Piaget Altiplano Watch Collection 2011

Standing tall at an altitude of 3,500 metres above sea-level, the majestic Altiplano straddling four countries –Argentina, Chile, Peru and Bolivia. Its striking beauty has also made this high plateau one of the most impressive natural areas on the planet.

Snow-capped peaks, mountain lakes, a harsh climate, silence… this spectacular setting is not so very far removed from the daily life of the inhabitants of the high Jura valleys around a century ago. And it was indeed at the heart of one of these valleys, in the company workshops in La Côte-aux-Fées, that a line of legendary ultra-thin watches was born: the Altiplano models. The purity of the backdrop of the high plains of the Andes cordillera naturally inspired the creators of the world’s slimmest mechanical automatic watch.

Ultra-thin watchmaking is an adventure that began over 50 years ago for the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget. In early 1957 and after several years of fruitful research and development, the watchmakers in La Côte-aux-Fées presented a mechanical movement measuring just 2 mm thick. It was named 9P, because it was a 9-ligne movement in watchmaking jargon. It was slender, light and refined.

The first watches equipped with the 9P calibre were launched on the market at what was then called the Basel Watch Fair. They in fact heralded a revolution. This new launch caused such a stir that the Piaget brothers soon realised what a treasure they had in the 9P. It was upon this movement and its successive versions, including the 12P automatic movement presented at the Basel Fair in 1960 as the world’s thinnest automatic movement, that the Maison Piaget built its reputation.

Above and beyond the technical feats involved, the development of ultra-thin movements was to lead to a complete aesthetic upheaval. Freed from all constraints, Piaget watches were thus ready to offer a watchmaking interpretation of the fanciful, rebellious spirit of the 1960s. Alongside the extravagant watches that were much in vogue, the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget also pursued its line of extremely pure ultra-thin models: an inimitably slender case, an understated dial, and subtly stylised hands.

On these exceptional creations, luxury is hinted at, while pared down to essentials: a supremely technical movement, precious metal, and a clear-cut design. For half a century, Piaget’s consummate art of using these three components has enabled it to write some of the finest pages in the field of ultra-thin watchmaking.

One can indeed rightly speak of historical legitimacy, since the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget has consistently broken new ground in the highly technical sphere of ultra-thin watchmaking. Out of a total of 29 movements developed by Piaget, 17 are ultra-thin. Of this long and prestigious lineage, two of the most outstanding recent calibres are the 430P (2.1 mm thick) created in 1998 and the 830P (2.5 mm) created in 2007.

This expertise in ultra-thin movements has also given rise to complicated calibres, including the world’s thinnest shaped tourbillon, 600P, as well as the 880P chronograph, 885P perpetual calendar and 1270P automatic tourbillon movements. In 2010, Piaget celebrated the 50th anniversary of the launch of its legendary 12P calibre by presenting the 1200P (hours and minutes) and 1208P (hours, minutes and small seconds), the world’s thinnest mechanical automatic movements at just 2.35 mm thick. Integrated within the new 43 mm Piaget Altiplano case, these movements thus represented a second record, this time for the thinnest watch in its category (5.25 mm).

First presented in 1998 under the name directly linked to the evocative and directly product-related name Altiplano, the ultra-thin Piaget models meet highly specific design codes. In addition to the extremely pure lines of the ultra-thin round or square cases, Piaget Altiplano watches are distinguished by pure dials, slender elongated hands and fine baton-shaped hour-markers or Roman numerals.

Thanks to a broad range of models, the Altiplano collection encompasses both masculine and feminine models, housing almost exclusively mechanical movements within cases crafted from precious metal and in some cases gem-set. In keeping with the Piaget tradition of ultra-thin watches, which are either classically inspired or introduced as concept watches – such as the Piaget Altiplano Double-Jeu and Piaget Altiplano fingerprint models – Altiplano watches also represent an opportunity to explore a number of skills such as the art of enamelling, skeleton-working, and gem-setting on skeletonised movements.

