The vintage-inspired Rado Golden Horse 1957 is a throwback to one of the brand’s classic designs and succeeds by not straying too far from the original. Available in either a blue (as seen here) or green gradient dial, these 37mm-wide watches come on an old-school grains-of-rice bracelet and are limited to 1,957 pieces.
The dial is done with the same style indices, hands, red-date, and twin decorative golden seahorses, while the thick box-shaped sapphire crystal tops off the throwback vibes. The highly polished rhodium indices and dauphine hands would ordinarily send a chill down my spine from a photography point of view (let alone legibility) but the healthy double-sided anti-reflective coating goes a very long way.
The 37mm-wide and 10.8mm-thick case would ordinarily be a bit too small for me (though I’ve increasingly been appreciating sub-40mm watches as of late), but the 40.9mm lug-to-lug measurement confirms what I felt as I wore it. The Golden Horse is a smaller watch for sure, especially by contemporary standards, but the proportions make it look just right on my 7.5 inch wrist. I also think the bracelet does a lot for the watch in this regard, as the leather strap on the previous red-dial Golden Horse did make it wear smaller.
Speaking of which, the polished grains-of-rice bracelet is very well done. It looks, feels, and wears like a bracelet that costs more than the sub-$2,000 price of the Golden Horse. The high polish might be a scratch magnet down the road, but that’s not a consideration that substantively takes anything away from it. The brushed folding clasp is adorned with — you guessed it — two seahorses. Hats off to Rado for its execution of the bracelet.
Where things are thoroughly modern here is with the movement. Being under the umbrella of the Swatch Group, Rado uses an ETA C07.611 movement, which is a take on the 2824. This means that we get the 80-hour power reserve operating at 21,600 vph Powermatic silicon hair spring movement that’s been increasingly prevalent with Rado, as well as its Swatch Group siblings. You won’t get to take a look at it, though. I love an enclosed case back, and that’s what you get here, along with three engraved seahorses to adorn it.
There are currently four versions of the Golden Horse: a red-dial model on leather strap; black dial on bracelet; green dial on bracelet; and this blue dial on bracelet. Personally, I have to say the blue is actually my favorite. I do really like the red-dial model, as well, but trust me, you want this watch on a bracelet. I can’t speak to the black, as I haven’t seen it in person, but it’s not hard to imagine what a black dial looks like. As for the green gradient model, it is very cool and while this is the “of the moment” color, I just prefer the blue. Limited to 1,957 pieces, the Rado Golden Horse 1957 is priced at $1,800. You can learn more at rado.com.