The Piaget Polo is celebrating its 45th anniversary this year. However, while the Polo name has survived, I’ve felt that the recent models have had little in common with the first Piaget Polo from 1979. Whenever Piaget showed us a new Polo model, I thought (and probably shared my thoughts with everyone who didn’t want to hear them) about those Polo models from the late 1970s and early 1980s. You know, the ones with the engraved horizontal lines — or “gadroons” — in the cases, dials, and bracelets. The only reminder of those in the modern Polo models is the texture of the dials. Well, that changes today with the Polo 79, marking the long-awaited return of the original Piaget Polo in full gold.

I must admit that my colleague Laurits (the Fratello Shop manager) and I are the only ones in the Fratello office who can go nuts over specific gold (and sometimes diamond-studded) watches from the 1970s and 1980s that we come across on platforms like Chrono24. The Piaget Polo models, including the rectangular ones, are always sure to spur some “that’s so awesome” or simple “hell yeah” remarks when we show them to each other.

Piaget Polo 79

A reintroduction of the original Piaget Polo

That’s also basically what I said when I saw this new Piaget Polo 79 based on its 45-year-old predecessor. Whereas Vacheron Constantin already made a similar move two years ago by relaunching the 222 in gold and could have also done so in steel, I think that for Piaget, there was only one way to do it. The Polo 79 comes in full 18K gold, weighs almost 200 grams, and measures 38mm wide and 7.45mm thick.

Piaget Polo 79 setting hands

And don’t make the mistake of thinking that the “high life” of the 1980s has become accessible for everyone. With a retail price of €81,500 (including 21% VAT), it’s for those who are truly living that lifestyle. In their various sizes and shapes, the Piaget Polo models from 1979 and the ’80s were never cheap.

Piaget caliber 1200P1

Today’s full-gold Piaget Polo 79 houses an ultra-thin automatic movement, something for which this Genevan watch manufacturer is famous. It’s Piaget’s caliber 1200P1, using a micro-rotor and offering 44 hours of power reserve. It only measures 2.25mm thick, enabling the Piaget Polo 79 to be just 7.45mm in total. The Piaget movement features beautiful finishing and decoration and is proudly on display through the sapphire window on the back. That said, the beauty for me is in the design of the Polo 79 and the feeling you’re just almost wearing a very heavy gold bracelet. I am happy that Piaget opted for a mechanical movement rather than a quartz caliber, though. It provides that all-important feeling of durability and longevity to this costly watch.

Yves Piaget — Image: Piaget/Christian Cogny

The high life

Piaget explains that Yves Piaget introduced the Polo in 1979 to meet the demand for luxury sports watches. Despite Piaget being famous for elegant timepieces, people also wanted a watch that was waterproof, shock resistant, and usable during sports. The Polo was the answer to that demand. In the end, the Piaget Polo was simply a (gold) watch for ballers, of course.

It was a watch for those who lived in high-society circles, where “practicing sports” meant upshifting in their Ferarri Testarossas or having an expensive seat at a Palm Beach polo game. The 1980s glam was frowned upon for a long time, but looking back at images and video footage from that era, it must have been quite a decade for those who enjoyed the high life.

Appreciation for a 1980s icon

Today’s glam is different from that of the 1980s, so where does that position the Piaget Polo 79 in 2024? I believe that the appreciation for watchmaking craftsmanship is more present today than four decades ago. The Piaget Polo in gold is no longer just a piece to show off status or wealth. It’s now also a watch for those who want to enjoy the finer things in life, such as Haute Horlogerie by Piaget.

Piaget Polo 79 case only

The caliber 1200P1 is just one aspect of watchmaking, but the construction of the case and bracelet are nothing short of impressive as well. Lastly, everything is crafted from 18K gold, including the case, bracelet, dial, hands, and crown. Many will perceive this as gaudy or blingy, but those who will buy this watch won’t lose any sleep over what others think.

Some thoughts

I love this new Polo 79, and I am glad that Piaget finally paid homage to the classic Polo model with the gadroons in the case, dial, and bracelet. Having gotten a chance to see it, hold it, and wear it today, I dare say that I don’t think I will see anything at Watches and Wonders 2024 that can top this Piaget Polo 79 for me.

I have been waiting for this re-edition for so long! Whipping out €81,500 is not an option for me, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t enjoy this Piaget Polo 79 from a distance. According to Piaget, the watch will be limited by production and the idea is to do 79 pieces at first only.

You can find the specifications of this new Piaget Polo 79 below. Let us know what you think about this revival in the comments, and visit Piaget’s website to see the rest of the Polo collection.

Watch specifications

Polo 79
18K yellow gold
Case Material
18K yellow gold
Case Dimensions
38mm (diameter) × 7.45mm (thickness)
Case Back
18K gold and sapphire
Paiget 1200P1 — automatic manufacture caliber with micro-rotor, 28,800vph frequency, 44-hour power reserve, 25 jewels, 2.35mm thickness
Water Resistance
18K yellow gold integrated bracelet
€81,500 (including 21% VAT)