So, you got yourself a nice suit — an Armani suit.
Now, you need a watch to go with it, right? There are many fantastic dress watch options that fit the bill, but you can now go full brand consistency with a Giorgio Armani watch to match that high-end suit. Yes, Armani is the latest fashion brand to break into high horology — in a sense. It's turned to one of Switzerland's most respected independent brands to make its watches: Parmigiani Fleurier.
Among watch enthusiasts, there's a deep skepticism toward so-called "fashion watches," those cheap watches intended as fashion accessories rather than to be appreciated for the qualities that make watches uniquely collectible. Emporio Armani watches are a perfect example. But just as the Giorio Armani suits are on another tier from its other brands, these are no Emporio Armani watches.
That name on the dial might meet skepticism from enthusiasts, but even those snobs will have to acknowledge that the new Giorgio Armani 11 collection watches represent serious horology.
That's because they're made by a company with unassailable watchmaking cred. Parminiani performs every aspect of production from intricate movements to handcrafted components for watches under its own name, as well as making movements for other respected names from Hermes to Richard Mille. (They even literally make watches worn by royalty.)
The Giorgio Armani 11 watches are made entirely by Parmigiani. They're essentially Parmigiani watches with Giorgio Armani branding on the dial — and some touches meant to nod to tailoring like a dial motif reminiscent of stitching and hands ostensibly evocative of needles and/or scissors. The 11 o'clock marker being the only one rendered in Arabic numerals is a reference to Armani's Milan address.
Turn the watch over, and its caseback is signed "By Parmigiani Fleurier" and you can see a version of the brand's PF047 automatic movement through a sapphire crystal window — albeit with a rotor signed Giorgio Armani. These are not, however, existing Parmigiani watches simply rebranded. That would be lazy. No, with a moon phase complication at 6 o'clock and a 39.5mm cushion shaped case, this kind of feels like a new collection from Parmigiani.
But they are, at least in name, Giorgio Armani watches — not a collab or the like. It's a little bit of a challenge to watch enthusiasts to put the name of a fashion label on their wrist, but therein lies this watch's contrarian edge — and, at the very least, gives it some talking points beyond what generally makes Parmigiani watches excellent.
The watches will surely cost well into five figures. It's more or less what you'd expect for something made to match Giorgio Armani four-figure suits, but exact prices are "on request." At launch, the collection comprises five models, three of which are in shades of gold and limited to 35 examples each and two models in steel, limited to 50 examples each. They're available at selected Giorgio Armani boutiques.