Patek Philippe has first unveiled the self-winding Calatrava Pilot Travel Time (ref. 5524) collection during the Baselworld 2015 show. Combining in the same package a ‘historic’ dial layout of a 1930s pilot’s watch with a meticulously sculpted white gold body that only the modern tech makes possible, this is one of the most notable timekeepers presented at the trade fair. Also, there is an in-house self-winding movement that makes one drown in his own saliva while searching for one’s credit card.
For a brand of such pedigree, Patek Philippe isn’t especially consistent when it comes to the design of their Gondolo series specifically or rectangular watches in general. The things that they share is an elongated body and, of course, a brilliantly executed mechanism: a Rolls-Royce of a mechanical movement that any wristwatch would be proud to be animated with. Among the three models of the series that are currently present on their corporate website, the 2013 Patek Philippe Gondolo 8 Days (Ref. 5200G) is the most exciting with its finely crafted Art Deco case and deliciously complicated, exquisitely finished movement.
Patek Philip‘s classic Calatrava line has just been updated for this year. Featuring a tried and true automatic movement and a body of classic proportions, the new self-winding Patek Philippe Calatrava (Ref. 5227) looks emphatically modest, even in its precious 18-karat rose gold body.
With the new Patek Philippe Ladies First Perpetual Calendar (Ref. 7140) automatic wrist watch, the legendary Swiss-based Manufacture gracefully fills the gaping hole in its line of ladies “complication” timekeepers that for some time now included sporty chronographs, convenient world timers and even simple GMT watches for frequent travelers, but, for some unknown reason, lacked a real perpetual calendar model. Adorned with diamonds and presented in a rose gold case, this is one of the dressiest perpetuals in the brand’s product range.
The 2011 Patek Philippe Ref. 3670A super-limited chronograph is powered by an extremely rare and highly appreciated by collectors PP Caliber 13-130 hand-wound movement. The caliber was in production around 50 years ago and is to contemporary high-end movements like the 1954 Mercedes W 196 to Ferrari Enzo: it is as archaic as it is extremely cool.
With its built-in minute repeater, monopusher chronograph and an instantaneous perpetual calendar the automatic Patek Philippe Triple Complication Ref. 5208P lacks only a tourbillon escapement to become a real flagship of the enormous fleet of ultra-luxury watches that one of the oldest Swiss watchmaking brands currently has on offer.
The German customizers are at it again! Right after the introduction of their bespoke hand-crafted Grieb & Benzinger Blue Wave 18-karat rose gold mono-pusher chronograph, they now offer another unique timepiece for another well-paying customer: the Grieb & Benzinger Blue Sensation regulator chronograph. Based on an antique Patek Philippe hand-wound movement that was originally built more than 120 years ago for Tiffany & Co, an American jewelry and silverware company founded in 1837, the unique timekeeper features the German brand’s signature heavily skeletonized movement and open-worked dial. And it is also meticulously engraved on just about any surface where a skilled hand of an artisan was capable of leaving even a single dent in precious metal.
After the impressive Calatrava 4897 R, the 2010 Patek Philippe Ladies First Chronograph 7071R is somewhat of a disappointment. I mean, do women really tend to buy these things?
The 2009 Patek Philippe Calatrava Officier Ref. 5153J was officially introduced in March 2009 during the annual Baselworld 2009 international trade show. Presented in a yellow gold case, the 5153J features the usual sober dial layout and is equipped with an elegant “hunter” back cover. Previously, a mandatory feature of a “trench watch,” the engraved cover makes this new collection a nice (although quite expensive for a simple three-hander) present for a West Point graduate.
Patek Philippe has just released its new Calatrava Ref. 4897 R: yet another member of its affordable *chuckle* Calatrava family.