Acknowledged both for the competencies required to make it, and for its unique aesthetics, the Piaget Altiplano watch has won numerous prizes awarded by the public and professionals, including the Design Prize in the 2003 Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix.

In 2011, the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget is further enriching its Altiplano collection, which has become a brand icon, by presenting new releases that consolidate the line’s leadership position in the field of ultra-thin watches.

Piaget Altiplano 34 and 38 mm with pavé dial

Purity and elegance are two qualities that have become inseparably bound up with the Piaget Altiplano collection. As a sparkling celebration of the two areas of expertise that have earned Piaget its reputation – watchmaking and jewellery – the Maison presents a completely original pair of Piaget Altiplano watches. These two models measuring 34 and 38 mm in diameter vividly express the two-fold mastery characteristic of the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget: the art of jewellery-making, as well as recognised competence in the area of ultra-thin mechanical movements.

These two Piaget Altiplano watches are distinguished first and foremost by their impressive full-set dials, respectively adorned with 735 and 574 diamonds. Entirely crafted and gem-set within the Manufacture itself, they feature a harmonious circular gem-set motif, a technique calling for patient, meticulous care and which can only be achieved by the finest gem-setters. Twelve slender applied gold hour-markers are swept over by dauphine hands guaranteeing excellent readability while preserving a remarkably expressive aesthetic.

As part of this same determination not to disturb the strong impact of the circular gem-setting, the Piaget logo is placed beneath the crystal and not on the dial. Set with rows of 78 and 72 diamonds respectively, the bezels further reinforce the precious and elegant character of this exceptional twosome. A further touch of refinement is added by the black alligator strap fitted with a new pin buckle exclusive to the Piaget Altiplano collection, which picks up the bezel design and is set with a row of 23 diamonds.

Paying vibrant testimony to the gem-setting mastery cultivated by the Maison Piaget, these two dazzling Piaget Altiplano models are respectively set with 836 and 669 diamonds, totalling approximately 2.9 and 2.2 carats.

The absolute elegance of these two models is due not only to the quality of the gem-setting, but also to the finesse and purity of the lines of the white gold Piaget Altiplano case housing Calibre 430P.

Designed, developed and produced by the Manufacture de Haute Horologerie Piaget, this mechanical handwound movement is one of the slimmest in its category, at just 2.1 mm thick, and drives the hour and minute functions. Like all movements emerging from the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget, Calibre 430P is exquisitely finished, including with bridges that are bevelled and adorned with circular Côtes de Genève, a circular-grained mainplate and traditional blued screws. The white gold 34 and 38 mm cases are both water-resistant to 30 metres.

In presenting these two exclusive and refined timepieces, Piaget is introducing a “couples” offer – comprising a man’s model and a ladies’ model – stylishly synthesising the two recognised skills of the Manufacture within two Piaget Altiplano models epitomising absolute elegance.

Technical details

Ref. G0A36129, Piaget Altiplano, 38 mm
– 18-carat white gold case set with 78 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.7 cts)
– Fully-paved dial set with 735 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 2.1 cts), 18-carat white gold applied hour-markers, dauphine hands
– Manufacture Piaget 430P ultra-thin mechanical hand-wound movement
– Functions: hour, minute
– Movement thickness: 2.1 mm
– Casing dimension: 9’’’ (20.5 mm)
– Number of jewels: 18
– Frequency: 21,600 vph
– Approximately 40-hour power reserve
– Finishing: circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, blued screws
– 18-carat white gold pin buckle set with 23 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.06 cts)
– Black alligator leather strap

Ref. G0A36128, Piaget Altiplano, 34 mm
– 18-carat white gold case set with 72 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.5 cts)
– Fully-paved dial set with 574 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 1.7 cts), 18-carat white gold applied hour-markers, dauphine hands
– Manufacture Piaget 430P ultra-thin mechanical hand-wound movement
– Functions: Hour, minute
– Movement thickness: 2.1 mm
– Casing dimensions: 9’’’ (20.5 mm)
– Number of jewels: 18
– Frequency: 21,600 vph
– Approximately 40-hour power reserve
– Finishing: circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, blued screws
– 18-carat white gold pin buckle set with 23 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.04 cts)
– Black alligator leather strap

