By Osheen Arakelian
A modern-day embodiment of sheer purity and elegance, the all-new Piaget Altiplano Chronograph is yet another timeless marvel that exudes all the wonder that makes Piaget so great. For the first time in Piaget’s long illustrious history, the emblematic Altiplano line welcomes a major complication, a new in house movement: the hand-wound chronograph that’s loved and cherished by Haute Horlogerie connoisseurs around the world.
The reason why is it a strange choice of complications is because Piaget has opted to utilise the hand-wound chronograph movement into a slender, understated case. However, with Piaget’s great pedigree in producing ultra-thin timepieces, the new hand-wound chronograph has been utilized perfectly inside the simple and contemporary case. The new in-house movement, named the 883P calibre is, as you would expect another record breaker for Piaget measuring an amazing 4.65mm for the hand-wound flyback chronograph movement, and a ridiculous 8.24mm for its precious receptacle.
Although it may sound simple enough to develop a thinner hand-wound chronograph calibre, it most definitely is not, taking 2 years of development to bring this masterpiece to life. Developed in La Côte-aux Fées, the birthplace of Piaget, the new calibre is now a world record holder in terms of both its ultra-thin calibre and case. This is seen throughout its development from the cannon-pinion that’s only 0.12mm to the chronograph gear finger measuring only 0.06mm.
The end result is a brand new ultra-thin calibre that has a 50-hour power reserve that resembles all the trademarks of Piaget. Moreover, the chronograph is controlled by a column-wheel that’s responsible for coordinating all its phases, and by a vertical coupling-clutch system ensuring perfect precision. The movement is also beautifully finished with circular Côtes de Genève, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges, engraved mainplate with the Piaget coat-of-arms and also blue screws.
Moving on from the wonderful movement to the case, Piaget has kept things as thin an elegant as possible. The case measures an overall size of 41mm in diameter and only 8.24mm thick. The detailed movement is visible through a sapphire crystal display caseback showing off the amazing detail work of the master craftsmen at Piaget. The case is available in 2 variants, an 18K pink gold case or 18K white gold set with 56 brilliant-cut diamonds (approximately 1.8cts).
The new Piaget displays a timeless yet elegant character that has been developed with a deliberate pared-down aesthetic inherent in the Altiplano line, while simultaneously taking on the challenge of a complication whose very functions call for an elaborate display.
The new Piaget Altiplano Chronograph is a wonderful new addition to the Altiplano range of timepieces from Piaget and a true testament to Haute Horlogerie. For more info, please visit piaget.com
Osheen Arakelian – Contributing Editor
Drawing on a lifelong love of horology and a more recent introduction to appreciation of fine whisky, Osheen brought the two together with watch & whisky. He is proprietor of the site, which covers everything related to watches and whisky. In between completing a degree in commercial law and supporting a rich social life, he is out and about attending all the latest watch and whisky events Sydney has to offer. His passion has also taken him around Australia attending a number of events and he hopes to continue his career in the watch industry on a more serious level after he graduates. Read his articles here.