The Best Gold And Platinum Watches Released In 2022 — A. Lange & Söhne, Breguet, Rolex, And More
In the last few years, I’ve advocated for watches in precious metals. Certain steel sports watches have been hyped so much that they’ve become more expensive than their gold and platinum counterparts. That does not make any sense to me at all. Besides this “side effect” of the hype for steel luxury sports watches, I also like the warmth and heft of precious metals. Putting on my 220g Omega Speedmaster in solid 18K gold or my yellow gold Rolex Day-Date makes me even more aware that I am wearing something special compared to their steel counterparts (there’s no steel Day-Date, but let’s take my steel Datejust as a comparison, then).
It’s not that I don’t like steel watches. On the contrary, I love them, but sometimes gold or platinum adds something extra to the experience of wearing a nice watch. One of my friends, who is a goldsmith and watchmaker, also taught me a valuable lesson a long time ago. Unlike with steel watches, you can restore the case or bracelet of a gold watch in a way that it doesn’t show. Sure, they can laser weld steel cases to retain the original shape and dimensions upon refinishing, but it’s much easier to do with gold cases and bracelets.
In 2022, we saw quite a few nice gold watches come out. I already covered some of them in the article on my favorite watch releases of 2022, but let me add a few more gold and platinum watches here. To be clear, most of these watches are not massively hyped pieces, so their prices will still be higher than their steel counterparts (if they exist). Nevertheless, some may even be cheaper than the most popular steel watches on the parallel market. Here we go!
Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin
Not to go into repeat mode, but the Vacheron Constantin Historiques 222 and Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 16202OR are watches I mentioned in my previous article and are very close to one another. Both watches find their roots in the 1970s when classic watchmaking companies started to create sporty-looking steel watches instead of their (often) round watches in precious metals with leather straps.
Some of these classical pieces were rather complicated, while others just had two hands. Designers like Gérald Genta and Jörg Hysek decided to do things differently and came up with these luxury sports watches with integrated bracelets. On top of the “core” models in stainless steel, one could (and still can) find them in precious metals. To find out more about the Vacheron Constantin Historiques 222, click here, and read our coverage of the Royal Oak 16202 here.
The platinum Rolex Day-Date 128236
During the Watches and Wonders show in Geneva, Rolex showed us two new Day-Date models in platinum. They came in 36mm and 40mm sizes, both with the famous ice-blue dial that’s exclusive to platinum models. But you might be wondering what’s new since a platinum Day-Date has already been in the Rolex catalog for years. In the past, all the platinum Rolex Day-Date models came with a smooth bezel. Together with an ice-blue dial, it was an easy way to distinguish a white gold Day-Date from a platinum version. This year, however, Rolex made a drastic change by adding fluted bezels to its platinum models. Rolex also let us know that creating a fluted bezel from platinum is not an easy thing because of the properties of this material. The price of this watch is on request, but you can certainly expect something around €60K.
Perhaps my favorite new Rolex Day-Date, though, is the 36mm yellow gold 128238 on Sinara’s wrist in the photo above. This watch just features an updated dial, but it does look stunning. I know there’s little new or innovative about these watches compared to some other releases in 2022, but the classics are just hard to beat.
H. Moser & Cie. Streamliner Tourbillon Vantablack
During Geneva Watch Days in August/September, H. Moser & Cie. showed us this Streamliner Tourbillon with a Vantablack dial. The Streamliner has been a very successful launch for this brand from Schaffhausen, and the designers nailed it with this beautiful version in red gold with a dial treated with Vantablack, a coating used in astrophysics. With a retail price of CHF 109,000, it’s not for everyone (nor should it be), but even if you have that kind of money to spend on a watch, there may not be one available to you. There’s an incredible demand for just about any Streamliner model. You can read our article on the Streamliner Tourbillon here.
Grand Seiko Kodo Constant-force Tourbillon SLGT003
The Grand Seiko Kodo is one of the most impressive watches I’ve seen this year. It debuted during the Watches and Wonders show in Geneva in March. Only 20 pieces were made, and apparently, a number of them have been sold already for CHF 382,000. The case of the Kodo is made of platinum, and some external parts are made of Grand Seiko’s Brilliant Hard Titanium. Inside it beats the brand’s manual-wind caliber 9ST1. It features a constant-force tourbillon mechanism with an accuracy of +5/-1 seconds per day on average. You can find out more about this top-of-the-line Grand Seiko here.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Perpetual Calendar
The Polaris Perpetual Calendar was the first watch shown to me at Watches and Wonders in Geneva. When talking about Jaeger-LeCoultre, the Reverso always comes to mind first, but there’s more to the brand. The Polaris collection caters to a different audience, one that’s a bit more sporty, perhaps. This Perpetual Calendar has the new JLC caliber 868, consisting of no less than 351 components. Besides a chronograph and GMT, I think a perpetual calendar is a pretty useful complication for everyday use. JLC’s 42mm pink gold case is quite stunning and features both polished and brushed surfaces. The rubber strap is a bit too sporty for me on a pink gold watch with a perpetual calendar, but it’s easy enough to swap it for a leather strap. Compared to the prices above, €54,000 almost sounds normal. That’s the retail price of this beautiful rose gold Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Perpetual Calendar. You can read our article on this fantastic watch here.
