The "Imperial Peterhof Factory" has gone through an extraordinary
300 year history with hardstones as a guiding thread!
Founded by Imperial command
The Emperor Peter the Great discovered the art of hardstone carving during his travels through Europe. Thereafter, he founded the Imperial Peterhof Factory in 1721 next to St Petersbourg because he needed a lapidary to help him build the new capital of his Empire and to introduce to Russia this extraordinary art form that was cultivated by the courts of Europe.
Technological excellence
The Imperial Peterhof Factory quickly specialized in making ornamental decorative stone objects. True to Peter the Great's renowned strive for technological excellence, it developed an outstanding know-how in carving precious and semi precious stones. Continuous imperial patronage ensured that it had always access to the best specialists and technology available.
A fashion for hardstone
The Empress Catherine the Great had a passion for hardstones: she sent specialists from the Imperial Peterhof Factory on expeditions to Ural and Altai mountains to discover new minerals that were then transformed by the Factory into lavish works of art. The Factory quickly established itself as one of the leading creators of luxury goods in Europe.
An epitome of St Peterburg’s style
Located right next to the Emperor’s summer palace in Peterhof (30 km from Saint-Petersburg), the Imperial Peterhof Factory was always very close to the wealth, influences and tastes of the Imperial family and Saint Petersburg’s high society, art & culture. As a result, the stone objects made by the Factory were often on an aesthetic scale and quality seen nowhere else in the world!
Imperial gift
The Imperial Peterhof Factory belonged to the Emperors and could only produce upon Their personal instruction. IPF objects were therefore top ranking Imperial gifts and, as such, were extremely revered. As an example, this centre table with a beautiful stone mosaic floral arrangement was commissioned by Emperor Nicholas I as a gift for Queen Victoria in 1844. It is still found today in Buckingham Palace. 
From stonecutting to watchmaking
The fashion for luxury stone objects died away after the 1917 revolution. The Factory adapted by producing precision ruby stones for watch mechanisms. It then went on to producing mechanisms for watches and then gradually became a fully fledged watchmaking factory, changing its name to “Peterhof Watch Factory” and making "Pobeda" and "Raketa" watches.
«Imperial Peterhof Factory» watches
Stones are the direct link between the lapidary origins and the current watchmaking activity of the Factory! The Factory therefore produces, under the name "Imperial Peterhof Factory", a beautiful and elegant work of art that combines its historic lapidary activity and its current watchmaking know-how.