Armin Strom this week introduces Lady Beat, the independent Swiss watchmaker’s first watch designed with feminine customers in mind. And while the new collection aesthetically echoes Armin Strom’s existing Gravity Equal Force collection, with its open-dial three-bridge design, Armin Strom has built an all-new, less-complicated caliber and has placed it within a fairly thin new 38mm case, a first for the brand.
Armin Strom explains that the Lady Beat was designed in concert with female design consultants, who sought to answer the question: “What does a woman desire on her wrist?”
Thus, the new Lady Beat features an off-center dial that displays only a minute and hour hand with no markers except the company logo at 12 o’clock. This contrasts with the classic three-hand display with small seconds found on the Gravity Equal Force.
And, instead of powering the watch with a visible micro rotor (as on the Gravity Equal Force) Armin Strom has developed a full-sized central rotor and placed it on the back of the new Caliber ALA20.
And while the wearer can still eye the movement’s vibrating balance directly on the front of the Lady Beat, Armin Strom has removed the stop-works declutch system and novel ‘equal force’ motor barrel from the new caliber. This allowed Armin Strom to create a caliber for Lady Beat that is thinner than the movement inside the existing Gravity Equal Force.
Also contributing to the Lady Beat’s “soft shapes” design brief, Armin Strom replaced classic lugs in favor of an integrated strap. Circles and semi-circles replaced the earlier design’s angular shapes throughout.
“These soft, moon-like shapes fill the optics of this watch,” explains Armin Strom co-founder Claude Greisler. “Look closely and you will see a half-moon-shaped plate sharing the watch’s lower level with the mechanical elements, while a full moon-shaped subdial sits atop it.”
Conclusion: Armin Strom succeeds on its own terms with its first feminine watch as it avoids the all-too common watch design trap of simply adding gemstones to a smaller version of an existing model.
Armin Strom offers two Lady Beat models. One with a white dial and the other with a black dial.
Price: 16,900 CHF (about $18,600)
Specifications: Armin Strom Lady Beat
Movement: Automatic caliber ALA20, high-quality décor, 25,200 vph, seventy-hours of power reserve.
Case: 38mm by 11.65mm steel, sapphire crystal and case back with anti-reflective treatment. Water-resistance to 30 meters.
Dial: Offset in white or black with hand-finished steel hands.
Strap: Delivered with a bi-material rubber and Alcantara in satin white or black, and double-fold clasp in stainless steel.
Price: Starting at 16,900 CHF (about $18,600)