Patek Philippe is an iconic luxury watch brand with nearly two centuries of history of flawless quality, extravagant design, and perfect taste in luxury watchmaking. Patek Philippe has been producing elegant and exquisite luxury watches for 175 years to date, and in May 2015, this world-famous luxury watchmaker celebrated its 175th anniversary. Taking into account the rich history and present of Patek Philippe, it is due time to recollect some most famous watches of Patek Philippe, and its features distinguishing Patek Philippe luxury watches from a realm of other prestigious watches produced now.
The first interesting fact about Patek Philippe is that it is the only family-owned luxury watch brand nowadays; the majority of luxury watchmaking companies created long ago and retaining the authentic traditions of Swiss quality and design have nevertheless become commercialized entities owned by people having nothing in common with the brands’ inceptions. Nowadays, the Patek Philippe watchmaking company is governed and led by Thierry Stern, the great grandson of Charles Stern who took the leadership of Patek Philippe in 1932. To commemorate the 175th anniversary of the company, Mr. Stern announced the launch of a set of new astounding timepieces this year, which were audaciously presented at the Baselworld 2014 exhibition in May this year.
One of the major pearls of this year’s anniversary collection is surely the Nautilus Travel Time Chronograph (Ref. 5990/1A-001), a very interesting watch with the second time zone, the chronograph register on the 6 o’clock position, and the pointer-date function in the upper part of the dial. An interesting feature of this model is that chronograph pushers are located to the left from the case of this watch – this model shares this feature with its predecessor Nautilus Chronograph Ref. 5980/1A. However, the number of chronograph options is reduced in this model, with only one 60-minute counter available. The local time zone can be changed with the help of left-hand pushers on the case, and the three-part case of the Nautilus Travel Time Chronograph is obviously equipped with water resistance up to 120 meters.
Another highlight of the 2014 Baselworld presentation by the Patek Philippe luxury watch brand is the Annual Calendar Chronograph (Ref. 5960/1A-001) watch model. In contrast to the previous model with an unusual form of the case typical for the Nautilus collection, the new Annual Calendar Chronograph model has a more traditional round case, a stainless steel bracelet with droplet-shaped links, and a stylish fold-over clasp. Its design is masculine and laconic, with stainless steel’s perfect combination with a restrained black-and-white palette of the dial elegantly underlined with a couple of red and blue accents.
This new model presents an altered monocounter scale layout, and its case is surprisingly made of stainless steel, counter to the traditionally used platinum in this collection. Though stainless steel used to be the material of the Nautilus and Auanaut luxury watches by Patek Philippe, this model is indeed impressive with its unusual, innovative design and technical solutions.