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Indie Watchmaker Remy Cools Comes of Age with the New Tourbillon Atelier

The watch of artistic maturity. More refined, more coherent, still highly desirable…

| By Xavier Markl | 3 min read |

If you are a recurring reader of MONOCHROME, you might be familiar with Remy Cools. We first met this promising young watchmaker in 2018, freshly graduated from the Lycée Edgar Faure in Morteau. Soon after, Cools presented his first commercially available model in 2020 after setting up his workshop on the shores of Lake Annecy in France, some 50 kilometres away from Geneva. As its name suggests, his beautiful Tourbillon Souscription was a limited edition available on a subscription basis only. Now 26, Remi Cools presents a stunning evolution of his inaugural watch, the Tourbillon Atelier. More mature, smaller, more elegant and still superbly finished.

The Montre d’Atelier Tourbillon retains the design DNA of the Tourbillon Souscription. If the original creation of Remy Cools was already quite impressive, this new version seems even better in every respect. To put it simply, these two watches tell two different stories.

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First of all, the watch is smaller and thinner at 39mm in diameter and 12mm in thickness – versus 40mm x 15mm for the Tourbillon Souscription. The domed sapphire crystal is less prominent at 3mm versus 5mm. Overall, the proportions are more classical and elegant. In particular, the crown is now traditionally positioned at 3 o’clock, while the Tourbillon Souscription had two flip-up keys at the back of the case, adding to the thickness of the case and making the watch slightly odd for some (it was a distinctive feature, but not everybody liked it…). Last but not least, the Tourbillon Atelier is offered in the most precious of all metals: platinum.

The symmetrical layout of the watch with the off-centred two-part dial at the top and the tourbillon at 6 o’clock has been kept intact. The large one-minute tourbillon is 13mm in diameter; it beats at 18,000 vibrations/hour (or 2.5Hz) and boasts 55 hours of power reserve. The Breguet terminal curve of its hairspring is shaped by hand. 

These elements stand out from the movement with a minimalistic but beautiful micro-blasted decoration and distinctive stepped bridges. The finishing of all parts has been upgraded and is a treat for the eyes. Turning the watch over, the movement is now entirely visible and looks no less stunning, with a geometric layout, two-step bridges and a beautifully finished ratchet. Remy Cools’ approach is based on his respect for traditional watchmaking, and all parts are hand-finished in his workshop in Annecy. Fine workmanship and meticulous attention to detail are evident throughout.

The Remy Cools Tourbillon Atelier is released in a limited edition of 36 pieces in platinum. It is presented on a calfskin leather strap. Two versions are available with either yellow or pink gold movement finishing. The price is set at EUR 159,000. If you are into independent watchmaking and have already had the chance to take a look at the Remy Cools Tourbillon Souscription, don’t miss this one. It is absolutely beautiful. And on the wrist, it’s amazing to see how nicely the watch wears. Kudos to Remy Cools!

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6 responses

  1. You mention two variants, one with yellow gold and one with pink gold movement finishing. Based on the photos though, the options for movement finishing seem to be yellow gold and rhodium(?) plated. Perhaps the yellow gold and pink gold are dial options instead?

    Personally, I like the watch although I prefer the previous version. Also, I have to call out the extremely ambitious pricing of EUR 159k – that’s about double the price of his watch from 2020(!), and I don’t think it can compete at this price point.

  2. @Skyflake – the difference between the yellow gold and rose gold editions is as such: rose gold-coloured dial with rhodium-plated movement and yellow gold-coloured dial with yellow-gold-coloured movement.

  3. It is an attractive watch but that price tag is a bit much.

  4. I was intrigued, but then I saw the incredibly out of proportion price that makes no sense. Seriously?


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