INTRODUCING: Piaget’s Dragon and Phoenix watches for 2024
The watchmaker is celebrating the coming year of the Wood Dragon with a new cycle of timepieces dedicated to the mythical creature.
A dozen years ago, Piaget launched a small capsule collection themed around the 2012 Lunar New Year’s zodiac animal – the Dragon. The line gave Piaget the opportunity to derive a new artistic style around this and other Chinese zodiac animals. Each year since, Piaget has introduced watches featuring artistic crafts dedicated to the Chinese New Year.
The next Lunar Year will again be the Year of the Dragon, and Piaget has leveraged this last dozen years’ experience to create a wider capsule series themed around the mythical Dragon and its paired counterpart, the phoenix. This includes high-jewellery watches, made-to-order jewellery cuff watches, as well as brooches and earcuffs.
The Piaget Polo Emperador Tourbillon
We’ll focus on the timepieces, one of which is a stunning Polo Emperador Tourbillon watch decorated with gemstones and an engraved dragon whose tail starts at the lower left lug and snakes around the entire case, bezel, and dial, with the dragon’s head on the right side of the dial where the time-telling display rests. The rose gold dragon, micro-rotor, and the small seconds ring around the tourbillon carriage perfectly match the case and bezel.
The remainder of the watch is completely set with brilliant-cut sapphires and diamonds, including the sides of the bezel and case. Using a snow setting, Piaget has ensured that every millimetre of the watch is set with a precious stone, using hundreds to cover the entire watch and going from clear diamonds around the dragon’s head to vivid blue sapphires around the top left lug, like a midnight sky.
The 46.5mm watch is limited to just eight pieces and is powered by Piaget’s ultra-thin 1270P automatic tourbillon movement, at just 5.5mm thick and offering autonomy of up to 42 hours. With its off-centre display, large tourbillon, and visible micro-rotor on the dial, it’s a highlight of this dragon-themed capsule.
The Piaget Altiplano Dragon Zodiac
Three Altiplano models have been created with a few different enamel techniques by one of the industry’s finest, Anita Porchet. There are two 38mm Altiplano Zodiac references, one in white gold featuring a purple dragon and the other in pink gold with a flaming red phoenix. Purple is a royal colour in Chinese tradition, and this particular cloisonné and miniature enamel dragon is seen on the dial flying among mother-of-pearl clouds that are carefully carved. The details of the dragon are further enhanced by gold engraving.
The Phoenix watch features the mythical bird spreading her wings in the sky, with its iconic long tail plumage in bold red and flaming orange hues. The phoenix soars in the sky, depicted by carved mother-of-pearl clouds and cloisonné enamel, along with micro-engraving on the plumage of the figure. The bezel of the Altiplano watch is set with 68 brilliant-cut diamonds, with Piaget’s logo on the dial and a two-hand display for the time. The watches are in limited editions of 38 pieces each and are powered by Piaget’s 430P manual-winding movement.
In addition, the 41mm model also has a paillonné enamel dial – applying translucent coats of enamel over sheets of gold for bright, striking colours – with an incredibly detailed engraved gold dragon clutching a black opal fireball in its claw. The dragon is depicted on a starry night sky with glowing lines that shine out from the opal. Like its smaller Altiplano models, it also features a row of brilliant-cut diamonds on the bezel. It’s limited to just eight pieces globally.
Phoenix High Jewellery Watch
Two jewellery watches are also available in white or pink gold, with hand-engraved gold bracelets using a Décor Palace finishing and a bezel in the style of a phoenix. The engraved mythical bird is set with marquise- and brilliant-cut diamonds and rubies on the white gold model, while the rose gold version features diamonds of both cuts. The dials of both models are in white mother-of-pearl. These two 32mm watches are limited to just eight pieces each and equipped with Piaget’s 430P ultra-thin, hand-wound movements.
Dragon and Phoenix High Jewellery Cuff Watches
For this Lunar Year, Piaget is also presenting two made-to-order jewellery cuff watches with dragon and phoenix designs. The dragon cuff watch is fringed in onyx with a mix of baguette-, marquise-, and brilliant-cut diamonds and holds a black opal cabochon. A diamond-set watch dial rests just below the chin of the dragon’s jaw.
The phoenix cuff watch features a hand-engraved white gold phoenix bird set with pink rubies, pink sapphires, and cobalt spinels in round- and marquise-cuts with an extravagant pink feather and a rubellite cabochon under which resides the watch dial. These two cuff watches can be customised to a client’s preference, depending on the type of stones they like.
The capsule collection is one of the most comprehensive any watch brand has ever produced for a specific season and demonstrates how deeply Piaget has dived into this culture for a stunning collection. Head to a boutique to check out the watches today.
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