People often complain that watch companies don’t pay enough attention to women, and don’t make enough women’s models. That is a valid complaint, but men’s watches drive the industry, and most of the watches purchased each year are men’s models.
This means that women’s models are slow to develop, and makers have a tendency to show less innovation and instead just use the same movements over and over with a bit of dressing to make them appear “new.”
That’s changing, slowly and more companies are starting to make smaller movements for women’s models while still including interesting features and designs.
One watch that caught my eye (several watches, really) is the new limited edition Altiplano line from Piaget.
There are several different models in the line, though they all share the same basic design and look. The prices and materials can range considerably, however, though they’re all fairly expensive. And limited.
The Altiplano models are offered in varying case widths – 34, 38 and 40 mm. You’ll be able to buy a time-only model, or one with a date complication.
One of the models has a manually wound movement, and the case comes in at an ultra- thin 2.1 mm. The automatic and quartz versions are a bit thicker, coming in at a relatively chubby 6 mm or so.
All of the models share the same basic look – a simple, clean face of a single color, though it is graduated across the face. Hour markers are slim and surprisingly long. The baton hands are strictly no frills.
The models I’ve seen come in green, blue and pink, though there is also a black model in the men’s version. All have a matching leather strap.
Materials are red gold and white gold. You will not find a stainless steel version of the Altiplano, however.
As these are limited edition watches, they’re also priced rather steeply. My last post was about a surprisingly affordable watch; these are, unfortunately, not quite so affordable.
Prices for the Piaget Altiplano vary a bit, but in general, they run from about $17,900 to $28,500. I realize that it’s a lot to ask for someone to pay an amount of money that would buy a nice car for a watch, and particularly one that isn’t loaded with diamonds.
On the other hand, these are surprisingly attractive watches, and a reminder that one need not go overboard in the design department to come up with a watch that looks nice. Too often these days, I see watches that are “overdesigned” and that means lots of clutter on the face, and as many diamonds on the dial, bezel and bracelet as they can manage to squeeze in there.
Sometimes, less is more, and in the case of the Piaget Altiplano, they seem to have rather elegantly made that point. You won’t find this one for sale just anywhere, so you might want to visit the Piaget Website to learn more about it.
This one, unfortunately, is out of my price range. Were it not, I think I’d be lining up to buy it on all three colors.