Piaget Altiplano 43 mm white gold with gem-set bezel

Materialising the quintessence of Piaget’s mastery in the domain of ultra-thin watchmaking, the Piaget Altiplano 43 mm – the double record-setting model launched in 2010 – now comes in an elegant version with a gem-set bezel.

One of the feats it represents is that of successfully setting 88 diamonds (approx 0.8 carats) on the bezel, while preserving the record slenderness of the 5.25 mm white gold case that makes it the thinnest automatic watch on the market. This result has been achieved by an ingenious construction, a flat sapphire crystal, tapering lugs and a multi-level dial. The discreet yet elegant gem-setting beautifully highlights the sleek lines of the bezel on this Piaget Altiplano 43 mm.

While the case is the thinnest in its category, the 2.35 mm thick calibre it houses is currently the thinnest mechanical automatic movement on the market. Conceived, developed and produced by the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget, Calibre 1208P combines the intrinsic qualities of an ultra-thin movement with remarkable technical performance and extreme reliability. Equipped with a 22-carat gold oscillating weight, this mechanical movement remarkable in every respect drives hours, minutes, and small seconds at 5 o’clock. It beats at a frequency of 21,600 vph and has an approximately 40-hour power reserve.

Finally, loyal to its tradition of extreme quality, the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget makes it a point of honour to treat this ultra-thin movement to meticulous finishing: in addition to the bevelled bridges adorned with Côtes de Genève, the circular-grained mainplate, the satin-brushed steel parts and the blued screws, Calibre 1208P features sunburst wheels and a dedicated index assembly bearing the P for Piaget like a secret signature. These refined details are visible through the sapphire crystal back of this white gold case that is water-resistant to 20 metres and teamed with a black alligator strap fastened by a pin buckle exclusive to the Piaget Altiplano collection.

With its exquisitely gem-set bezel, tapered lugs, pure dial and broad calibre – measuring 13 ¼ lignes, meaning 29.9 mm in diameter – endowed with fine finishes, this new Piaget Altiplano perfectly expresses the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget’s determination to dedicate its mastery of ultra-thin watchmaking to perfecting an elegant and precious timepiece.

Technical details

– Ref. G0A36138, 43 mm
– World’s thinnest automatic watch (5.25mm)
– 18-carat white gold case set with 88 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx 0.8 cts)
– Silver-coloured dial, black baton hour-markers, baton hands
– Manufacture Piaget 1208P ultra-thin mechanical self-winding movement
– World’s thinnest automatic movement (2.35 mm)
– Functions: hour, minute, small second (at 5 o’clock)
– Movement thickness: 2.35 mm
– Casing dimensions: 13 ¼ ’’’ (29.9 mm diameter)
– Number of jewels: 27
– Frequency: 21,600 vph
– Approximately 40-hour power reserve
– Finishing: circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, blued screws, sunburst-brushed wheels, 22-carat pink gold oscillating weight engraved with Piaget coat of arms
– 18-carat white gold pin buckle
– Black alligator leather strap

Piaget Altiplano 40 mm in pink gold with gem-set bezel

While the Piaget Altiplano collection is currently synonymous with ultra-thin models, it also incorporates specific and tangible identity codes that endow it with unique character: baton-type hands and hour-markers, along with a supremely pure dial, are the first signature features of this collection. The offset small seconds at 10 o’clock also enlivens certain Piaget Altiplano models.

Interpreted in pink gold and topped by a bezel set with 72 brilliant-cut diamonds totalling around 1 carat, the latest Piaget Altiplano 40 mm incorporates the entire set of these Altiplano codes. Understated, precious, pure and elegant, it merges mastery of extreme finesse with precious elegance, and thereby enriches a range already encompassing a number of accomplishments.

