Lebeau-Courally Tourbillon 1/1
Retail price: 195.000 €
Lebeau-Courally Tourbillon 1/1
The history of the brand
When we read about the histories of the legendary Haute Horlogerie brands, the story often goes the same - a prodigal watchmaker starts a small brand, his genius is recognized, and through years of hard work, dedication, and innovation, they manage to become the industry household name. All of this is very respectable, but sadly, a little predictable. Lebeau Courally offers a very different legacy, making this brand one of the most interesting watch manufacturers today.
Lebeau Courally is a Belgian watchmaker specialising in merging the tradition of hunting arms making with the art of fine watchmaking - not your average watch brand.
The brand was founded in 1865 by Auguste Lebeau, who was famous throughout Europe for creating the best bespoke hunting arms. Among his clientele, you could count the European royalty and the Russian Tsars. After his death in 1896, the company was taken over by Ferdinand Courally, a French businessman who expanded its reputation and clientele significantly, pivoting into luxury watches and the highest quality leather goods.
The brand’s watches are inspired by the heritage and the craftsmanship of its hunting arms. The signature features of Lebeau Courally watches include the clef de fusil, a spiral-shaped decoration on the left side of the case, the refined quadrillage, a checkered pattern on the crown, and the ring-shaped case, which takes inspiration from the shape of the barrel of a gun. The watches also use the same terminology as the arms, such as calibre, lever, platina, detent, balance or barrel.
Lebeau Courally is the only watchmaker in the world that brings together the world of arms making and watchmaking, which share a common history and an extreme level of precision and detail. The brand preserves the memory of the long historical relationship between the two crafts, which originated in the valleys of Neuchâtel in Switzerland and Liège in Belgium in the 17th century.
What makes the Lebeau-Courally watches popular?
Lebeau Courally’s exclusive clientele was the European aristocracy, the most distinguished and wealthiest people of the era, and there was a very good reason why they chose this Belgian manufacturer.
Their products have an aura of class and refinement that is incomparable to anything else on the market. The guns they made were excellent to the most minor detail - from the overall shape and polishing to the hand engraving and rigorous testing, everything was the definition of perfection. And this counts twice for their watches.
Since the manufacture makes only a small amount of timepieces each year, the quality control is incredible. Each watch is done with the utmost care and perfection, making each and every piece a true Magnum Opus.
All of this is very perceivable and makes the Lebeau Courally watches the ultimate status piece. Even people who have no idea what a tourbillon is and don't know anything about watchmaking will appreciate this timepiece. The aura of this model works like a magnet, attracting the eyes of those who are around it. That is if they’re ever lucky enough to see someone with this watch.
This gets us to the second desirability factor of this timepiece - the rarity. If you were ever to see someone wearing a watch from the Belgian watchmaker, consider yourself blessed. Their timepieces are some of the rarest a person can see. To obtain such a watch, one must be wealthy and well-connected.
For those reasons, the Lebeau Courally creations are considered a sort of holy grail for knowledgeable connoisseurs, the final destination and the crown piece of their collection. It’s a masterpiece that is recognized by the elite - the pinnacle of absolute wealth and prosperity.
Starting with the face of the watch, we can partially see the movement of this model through the skeletonized middle of the dial. The outer part is made in white, with gold Roman hour markers ranging from I to XI, while at 12 o’clock, the bold logo of the brand is visible, again made in black. The writing “Lebeau Courally” ranges from 1 o’clock to 2 o’clock, proudly showing the name of the manufacturer who’s behind this masterpiece. The hour and minute hands are made in gold as well, with the middle being luminescent, ensuring good visibility in low-light conditions.
Moving to the complications, probably the most prominent and beautiful is the breathtaking tourbillon at 9 o’clock, which also serves as a mount for the small second hand, creating a unique and mesmerizing effect. At 2 o’clock, we can notice a retrograde date display, while at 5 o’clock, the 5-day power reserve indicator is dominant.
The case of the watch matches the colour and material of the hour markers and hands, being made in 18k rose gold as well. Noticeably on the left side of the timepiece, we can clearly see the signature clef de fusil, which when placed in an upward position reveals the “No 1/1” writing. On the right side, the beautiful crown with the brand’s logo can be seen, again made in 18k rose gold.
When we turn the watch, the smooth back of the case can be seen. The unique feature of this watch is its openable case. This reveals a sapphire glass window, through which the intricate manual movement can be admired. Around the glass, you can see “Swiss Made 5ATM Au 18k”, the name of the brand, “Piece unique”, and Le Comte, pointing at the technical aspects and the rarity of this model.
The entire 43mm case is paired with a comfortable black alligator leather strap with a seamless 18k rose gold folding clasp that is in the shape of the brand’s logo.
The investment value of this 1/1 watch
The Lebeau-Courally Le Comte Tourbillon 1/1 Piece Unique is a remarkable watch that holds significant investment value. As a unique piece, it’s highly sought after by collectors and enthusiasts, which gives it the potential to increase its investment value. The watch’s rarity and the brand’s reputation for quality make it a valuable asset.
Investing in luxury watches, especially unique pieces like the Lebeau-Courally Le Comte Tourbillon 1/1, can be a profitable venture. The watch industry has seen a steady increase in the value of rare and limited-edition pieces, and this trend is expected to continue. The Lebeau-Courally brand is known for its perfectionist craftsmanship and attention to detail, which adds to the desirability and hence the value of their watches.
How it feels on the wrist & Why I love this watch
This timepiece is a real one-of-a-kind thing - and I'm not pointing at the fact that it’s a piece unique. What makes this watch really special is the incredible way it feels when you wear it.
Once you put this on your wrist, you are fully immersed in it. The 18k yellow gold case is quite heavy, but that is what you expect from such a large creation. The finishing is astonishing - when you look at it very closely, you can see all the handcrafted details, which give this model its unique soul. The manual movement is very reliable and the 5-day power reserve is great. I especially enjoy the alligator leather strap, which is even more comfortable than you could ever expect. The date window is convenient and quite easy to see considering its size. The brand really thought of everything when they created this.
What I love probably the most is the stunning openable case back. The versatility of that is simply amazing. When you have this watch on your wrist, the case is closed and the calming touch of the gold is constantly present on your skin. But when you take the timepiece off and open the back, you will see the beautiful inner workings of the movement.
I know many watches have open casebacks, but the way that this one is “hidden” makes this model so much more interesting and exciting. A true work of art in my opinion.
Model: Piece unique
Retail price: € 195.000
Year: Circa 2015
Case size: 43 mm
Case material: Rose Gold
Bracelet material: Crocodile strap
Water resistance: 30 meters
Condition: Very good unpolished condition.
Guarantee: We will provide you with an invoice and a 2-year guarantee issued under your name.