Founded in 1955, Corum is a relatively young company, but in its 65 years of activity, it has gained an impressive reputation in the exclusive circle of luxury watchmaking club. The company was founded by Simone Reis and his nephew, René Bannwart, in the horology town of La Chaux-de-Fonds.
The first models debuted just one year later. It had an immediate and, if you think about it today, unbelievable success and recognition with its first icon: a watch lodged inside a $20 gold coin, which came out as a desperate measure.
The problem was that the case manufacturer could not deliver the cases the company needed for its first exhibit in Geneva, which would have been a disaster. And the duo of entrepreneurs, with this radical and innovative idea, managed to rescue the situation and ensured that the company had plenty of notoriety.
After this haphazard beginning, the company managed to expand and launch other collections. Corum’s production since the beginning was of a very high standard, often in limited editions (like the uber-precious "World Premier” series, featuring tourbillons and minute repeaters), and managed to attract a niche following of loyal clients.
The company survived quite well the quartz crisis and introduced new models, some of which are still manufactured today. But in 2000, the owners sell the company to an American investor, Severin Wunderman, who dies just eight years later, followed after two years by René Bannwart himself. In 2013 the Corum brand was acquired by the Chinese Citychamp Watch & Jewelry Group, the owner of another historical brand, Eterna.
The Corum brand is famous for some historical models produced since the launch of the company. Apart from the Coin Watch, which is still sought after by watch fans worldwide, the most iconic model is for sure the Admiral’s Cup.
This collection is composed of watches dedicated to the famous sailing race and displaying a marine theme, which is characterized by its dodecagonal-sided case. This series is made by different versions, from the time-only to the chronographs to the highly-complicated versions.
Another very famous line is the Bubble, introduced in 1980 as a development of a diver watch. The Bubble is renowned for its characteristic feature: a glass which seems blown, creating a bubble, and a very curvy one as well, with its 8 mm of thickness, making it a distinctly different timepiece as well. Corum reintroduced the watch in its lineup in 2015, and today represents one of its biggest sellers.
The Golden Bridge is instead an exquisite watch collection. Its main claim to fame is the intricately detailed linear movement, which seems to float in mid-air, supported only by the gold bridge, which gives the name to this watch.
1 - Coin Watch line
The Coin Watch is - if you pass us the expression - the “bacon-saver” of the company, so it has to be noted for its ingenuity, and why not, aesthetic quality.
The idea behind it was (and is) very simple and effective. A beautiful gold or silver watch that attracts attention and brings a smile on the onlooker who gets the joke and exclaims in his head, “how nice.” You will find several editions and versions of the Gold Coin watch, made in gold or silver, using different kinds of coins as the base, and mounting either a quartz-based or a mechanical caliber.
2 - Admiral’s Cup line
The Admiral’s Cup of today - renamed Admiral - is a “sport-chic” timepiece. This is a bit different from the luxury sports watches we all know, more focused on the elegant aspect, making it an excellent choice for an all-rounder with a marine vibe. Its most notable feature is the colorful pennants depicted on the dial marking the hours and the dodecagonal-edged case.
The collection is vast and varied and includes a lot of choices, spanning from the simple timekeeping functions to the more sporty, like the chronograph, to the most esoteric, like the tides calculator.
3 - Golden Bridge Line
This revolutionary watch made its debut in 1977, created by the master watchmaker Vincent Calabrese. It is a watch of exceptional purity, with a simple bar stretching from 12 to 6, and the movement is mounted linearly following it. It is skeletonization in its most perfect and rarefied form.
The timepiece was initially composed of just 45 parts and made a considerable impression on watch lovers at the time. Today it has been redesigned with new cases and shapes but is still as impressive as it was, with the sapphire glass revealing its beauty and craftsmanship from all angles.
4 - Bubble line
The Bubble line is a sort of Swatch for the affluent. Do not get us wrong, but this kind of inspiration is there. It is bold and unconventional, and it is made for an unconventional use. The bubble effect of the thick glass makes the design of the dial stand out and look enlarged, hypnotically so.
The variety of sizes, from the smallest to the huge, make the Bubble a perfect fit for every kind of wrist, and the dials, sometimes designed by famous artists, creatives, and different personalities, are always a surprise that brings a smile to the lips.
if you are a drummer and you are in search of a timepiece that is made just for you, then here it is.
Presented in a limited edition, the Corum Paiste features a dial made by the iconic cymbal-maker itself - and we are quite sure that it would sound like one if ever used to this extent! As it is placed under the famous bubble, though, it looks even more impressive: the sapphire glass works as a loupe, so you can clearly check the craftsmanship of the tiny cymbal.
Its black and gold color combination is also very nice-looking and gives to this watch a character that cannot be denied. As every Bubble watch, it is also water-resistant to 100 meters.
Jul 2019 - The 13th edition of the “Siam Paragon Watch Expo 2019” presented new collections and innovations from more than 180 brands spilling out into the mall from its Watch Galleria zone. And VIPs flooded the premises to exhibit the most glam timepieces. The actor Warintorn “Grate” Panhakarn showed off Corum’s Admiral AC-One 45 Double Tourbillon sports watch, with its signature dodecagonal bezel surrounding the dial with nautical pennants on the flange.
May 2019 - "The Golden Bridge collection is exquisite and elegant; the Admiral represents vibrancy and sportiness; other Corum watches with unique design features, such as those with a barrel shape, possess all of these key features. There are so many choices to use Corum watches to interpret different fashion styles, and I appreciate all the individual styles they have to offer".
