Satin-effect calfskin strap or alligator-skin strap
Pink, ruby, white, light blue, dark blue, gold or skeleton
Scratch resistant sapphire crystal
< 30 metres
24mm, 34mm, 36mm or 38mm
£10,000 - £60,000
There’s something about the Piaget Altiplano collection that commands the attention of a room. If there is truly such a thing as a dress watch, these are the best of the best. They are not very big on the wrist, they are thin without feeling cheap or flimsy, and are the embodiment of elegance.
Piaget first established its reputation for high-class watches in 1957, when they created the world’s thinnest mechanical movement, which is known as caliber 9P. Their Altiplano collection premiered in 1988 and has remained nearly identical in terms of design.
Most people know Piaget for their ultra-thin, sleek dress watches, and the Altiplano collection is certainly the epitome of this design. With the incorporation of white and rose gold for the ladies’ and men’s models, the Altiplano collection adds a touch of class to any wearer.
The Altiplano collection is one of Piaget’s largest collections and features a huge variety of watch faces, which we’ll call dials for the sake of this review. By far, their most popular models are the more ‘plain’ variants, though there’s nothing plain about them. These include the GOA29112 and GOA31114, which are ultra-thin, mechanical, and come in white gold and rose gold, respectively.
These watches count time with an hour and minute hand, and feature double stripes at 12, 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10, with single stripes for the remaining digits. If you’re after something more extravagant, you could opt for the GOA43120. This automatic watch is self-winding and comes in rose gold. Part of the inner mechanism is visible through the face, making this a watch for folks who want something eye-catching.
Piaget also offers a limited series as part of their Altiplano collection. The GOA44075, GPA44076, and GOA44053 are all a stunning navy blue. The first two feature the same dial minimal dial design that the Altiplano collection is known for, while the third features an off-center hour and minute counter, as well as a unique tourbillon carriage. These two features form the figure eight, which is Piaget’s signature.
The Altiplano collection features some of the thinnest cases that Piaget has ever created. Measuring at a minuscule 6mm, the Altiplano collection feels weightless on your wrist. As we mentioned earlier, this collection is one of the broadest that Piaget has ever created, and as such, there is a lot of variety.
The most basic cases in this collection are made from white and rose gold. There are no diamonds embedded within them, which gives them a much sleeker, professional look. These watches are quite understated, and Piaget’s contemporary interpretation of one of their vintage models.
It does not get more extravagant than that, and the Altiplano collection’s most lavish cases have bezels that are embedded with diamonds. Still, these diamond-embedded watches are no chunkier than their more plain counterparts – they merely add a heightened level of elegance. The visible inner mechanisms on some of the Altiplano watches are embedded with diamonds as well and are probably the most extreme in the collection.
The wearability is extremely consistent across the Altiplano collection. All of these watches measure at an ultra-thin 6mm in thickness. Each of the straps is very thin as well, with the only variation being the material that they are made from, as well as their color.
This collection features three different types of movement across all of its units, with the most common being the legendary 1203P ultra-thin self-winding calibre movement, which is only 3mm thick. Several watches also house Piaget’s 430P ultra-thin hand-wound manufacture calibre, as well as their self-winding 1200D movement, which also measures in at a record-breaking 3mm.
All of the watches in the Altiplano collection are extremely comfortable to wear and feel weightless on the wrist. The back of the dials are also totally flat, so there’s no risk of discomfort from protrusions like screws. Since all of Piaget’s watches are produced individually, the carats and weight of each can vary ever so slightly. The difference is seldom noticeable, but it’s worth mentioning anyway.
Nearly all of the watches in the Altiplano collection are made with the Alligator strap type. These straps are made from the highest quality leather, and offer superior smoothness and softness, and feel like pure comfort on your wrists. The metals used to make these watches can weigh anywhere between 25g to 40g. This makes them some of the lightest watches on the market and is one of the reasons they are so popular.
All of Piaget’s watch straps are made with hypoallergenic lining, so you won’t need to worry about allergic reactions when wearing one of them. The seams are hand-stitched, and the edges are folded, embodying the high standards that Swiss quality is defined by. Piaget has always made it clear that technological innovation is at the forefront of their priorities, and they have developed over 25 ultra-thin self-winding mechanical movements for their various collections, including Altiplano.
Of course, when discussing premium quality, handcrafted watches, variations in price are to be expected. For Piaget’s most standard Altiplano watch, you can expect to pay around £2,011 (or $2,507). This can vary depending on where you purchase the watch from, and whether or not you decide to have it shipped to your location. The top line priced exclusive models for the Piaget Altiplano ladies watches is around £60,000, although there are a few high jewellery models priced on request, you would be looking at between £80-150,000 for these.
It’s important to keep in mind that all of the watches in the Altiplano collection are handcrafted and are made with some of the most valuable and rare materials out there. Most of the straps are made from Alligator leather and scales, which is extremely hard to come by, already making the watches extremely valuable. Then there are the diamonds that are embedded in some of the dials and cases, with some dials being totally covered, which would obviously cause the value to skyrocket.
Review: Piaget Altiplano
If you’re looking for a watch that adds premium elegance with optimum comfort for any occasion, then look no further than Piaget’s Altiplano collection. Renowned for providing the thinnest and lightest watches in the premium market, an Altiplano timepiece is sure to bring many compliments.
Great dial variety and design
Available in self-winding, hand-winding and quartz models