Patek Philippe 5270P-014
Everyone is (seemingly) talking about the Nautilus these days, and I could have included the new Nautilus 5811/1G on this list. In all honesty, though, I am a bit tired of that watch. I don’t think it’s the best or nicest watch out there, let alone a grail. The steel 3700 and 5711 are nice watches, but I think they’ve received way too much praise compared to the other jewels in the Patek Philippe collection. Aside from the classic PP reference 3940, I’ve always liked the brand’s perpetual calendar chronographs. This reference 5270P-014 is an example of what Patek is to me — a beautiful platinum 41mm case, a lacquered green dial, and an exquisite caliber CH 29-535 PS Q. It has an instantaneous 30-minute counter, a perpetual calendar showing the day, date, month, and leap year, a day/night indicator, and a moonphase complication. The retail price of the Patek Philippe 5270P-014 is €189,500. We covered this watch here.
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonshine 310.62.42.50.99.001
Although I listed the Speedmaster Chrono Chime in my article with overall favorites for 2022, I think that the new Speedmaster Moonshine belongs in an overview like this. After the success of the Speedmaster Apollo 11 Moonshine limited edition from 2019, Omega decided to use this precious gold alloy in the regular collection as well. During Omega Days 2022, the brand introduced the Speedmaster Moonshine with a “golden panda” dial (see above) and one in green (click here). Of the two, the panda is my preference. The green is a bit too dark for my taste, but I know that many Speedmaster fans love that one as well. The new Speedmaster Moonshine models are part of the Moonwatch collection and are not limited, but they are definitely not widely available yet. Just like its steel counterpart, this watch is powered by Omega’s caliber 3861. The retail price of the Speedmaster Professional Moonshine 310.62.42.50.99.001 is €32,200.
A. Lange & Söhne Grand Lange 1 137.033
This model is “Grand” because it measures 41mm in diameter instead of the 38.5mm of the regular Lange 1. This particular Grand Lange 1 137.033 was a new release for 2022 and comes in at €48,800. It has a rose gold case and buckle and a dial made of solid silver. Its caliber L095.1 consists of 397 parts and has a power reserve of 72 hours. The Grand Lange 1 is also available in white gold (ref. 137.038) for the same price.
Breguet Tradition 7047 “Grande Complication” fusée tourbillon
The Breguet Tradition 7047 combines the typical architecture from Abraham-Louis Breguet’s pocket watches with the mechanism that he’s most famous for, the tourbillon. This 7047 is available in platinum and rose gold and retails for €203,400. However, if your budget doesn’t stretch that far, try to find a pre-owned Breguet Tradition without the tourbillon, and you’ll be surprised (click here). Inside this 7047 is caliber 569, featuring a fusée tourbillon mechanism. This movement has 542 parts and offers a power reserve of 50 hours. We covered this specific watch here.
Bvlgari Octo Finissimo 103717
This Octo Finissimo is available in rose gold and yellow gold, though the latter is limited to the US market. At first, I preferred the rose gold model, but after trying them both in Geneva last August, I changed my mind and went yellow. The combination of yellow gold and the brown dial offers a bit more contrast than the rose gold model. This Bvlgari Octo Finissimo was one of my favorite watches from the Geneva Watch Days show. The retail price is $45,500, but as indicated, only 50 pieces will be available to the US market. In my opinion, Bvlgari should have made this the regular model and the rose gold edition for the USA. Inside is the brand’s in-house caliber BVL 138 with a micro-rotor and a power reserve of 65 hours. The thickness (or thinness) of this 40mm watch is also worth praising at just 6.5mm.
The rise of gold watches
That was my selection of gold and platinum watches that I liked best this year. And sure, there are many more that I could have also mentioned. Gold has been perceived as tacky for a long time, and undeservedly so, I might add. It’s a beautiful material that brings some warmth to a watch. However, it also affects the price of watches, as you know. The watches in this 2022 overview carry heavy price tags, for sure.
But there are many alternatives to explore if you want. You don’t need to buy a new Rolex Day-Date. You could also opt for a ref. 1803, 18038, or 18238 at prices that start below that of a modern, steel Rolex sports model. But you can also look at vintage Longines or Omega watches in gold, which are priced attractively. In case you’ve never tried on a gold watch, do make sure to do so first.
Let us know what you think of this list of the best gold and platinum watches of 2022. If you have any other suggestions, drop them in the comments below.