Parmigiani Fleurier’s 36mm Tonda PF Automatic Takes Home A GPHG Award
Parmigiani Fleurier is closing the year on a high note with the release of the award-winning Tonda PF Automatic 36mm. Retaining all the stylistic codes of the Swiss brand’s best-selling collection, the new Tonda PF addition aims to delight those with slender wrists. The compact model also boasts a new in-house automatic movement and comes in three iterations. The two stainless steel versions feature either a silver-gray or a dark gray dial, while the 18K rose gold version carries a deep ruby dial.
Fresh off the GPHG stage
Hot off the press (as we reported here just three days ago), the Tonda PF Automatic 36mm won the Ladies’ category at the GPHG (Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève, dubbed the “The Oscars of Watchmaking”). But despite being positioned as a women’s watch, thanks to its refined and understated design, the 36mm classic is as genderless as it comes.
The unisex appeal
The Fleurier-based manufacture has indulged us with a handful of superbly executed complications since the introduction of the Tonda PF collection just over a year ago (as we shared here). Winning not only hearts but also critical acclaim, the discreet-luxury aesthetics have quickly become the house signature for Parmigiani. The sizes have also come down from 42mm to 40mm. The newest 36mm is the smallest in the family to date. This is also the first time that a simple, non-skeletonized, time-only automatic model joins the line-up.
A new in-house movement
Housed inside this Tonda PF Automatic 36mm model is the new caliber PF770. The movement is constructed to fit into the smaller case and is wound by a 22K rose gold skeletonized rotor. It also brings the height of the case to 8.6mm. This manufacture caliber comprises 179 components and features exquisite finishing. The Côtes de Genève decoration on the bridges, the beveled edges, as well as the polishing and sandblasting on the rotor are on full display through the sapphire case back. The movement beats at 28,800vph (4Hz) and delivers a power reserve of 60 hours.
Two steel versions
True to its minimalist style, the new model is a two-hander featuring cut-out delta-shaped hands over a clean backdrop. Gone is the date on the signature Grain d’Orge guilloché dial. For the polished steel case fitted with a 950 platinum knurled bezel, two dial variations are available. The Silver Sand dial is more light gray than silver. It features hand-applied 18K gold rhodium-plated indexes. The Warm Grey dial is a darker shade, the same as the color of Andreas’s Tonda PF Micro-Rotor. It is set with hand-applied rhodium-plated indexes and 12 baguette-cut FG-VVS diamonds weighing 0.36 carats without the typical “bling”.
One gold version
For the GPHG-winning rose gold version, the Deep Ruby dial has more of a purplish tone. It also features hand-applied rhodium-plated indexes and 0.36 carats of 12 FG-VVS baguette-cut diamonds to offer subtle sparkles. The gold for the case is ethically sourced while for the bracelet and buckle, it is certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council. Each dial is sealed off by an ARunic sapphire for its excellent colorless anti-reflection on both sides. The impeccable engineering of the casing ensures water resistance to 100 meters.
The elegance of all three versions is exemplified by the fluid integration of the metal bracelet. The svelte contour from the case through the paisley-shaped lugs to the bracelet is pure class. The Tonda PF Automatic 36mm, like all its predecessors, follows the “golden ratio” that founder Michel Parmigiani famously adopted as one of the brand’s design principles. The golden ratio is the divine proportion that occurs in nature and appeals to the human eye as “beauty”.
A closing thought
I am certainly enamored with the Tonda PF, and I would be equally happy if this were a 38mm model. But if a 36mm case means it can open up women’s options for high-watchmaking timepieces beyond the conventionally feminine styles, this new darling couldn’t do a better job.
The Tonda PF Automatic 36mm Steel Silver Sand retails for CHF 18,500, the Steel Warm Grey for CHF 24,900, and the Rose Gold Deep Ruby for CHF 49,500. For more details, visit Parmigiani’s official website.
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