Manufacturer: Arc de Triomphe (View all products by Arc De Triomphe)
Model: Chateau Bridle (View all Chateau Bridle reviews)
Category: English Bridles
Purchase: I bought this bridle from www.horsetackco.com for $330, no shipping charges and no tax. I would highly recommend buying one from this company- the cost was at least $50 than I could find anywhere else, and the customer service was simply outstanding.
Likes: I work in a high quality tack store, and have seen many different bridles come and go. This is hands down the most beautiful bridle that I have ever seen. It screams quality, with very tight stitching and beautiful Herm Sprenger buckles that look like they were made to go on an expensive leather bracelet. The ivory piping is bold enough to attract attention, yet subtle enough to remain classy. I especially love how the flash attachment on the noseband is convertible- if your horse does not need it, the whole thing comes off, loop and all. Mine also came complete with calfskin covered reins, which are lovely on the hands. The Arc de Triomphe logo (what a surprise, its the Arc de Triomphe) is stamped into the leather on the headpiece, just visible enough so that you know it is a quality piece but not gaudy like the plastic or metal pieces on some of the other high-end bridles. The crownpiece is stylishly designed, which you can't see in any of the pictures online, and looks stunning on a horse.
Dislikes: This isn't really a dislike, but they do run a little large- my typical Thoroughbred fits a cob size, though he is horse in most other brands. You can get measurements online at www.mortack.com. Also, where the convertible flash attachment loop attaches to the noseband there is a small bump on the inside of the noseband. This is again not really a dislike, more of a interesting detail worth noting, and the "bump" is padded a bit extra so I don't think it would be a problem.
Quality: The leather quality is simply gorgeous. From the moment your hands touch this bridle you will know that it is made with simply the best. What less would you expect from a top French leather company? Not a stitch out of place, soft, cushy padding, and leather that is so supple that I can wrap the brand new cheekpieces around my little finger. This is the kind of bridle that looks as though it will outlast quite a few horses. The calfskin reins, as well, are beautiful and soft in your hands.
Summary: Overall, I would recommend this bridle to anyone who wants a serious quality dressage bridle for an affordable price. If I had not known the price, I would have thought that it cost easily twice the amount I paid for it. I have a hunter/jumper bridle that cost me around $600 to buy, and the ADT Chateau looks ten times as nice.
Usefulness Rating: 3 out of 5.
8 reader(s) voted.
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