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The Best of the Best 2003: Watches - Parmigiani Fleurier

James D. Malcolmson

Everyone wants a wristwatch that is part mechanical genius and part great design. This year, Michel Parmigiani has endowed a single watch with liberal helpings of both. Adding a slightly edgy touch to classic wristwatch forms is a hallmark of Parmigiani Fleurier. The Forma Hebdomadaire ($16,900) exemplifies this idea, with a reworking of Forma’s tonneau shape and the addition of futuristic elements such as the triangular hands and the stark hour markers. The clean shape and the oversize Breguet-style numerals at 12 o’clock give just the right nod to convention.

Though more of a production piece than Parmigiani’s more complicated achievements, the Forma Hebdomadaire nonetheless contains a watchmaking milestone for the company: the first original Parmigiani movement built from the base plate up. Previous calibers, which are heavily modified from existing movements, all bear witness to Michel Parmigiani’s remarkable watchmaking skills, but the development of a complete movement places him in a very exclusive club.
 
Parmigiani Fleurier, +41.32.862.66.13, www.parmigiani.ch

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