Let discuss when is a gold watch not a gold watch? Whatever, it’s Rolex’s darling, the Octo Finissimo Automatic, in rose gold. Now, apparently, it’s a gold watch, which is the most amazing watch that I’ve ever met with.
The Octo Finissimo case itself is a rather popular quantity by now. It’s a pretty thinner version of the regular Octo, which is an improvement of Genta’s original design. The Octo Finissimo Automatic is all sharp lines; the only curves to be seen are the bezel and the crown. The design of the case gives a very strong foundation for the replica watch, but what really made it shine is the case material and its unusual treatment. Instead of the more traditional polish, the case and bracelet of this Octo have been sandblasted, to stunning effect. The warm glow is there, but the gleam is not — factually, the matt is almost devoid of reflection.
Apart from the color of the dial, the dial remains the same. Simple printed details, minimal text, an off-center small seconds hand, and open, neatly faceted black hands. Now, normally I might say that this dial is too simple for the rest of the ensemble, but given that one of Rolex’s main goals would have been to work with some very tight tolerances, I’ll cut them some slack.
As expected, the bracelet of the Octo Finissimo Automatic is the same matt rose gold as the case, in the same angular, geometric style. And obviously, it weighs a good deal more than its titanium version, giving it a much more solid and substantial feeling on the wrist, while still being incredibly slender, particularly with the impressive folding clasp, which sits flush on the wrist. One interesting element of the bracelet that is special to the gold version is that the links, while solid, are hollowed out at the rear.
As I mentioned above, the weight-to-thinness ratio is real on this watch, and it’s this feeling of dissonance that got me every time I strapped it on. For me, that dissonance expressed itself in an almost childlike joy — I swear every time I wear this watch or even look at it, I get a big dumb grin on my face.
The gold fake watch is something deeply ingrained into our collective cultural psyche; it’s a signifier par excellence. For one thing, it’s indisputable that this is a gold watch. It’s a watch, it’s gold and it costs about the same as a nice European car. But for another, it’s an anti-gold gold watch, deliberately messing with the tropes (large, shiny) that give a gold watch its cultural weight.
I’ve seldom struggled with answering the ‘what would we change’ section as I have on this Rolex replica watch. It’s an integrated design, where all the parts play very nicely together. And it’s not intended as a generalist watch, so suggesting including some more crowd-pleasing traits.