The new member of their Atelier Collection, the elegant and imposing Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpagraph Savane brings you a winning combo of a high-grade in-house chronograph movement, a finely-crafted rose-gold body that is inspired by luxury wristwatches made in the 1930s, and, of course, a gorgeous dial with opaque amber inlays: something that you rarely see in a modern timekeeper.
Parmigiani Fleurier is a fairly young brand. Established by Michel Parmigiani in 1996 in Fleurier (hence the name,) Switzerland, the House will only turn 14 years next year. However, it is known that Mr. Parmigiani -an experienced repairman and restorer of antique watches- started seriously thinking about founding a company of his own almost 35 years ago back in the 1970s. Possibly to celebrate this upcoming “anniversary,” the brand that has immediately skyrocketed from the crowded ranks of wannabe’s to one of the most respected ultra-luxury brands based in Switzerland, is going to present a couple of new members in its refreshed Atelier Collection — the Kalpagraph Manta and Kalpagraph Savane models.
While the original series of Kalpagraph chronographs didn’t strike me as absolutely wonderful, this latest addition to the line –especially the gorgeous Savane– did the job.
The reason is, perhaps, in a much more elaborate decoration of the dials that finally managed to balance the complex shape of the chronograph’s body with its three-dimensional face.
The amber-like chronograph totalizers and brown dial, which is color-keyed to Savane’s ostrich leather strap, also look much better than the black-on-black dial and strap of the original Kalpagraph in rose gold that looks (as it is the case with the new IWC Portuguese Automatic Chronograph in Rose Gold (Ref. IW371482)) outright intimidating.
The Kalpagraph is powered by Parmigiani’s in-house PF Caliber 334 automatic movement that we have already seen last year beating inside their Pershing chronograph.
Working at a standard frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour, the movement is built on 68 jewels and is painstakingly hand-decorated by Parmigiani Fleurier’s artisans.
The only problem with the new Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpagraph Savane automatic chronograph is that you will not be able to buy it in a boutique. According to the company, all members of the Atelier Collection will be sold only during ten or something special events that will be organized in the richest parts of the world throughout the year 2010.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 3.5/5
Nighttime Legibility: 3.5/5
Value for Money: N/A
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
See also: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Don Ramon de la Cruz (refs. 26192OR.D0801CR.01 & 26287OK.ZZ.D081CR.01)
Photos: Parmigiani Fleurier
Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpagraph Savane specification
Movement: Automatic, Parmigiani Fleurier 334 calibre, in-house, the bridge is decorated by hand with the Cotes de Geneve pattern, Swiss Made
Winding: Automatic (self-winding)
Cadence of balance: 28,800 vph
Functions & Complications: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Power reserve: 55 hours
Case: Rose gold, 18-karat
Size: 37.00 mm
Height: 12.00 mm
Dial: Different shades of brown
Hands: Rose gold, luminous
Numerals: Arabic, applied, rose gold
Hour markers: Applied, rose gold
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Brown ostrich leather on rose gold pin buckle
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective