Parmigiani Fleurier is a relatively new Swiss brand that has been making waves in the watch industry. Collectors and casual wearers are both starting to pay attention, but what defines this company? Where do they come from? And should you give up your hard earned money to get your hands on one of their products? I answer these questions in the following passages.
Though every entrepreneurial endeavor presents significant risk, Michel Parmigiani’s decision to start his watch workshop in 1976 was especially dangerous. Why? Because the Quartz Crisis had just ravaged the industry, and very few people were investing in new businesses. Still, against everyone’s advice, Parmigiani followed his love for horology and opened his shop.
For roughly 20 years, Parmigiani worked with brands but didn’t have his own. That all changed in 1996 when he founded his own. Experts had told Michel to make this leap for years, as they saw just how talented he was. Finally, he did it, and he named that company Parmigiani Fleurier.
In the modern era, Parmigiani Fleurier produces a healthy mix of cutting edge watches and classic styles. No matter what kind of timepiece they’re creating, though, they keep the same exceptional quality standards. Most experts agree that this brand is worth at least a look, and I agree with them wholeheartedly.
Where They Get Their Inspiration
One of the strangest discoveries scientists have made is a metric called “the golden ratio.” Numerically, it is 1: 1.618, but that doesn’t tell us anything on its own. Where it gets interesting is examples of the ratio, which can be found all over the beautiful natural world. The spirals of seashells and snowflake geometry are just two of them.
The relevance of this ratio is the effect that has had on Michel Parmigiani’s designs. Not only does he take it into account when he creates his watches, but he also looks towards other aspects of nature for inspiration. This unique approach leads to him creating a multitude of timepieces with exciting designs.
Innovations They’ve Made
For such a young company, Parmigiani Fleurier has a surprising amount of innovations to their name. The following are a few of them.
- Dual Time – While two time zone watches have been around for some time, Parmigiani Fleurier managed to make the most accurate in the world. It keeps time so well, in fact, that it is the only one on the market that is accurate to within a minute on both zones.
- 30 Second Tourbillon – Most tourbillons go through one rotation in one minute. Parmigiani Fleurier decided to show off their engineering prowess by cutting that number in half. They claim that this advancement makes the watches function better.
- Bugatti Partnerships – Parmigiani Fleurier has partnered with the famous Bugatti automobile brand a couple of times now, and the results have been phenomenal. The products they’ve created are incredibly powerful and have an exciting look to them.
Parmigiani Fleurier is undoubtedly a luxury brand, so you’ll have to pay quite a bit to get your hands on one of their watches. Even the most affordable of them can still cost upwards of $10K, and the most expensive get over $50K. All I have to say is make sure you have a thick wallet before falling in love with one of these watches.
Where They Fit in the Market
One thing you’ll notice about the watch industry is that older is almost always better. New brands tend to underdeliver on quality, while the ones that are over 100 years old give you a lot more for your money. I believe that Parmigiani Fleurier is unique in this regard, as they are somewhat new, but also not gimmicky or a bad deal. They are undeniably skilled at watchmaking, and if you like their designs, they are every bit as attractive as the big name brands.
Another aspect of this brand that I like is how understated they are with their marketing. It seems like every other watch company is much more heavy-handed, whether that be Daniel Wellington with Instagram marketing or Breitling grabbing scores of celebrity ambassadors. While Parmigiani Fleurier does market themselves, they seem to do so in a much classier way. It feels organic, rather than forced, and many collectors appreciate that.
Is Parmigiani Fleurier Right for You?
The first issue you need to resolve is whether or not you have enough money for one of their products, as they are quite expensive. If the answer is yes, I would look at this brand and the other options in your chosen price range. Going with a more established brand is perfectly reasonable but choosing Parmigiani Fleurier absolutely is as well. If you go with the latter, you’ll also be wearing a unique brand that many haven’t heard of. That’s something most collectors can’t say.