These are the words of Hu Bing, a renowned Chinese actor, and model, who has become the last Corum’s Global Ambassador. Mr. Hu Bing's pursuit of excellence in his career and continuous breakthroughs in challenging himself was precisely the best interpretation of the maison’s persistent progress in fine watchmaking, so it was a natural choice. Mr.Hu has completed a photoshoot for the company’s 2019 Advertising Campaign, curated by none other than one of the most praised young Chinese photographers, Jumbo Tsui.
Current Most Popular Models
As you can see, Corum watches are both elegant and unconventional. They represent a sort of very confident choice, with their particular design that does not stand unnoticed. As such, only the most die-hard watch fanatics will really notice the watch, which can be both a blessing and a curse. But if you are into this mood, the Corum timepieces will represent the perfect choice to play the black sheep - or the white fly, if you prefer.
The Coin Watch, in its different iterations, is one of the most tranquil and dressy but does not lose this spirit of playfulness that is present among every timepiece from this maison. As a note, it has graced the wrist of several US Presidents. One of them, Lyndon Johnson, wore it when he swore as a President of the USA. His model was almost unique, as it bore a bas-relief of his profile on the back of the watch.
The Admiral collection, in its various versions, is the perfect daily beater with a nautical vibe, showing both elegance and sportiness in equal measure. More, the complicated models are a feast for the eyes.
The Golden Bridge takes you back to the exquisite tradition of luxury horology. It represents an unconventional choice for a uber-dressy watch with which you would enthrall whoever you meet. It is this elegant, and this distinguished.
The Bubble is loud and playful and is made for entertaining yourself and others as well. Its soft, rounded shape evokes sympathy, and the price is quite affordable as well. So, it is a sort of terrific combination, which ensures that if you buy one, it will probably get a lot of wrist time.
Current Approximate Price List By Line/Model
The Coin Watch line
The Coin Watch line is a classic line of the maison. It is exceptionally dress-oriented, as it features a single coin in gold or silver, mounted inside a minimal case, usually made in yellow gold.
The movements can be either quartz-based or mechanical, and the coin you may find on the dial and the back varies so that you will find versions for men and ladies as well. The most common men’s references are based on the US $20 “Double Eagle” coin.
There is also a rectangular edition of the Coin Watch featuring a small gold ingot instead.
type: dress watch
material: gold, silver
The quartz-based ladies' versions of the Coin Watch, featuring smaller coins, can be found from around $2,000 onwards. The first men’s watches start from approximately $3,000.
Mechanical versions start from around $5,000 and reach as high as $20,000 for the rarest coins.
The silver versions are somewhat less common than the gold ones, so they cost a bit more, starting from around $6,500.
The Admiral line
The Admiral is an elegant sports watch that sits squarely in the middle between real luxury sports and dress timepieces. This collection has represented one of the best-sellers of the company. It still is much appreciated, thanks to its particular theme and the wide variety of sizes and models (so, it is suitable for men and ladies as well).
As it is on the market for a long time, it is almost effortless to find many second-wrist references at discounted prices, especially since the company offered it also with quartz-based movements.
type: luxury sports watch
material: stainless steel, gold, diamonds, titanium, aluminum, bronze
functions: date/day, power reserve, world timer, chronographer, minute repeater, tourbillon.
The quartz-based timepieces of this collection start from very affordable values: around $700 for a good model, while a mechanical one would start from $1,300.
The versions with a chronograph start from around $3,700. The same happens for the GMT-equipped models. The Seafender, the diver version of the Admirals Cup, begins around the $4,000. This is also the starting price for the skeletonized models.
The Regatta models, with a countdown function, start from around $4,200. This is also the price for the most affordable gold-cased models, and also, for the Legend models, with their distinctive bezel studded with little diamonds.
The timepieces mounting a tides indicator complication start from around $4,500.
Around $5,000, you also find several limited editions of the watch, as well as the intriguing Wood editions, with the dial made to imitate the planks of a ship.
As you enter into the higher complications, the annual calendar starts from $7,000 and the Worldtimer from around $10,000. The most affordable tourbillon-equipped models begin from about $15,000.
The top of the line is represented by the Minute Repeater Tourbillon, chiming it at $225,000 and upwards. The Minute Repeater alone comes at a more affordable $70,000.
The Golden Bridge line
Available for men and ladies, the Golden Bridge is an impressive collection of the maison, and it is unique for the minimal design of its movement.
The caliber is linear, and it is shown in its glory by the open case.
It is a dress watch in its purest sense: exquisite, and undoubtedly, impressive-looking.
You will find rectangular, tonneau, and round-shaped versions.
type: dress watch
material: gold, diamonds
This collection of dress watches start from around $10,000 for the most straightforward references, and climbs up to over $90,000 for the most particular ones, featuring intricate hand-carved bas-reliefs and diamonds set on the bezel.
The average price for the skeletonized versions and the automatic versions lies around the $30,000 mark.
The Bubble line
The Bubble line is a luxury sports watch collection featuring some bold and quirky designs, made by notable designers and creatives, along with more subdued versions. It is playful and offers an impressive array of different references (it is somewhat difficult to find two identical Bubbles), both quartz and mechanical based. As the size varies by much, there is a Bubble, which is perfect for every wrist and every mood.
type: luxury sports watch
material: stainless steel, gold, diamonds, titanium
functions: date/day, chronograph, GMT, skeletonized.
The Bubble collection proposes watches with different dials, from the most straightforward to the most eclectic. The wristbands range from rubber to leather and offer this timepiece a wide range of customization options so to suit every mood and occasion.
The smaller, quartz-based versions made for ladies start from around $1,000, while the quartz chronographs begin from approximately $1,500. This is also the price for the first automatic versions.
The GMT-equipped versions start from around $1,900.
The skeletonized versions start from around $4,000.
The diver is quite rare and goes for around $5,000.
The rarer precious metal versions are more costly. The bimetallic versions start from $7,000, and the full gold versions from around $14,000.
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