The 2009 Patek Philippe 10 Day Tourbillon 5101R comes in the same art-deco-inspiring body as their 2003 10 Day model, but now offers a lot more appealing grey-and-silver dial with polished rose gold Arabic numerals and sand-blasted surface. The new version not only looks gorgeous but also offers such a degree of, um, pedigree, which is rare even at this, extremely high, price.
Patek Philippe, one of the most revered Manufactures will soon start selling the second model in the highly-exclusive 5101 series. Powered by the same TO 28-20/222 in-house caliber equipped with twin-mainspring barrels, the 10 Day Tourbillon 5101R still sports the same 240 hours of power reserve: an unbeaten record among hand-wound calibers with a tourbillon escapement.
The movement is officially certified by COSC as a chronometer and bears the legendary Hallmark of Geneve stamp on one of its hand-decorated bridges that guarantees the highest quality that money can buy. The mechanism is not only as accurate as a purely mechanical movement can get, but is also very reliable (if you don’t abuse it, that is).
While the first model in the series -the 5101P- was delivered in platinum case (that’s why the “P” index in the model’s reference number), the 5101R will be encased in an 18kt rose gold body of the same art-deco style rectangular shape.
Although the 5101R comes in a less expensive body, the new (or, rather, the refreshed) model, however, looks a bit more appealing than the platinum version.
You see, the successful combination of rose gold case, hands, and Arabic numerals with a sand-blasted dial made of the same precious metal gives it warmer, more comfortable look, while the 5101P was, from where I sit, too cold and distant.
Its “reserve de marche” and small seconds sub-dials, that are conveniently located at 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock respectively, are made in bright silvery gray, that makes the 5101R’s face less monotonous and more, err, exquisite.
As you may have already noticed, the tourbillon display window is moved away from the face and to the other side of the case, which is covered with a sapphire crystal.
Patek Philippe’s representatives say that this is done to prevent the mechanism from unnecessary exposure to ultraviolet radiation that speeds up lubricating oil’s decomposition and effectively shortens the caliber’s expected lifespan.
I can also add that with the tourbillon hidden from prying eyes, the watch gets an even more elegant look. By the way, it took their master watchmakers three years to create the “222” version of the 28-20/220 base caliber that powered the PP 5100P “10 Days” model. And most of the time was spent creating a new tourbillon escapement.
The ref. 5101R in rose gold was officially presented last March at the Basel World 2009 trade fair and will soon be available for order.
Photos: Patek Philippe
Patek Philippe 10 Day Tourbillon 5101R-001 hand-wound watch specification
Price range: $350,000
Movement: Caliber TO 28-20 REC 10J PS IRM, 29 jewels, 11 bridges, Gyromax balance, 21,600 bph, manual winding, COSC certified chronometer, Swiss Made
Complications: Tourbillon escapement, small seconds, power reserve indicator
Power reserve: 240 hours / 10 days
Case material: 18kt rose gold
Case dimensions: 29.60 x 51.70 mm
Case height: 6.30 mm
Dial: Rose gold, sand-blasted
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Hand-stitched, large-scaled alligator strap with a rose gold buckle.