At Jonathans’ Watch Buyer, our goal is to help you navigate the luxury watch market. We’ve already discussed everything you need to know about Rolex, as well as talked about the many different models they offer. Today we are going to discuss Patek Philippe.
Patek Philippe is one of the most sought-after brands of luxury watches. Patek Philippe watches are considered state-of-the-art, rare by nature, and for some models, you must wait many years to get your hands on one. But we believe they are well worth the wait and here are 26 reasons why.
26 Facts You Need To Know About Patek Philippe
- Patek Philippe was founded in 1851 and is still privately owned to this day. They are based in Switzerland and the company was founded by Antoni Patek and Frenciszek Czapek and started by making pocket watches. It was in 1845 that Adrien Philippe joined Patek, one year after Czapek left. Philippe invented the keyless winding mechanism. Patek Philippe was brought to the American market in 1935.
- In 1989 they created one of the most complicated mechanical watches to mark the 150th anniversary of the luxury brand. This watch has 39 complications, including the date of Easter, time of sunrise, equation of time, sidereal time, and more.
- Patek Philippe was the exclusive supplier to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and their consort.
- It takes nine months to manufacture one basic watch out of their line.
- It is estimated that they have made less than 1 million watches since 1939.
- Every part of the watch is finished by hand.
- All the watch components are manufactured in-house.
- They have used traditional case-making techniques since the 1800’s and still do to this day.
- Every minute repeater on each watch is checked by the president of the company.
- In 2014, Patek manufactured their most complicated watch ever to celebrate their 175th anniversary. The Grandmaster Chime, Ref. 6300A-010 sold for $31.2 million dollars, took seven years to produce and has 20 complications. It is the most expensive watch ever sold.
- Most of the cases for Patek Philippe watches are forges from solid pieces of gold or platinum.
- Patek watches are quartz timepieces.
- The Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300G, released in 2016, features 20 complications. You can only purchase this watch with an application and can take up to two years to be approved.
- The Grandmaster Chime Ref. 5175R launched in 2014 and is the most complicated and expensive Patek in their history.
- Patek made an Art Deco style five-minute repeater in platinum with a chain link bracelet for a woman in 1916. This was the first of its kind.
- The prototype for the Calatrava collection was released in 1932 at the Ref. 96.
- In 2005, Patek introduced the silicon escapement wheel to the watch industry. This was first integrated in the Patek Philippe Advanced Research Annual Calendar Ref. 5250 and was a limited series of 100 watches.
- The Nautilus collection was introduced in 1976, which is considered one of the most valuable steel watches in the world, and us their version of a sports watch.
- Patek is the first luxury watch brand to use Chronifer M-14 X steel in its watches. This is a material that has been specially designed for the watchmaking industry.
- The Aquanaut collection, which is one Patek’s most iconic watches was released in 1997. This watch was launched in stainless and is a luxury sports watch.
- Patek Philippe has broken four records for selling the most expensive watches at auction. In 2008, the Sky Moon Tourbillon Ref. 5002P was auctioned at Hong Kong Sotheby’s for HK $11.75 million. In 2010, Christie’s in Geneva auctioned a chronograph in yellow gold that had a perpetual calendar and a moon phase display for 6.26 million Swiss Francs. Then, in 2013, at an online auction, a collector bought a Patek for 471,000 Euros. Finally, the Ref. 1518 in steel was auctioned in 2016 and sold for 9,600,000 CHF.
- Only four of the Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 in steel were made. They come with a chronograph and a perpetual calendar.
- For the 150th anniversary of the company, they released the Calibre 89 pocket watch that has 33 complications.
- In 2001, the Patek Philippe Museum opened in Geneva and has over 2000 timepieces. It is considered one of the most well-regarded museums about watchmaking and watches in the world.
- The Henry Graves Supercomplication was made in 1933. This watch has 24 functions, and when Henry Graves died, the watch was auctioned off for $11 million.
- If you are looking for a Patek Philippe, Jonathan’s Watch Buyer can source one for you if we don’t have it. Just contact us!