Its pink gold case houses ultra-thin Calibre 838P, a mechanical hand-wound movement designed, developed and produced by the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget. It drives the hours and minutes, small seconds at 10 o’clock, and is endowed with the meticulous finishing characteristic of all Piaget’s mechanical movements: bridges bevelled and adorned with circular Côtes de Genève, a circular-grained mainplate, and the traditional blued screws – all clearly visible through the sapphire crystal case-back. The pink gold case is water-resistant to 30 metres and teamed with a brown alligator strap complete with a matching pink gold buckle specifically designed for the Piaget Altiplano collection. This 40 mm Piaget Altiplano model with gem-set bezel is also available in a white gold version.

Technical details

Ref. G0A36118, 40 mm
– 18-carat pink gold case set with 72 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx.1 ct)
– Silver-coloured dial, black baton hour-markers, baton hands
– Manufacture Piaget 838P ultra-thin mechanical hand-wound movement
– Functions: hour, minute, small second (at 10 o’clock)
– Movement thickness: 2.5 mm
– Casing dimensions: 12’’’ (26.8 mm)
– Number of jewels: 19
– Frequency: 21,600 vph
– Approximately 62-hour power reserve
– Finishing: circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, engraved coat of arms, balance with blued screws, blued screws
– 18-carat pink gold pin buckle
– Brown alligator leather strap

Piaget Altiplano 34 mm pink gold with gem-set bezel

The Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget has chosen to treat one of its best-selling ladies’ models, the Piaget Altiplano 34 mm, to a delightful new face. Entirely in harmony with the inherent purity and understatement of the Piaget Altiplano collection, the Roman numerals on the pure new dial bring this model back in line with the most classic identity codes of the collection that has become an icon of elegance and extreme slenderness.

A matt white dial is graced with slim and elegant Roman numerals in the same restrained spirit as the batonshaped hour-markers on the masculine versions. This new feminine touch is enhanced by the small seconds subdial at 10 o’clock – a signature feature of Piaget’s mechanical hand-wound movements – surrounded by a circle of 28 diamonds (approx 0.1 carats), as well as the Piaget logo at 3 o’clock. The precious nature of this timepiece is further underscored by its bezel set with 72 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx 0.5 carats).

This resolutely feminine and refined new Piaget Altiplano 34 mm model beats to the cadence of Calibre 450P, an ultra-thin mechanical hand-wound movement. Designed, developed and produced by the Manufacture de Haute Horlogerie Piaget, this movement drives the hours, minutes and small seconds at 10 o’clock, while bearing the careful finishing characteristic of all mechanical Piaget movements: bridges bevelled and adorned with circular Côtes de Genève, a circular-grained mainplate, and the traditional blued screws.

The pink gold case is water-resistant to 30 metres and secured to the wrist by a white alligator leather strap fitted with an exclusive pin buckle in pink gold. This Piaget Altiplano 34 mm model with gem-set bezel is also available in a white gold version. An ultra-thin case, discreet gem-setting and a timeless new dial are doubtless set to propel this new Piaget Altiplano 34 mm model to the ranks of Piaget’s best-selling ladies’ watches.

Technical details

Ref. G0A36107, 34 mm
– 18-carat pink gold case set with 72 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.5 cts)
– White dial with copper coloured Roman numerals, small seconds counter at 10 o’clock set with 28 brilliant-cut diamonds (approx. 0.1 cts), baton hands
– Manufacture Piaget 450P ultra-thin mechanical hand-wound movement
– Functions: hour, minute, small second (at 10 o’clock)
– Movement thickness: 2.1 mm
– Casing dimensions: 9’’’ (20.5 mm)
– Number of jewels: 18
– Frequency: 21,600 vph
– Approximately 40-hour power reserve
– Finishing: circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, blued screws
– 18-carat pink gold pin buckle
– White alligator leather strap

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