Recently I have featured high-end luxury watch brand Armin Strom twice in different editorials. The first article was entitled ‘Only Watch 5th Edition Part 1’ and showcased five unique watches including the superb One Week Skeleton Water. Impressively the auction that was held in Monaco on September 28th 2013 was a resounding success and raised € 5,066,000 ($6,965,000) for research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The One Week Skeleton Water eventually achieved a respectable price of €32,000 ($43,984). In September I wrote a second and more in depth article about the Racing Tourbillon. This watch is exceptionally rare and only two pieces were ever made.
Armin Strom are renowned for the art of skeletonizing, which can only be accomplished by the finest craftsmen. Each of their exquisite watches is meticulously hand finished and takes about a week to complete. On that basis these creations are highly desirable and treasured items. A couple of weeks ago (on December 3rd 2013) Armin Strom released a new timepiece called the Tourbillon Gravity Fire. This sensational watch was unveiled to a very receptive VIP audience at the Markerstudy Group in Kent, England.
With dimensions of 43.40mm x 13mm the watch is a similar size to the Racing Tourbillon. Realistically these proportions will entice a wide variety of buyers including the lucrative Asian market. Over the last few months I have worn many watches displaying the same measurements. For that reason I suspect the Tourbillon Gravity Fire would sit very comfortably on the wrist. I also feel the luxurious 18-karat rose gold case would make it fairly lightweight to wear. In my opinion a watch of this quality would look great with a formal dinner suit to a gala dinner event.
Visually the façade of the watch shares a lot of the exciting characteristics found in the Racing Tourbillon. Effectively the layout is presented in the same attractive and unique manner. Elements like the exposed tourbillon, stylish chapter ring and decorated movement are still integral to the success of the design. The main variations are in the general colour scheme. Whereas the Racing tourbillon uses a palette of red and black, the Tourbillon Gravity Fire is predominantly gold. These subtle refinements (including the flame motif inspired engraving) give the watch a completely different dynamic that will appeal to serious collectors.
Armin Strom has equipped this beautiful watch with the equally impressive caliber ATM13. This automatic tourbillon movement comprises 26-jewels and oscillates at a frequency of 18,000 vibrations per hour. Each of the 197 individual components has been fastidiously hand decorated and assembled in house. To make the mechanism even more exclusive, the escape wheel and pallets are constructed from solid gold. Functionally the Tourbillon Gravity Fire features hours, minutes and small seconds (displayed on the tourbillon). The watch also has a unique micro rotor winding mechanism and a formidable power reserve of 110 hours.
The Tourbillon Gravity Fire has a genuine brown alligator horn-back strap with matching double-fold clasp and is limited to only 50 pieces. Priced at: CFH 145,000 (approximately $161,500).