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The standard for reliable time measurement
The Pilot Watch Magazine
12 February 2024

Creative and innovative timepieces of the highest quality

Alpina – famous for its characteristic red triangle in the logo – is a fine watch manufacturer based in Geneva, Switzerland, which already looks back on a very long company history. It all began in 1883, when Winterthur watchmaker Gottlieb Hauser founded the Association of Swiss Watchmakers, later called the Union Horlogère. The idea: to manufacture watches cost-effectively by pooling forces and resources, and to distribute them jointly.

Hauser’s plan is a success. The Union Horlogère establishes itself on the market, quickly begins to develop its own calibers and, in addition to its branches in Switzerland, builds up an important distribution network with representatives in Germany as well as Eastern and Northern Europe. In 1901, the Alpina name is registered as a trademark for particularly high-quality timepieces.

Alpina has always looked for ways to improve the way things are done.


Quality as a prerequisite for global success

Hauser is convinced that Alpina’s quality, durability, precision and the design of its watches will make it a global player and a highly successful company. He wants to offer athletes, engineers, technicians and adventurers a unique watch, the likes of which have never been seen before. With the introduction of his concept “Alpina 4” in 1938, Hauser turned his vision into reality and revolutionized the so-called sports watch. Now, only a watch that meets the following four essential characteristics is considered a true sports watch: Anti-magnetic properties, shock resistance, water resistance as well as rust resistance.

Preferred timepieces for pilots

Strict adherence to these properties and characteristics over time makes watches from Alpina the preferred timepiece for alpinists, divers and, last but not least, pilots. In all areas where absolute reliability is essential, Alpina watches are in use. As early as the 1920s, Alpina timepieces were sold in over 2,000 stores worldwide, making the company one of the first leading manufacturers of Swiss watches.

However, the emergence of cheap and impersonal mass-produced watches almost leads to the demise of the brand, as Alpina strictly refuses to abandon its mechanical watch standards. Despite serious crisis and great difficulties, the company survives, makes its comeback in 2002 and to this day preserves the watchmaking legacy of Gottlieb Hauser.

More from Alpina

More information at

Stewart Dawson London
Stewart Dawson London

Stewart Dawson London

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