After relaunching the Bubble collection last year and expanding that collection even further this year, Corum also introduced another new reinterpretation of a familiar model, the Golden Bridge. First launched in 1980, the Golden Bridge is an iconic watch because of it’s small, baguette shaped movement. It comes in many variants but for 2016 Corum introduces it into a round case for the first time ever. This is the Corum Golden Bridge Round.
The Corum Golden Bridge can possibly be regarded as a predecessor to the current full sapphire case-hype of you will. Industry legend Vincent Calabrese is the one who envisioned a watch case that wouldn’t be a coffin to the movement. Instead, he dreamed of a case being a display case of the mechanical engine powering the watch. The first prototype of the linear built movement he designed emerged in 1977. It was attached to the case at only two positions, at 12 o’clock and at 6 oçlock so it is almost suspended in air. Vincent was introduced to the founder of Corum, Mr. René Bannward, through a mutual friend, the curator of the International Watchmaking Museum in La Chaux-deFonds. Mr. Bannward was convinced of the possibilities of this new, revolutionary movement, and thus the first Corum Golden Bridge was made available to the public by 1980. It takes some nerve to launch such an unusual watch amidst the quartz crisis if you ask me, but it quite simply has become an iconic watch, not only in the Corum collection but in the history of watchmaking in general.
Over the years we have seen many iterations of this concept, with very classical shaped tonneau cases in gold or platinum and very contemporary versions done in titanium with a horizontally suspended movement. The inspiration for this all-new Corum Golden Bride Round comes from the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. The suspension bridge, spanning the Golden Gate which connects the Pacific Ocean to the San Francisco Bay Area, was put in use in 1937. This marvel of engineering at that time is probably the most iconic and most photographed bridge in the world. This is mostly due to the immense size of the bridge, the idyllic location and the distinctive red-ish paint that is used to coat the bridge and protect it from the elements. If you look at the construction of its road decks you clearly see the inspiration of the girder like build of the Corum Golden Bridge Round. The name almost seems predestined if you think about it: Golden Gate versus Golden Bridge. Pretty much a 1 plus 1 equals 2 kind of story right?
The Corum Golden Bridge Round doesn’t only feature a gold case, it also has a movement partially made of 18ct gold. The handwound, baguette-shaped C0113 movement’s mainplate and bridges are made of gold, as are the girders adorning the movement. The design of the movement leaves little room for extra decoration but the mainplate and bridges feature some classical hand-engraving. The girders are brushed but not decorated, nor have polished internal angles but somehow it would be unfitting to the Golden Gate inspiration. The bridge doesn’t feature any decorative polishing, so why should the watch’s girders do so? Surrounding the movement and girders there is an angled ring with simplistic applied hour markers, the brand name at 12 o’clock and the Corum-key logo on either side of it.
The 43mm wide case wears very comfortable, although it is slightly too large to be considered as truly classical in size. It is rather slim though, and with a thickness just under 9mm it is a perfect fit for business attire. It features a sapphire crystal on the front and the back and also a sapphire caseband, allowing for maximum view of the C0113 movement and the girders. The lugs on the 6 oçlock side of the case are slightly elongated to allow room to operate the crown. The Corum Golden Bridge Round comes on a supple brown alligator leather strap with a nice butterfly folding buckle featuring the Corum logo.
The Corum Golden Bridge Round is a non-limited release, and will cost you € 45,900 Euros. There are also white or rose gold and diamonds version available, setting you back a little bit more obviously (€ 52,800 Euros for white gold and diamonds, € 67,600 Euros for red gold and diamonds).
Some specifications of the Corum Golden Bridge Round:
- Case:43mm x 8.8mm, 5N 18K rose gold, sapphire front, back and caseband, water resistance 30 meters, crown at 6 o’clock.
- Movement: Calibre C0113, hand-wound, 28,800 vph 40 hours power reserve, hour and minutes
- Strap/Bracelet: brown crocodile leather, butterfly folding buckle with Corum logo in 5N 18k rose gold
- Price: $ 41,700 USD / € 45,900 EUR / CHF 45,000 – reference B113/03010, non-limited