movement will work in a specific timer, then the execution and decorating of the dial is discussed. To preserve the integrity of the product, also the cases are designed specifically for each model – it is worth noting that each case in the models Misico, Aqua Duo, Irises, Kosciuszko, Polon, 1918, Aqua Vigor, Globtroter is quite different. No element used in Polpora watches is mass produced, but designed, made and dedicated to a particular Polpora watch. Components are manufactured to order and assembled on site in the entire watch. And so:
Dials and fasteners are produced in Germany, with the exception of enamelled dials that are made in Poland
Cases, hands and straps in Switzerland. The straps are signed with the Polpora logo – these are real alligator, shark and ray skins.
Movements directly from well-known Swiss producers, namely Sellita, Soprod, ETA UNITAS. Sellita movements with automatic Winding have factory modified rotors at the request of Polpora.
Boxes are made in Poland by a Polish company – these boxes are made of Mahoniu and live look amazing
Cases are produced in Switzerland, but their polishing and engraving of elements takes place in the manufacture. Thanks to the kindness of our hosts, we had the opportunity to see what the process of such engraving looks like with my own eyes.
The manufacture employs a person who deals with the quality control of components sent by Swiss and German suppliers, there are also watchmakers who repair the mechanisms and verify the correctness of the walking using a vibrograph. The case water resistant tests are also carried out, and the mechanism works over a longer period of time (in rotomats). A total of 11 people work in the company.
Polpora’s plans for the nearest time are very ambitious – in the 2019/2020 collection a watch with a unique complication is to appear. We will not reveal what it will be but we are full of admiration for undertaking such a challenge which, as Tomasz explained, it took them over 2 years. The watch with an enamelled dial (enamel enamel, framchée) is also to appear at high temperatures and demanding – red shades.
The first thought that came to my mind after leaving the Polpora manufactory was “these watches really do not lack anything” and this is true, they are 100% refined. Each element is carefully thought out to fit the whole project – how many do you know watches with a date in the form of orange numbers on a black background, or red numbers on white?
I also understood that the price of Polpora results from the quality of the components used to make each watch – they are all from the top shelf, hand-processed, checked – there is no room for even the smallest mistake or fault. The level of these watches is really high, but it is worth paying extra for buying a watch – for quality.
Once again, together with Tomek, we were returning from the meeting, loaded with positive energy, people who love watches and are able to talk about them with full fascination. Stories of meetings with Swiss and German producers, which Tomasz told us, are amazing. The problems they face when creating each model only confirm that not everyone is able to do it, and you must have plenty of patience and the will to make watches in Poland.