The Calatrava Reference 5224R-001, the headliner among the seventeen new watches unveiled by Patek Philippe during Watches and Wonders 2023, scores high for legibility, ease of use and originality.
Arriving amid a strong set of debuts, including a highly jeweled Grandmaster Chime and the first annual calendar within the Aquanaut Luce collection (to be covered in upcoming posts), this newest adaptation of Patek Philippe’s Travel Time dual-time display is paired with an original display of local time and home time via two center hands turning on a 24-hour circle.
Patek Philippe has used similar 24-hour displays, but most have been seen on watches from the distant past. In the early twentieth century Patek Philippe made a series of Chronometro Gondolo watches for the Brazilian retailer Gondolo & Labouriau.
But for the new watch, Patek Philippe flipped the original design. Instead of placing the noontime indication at the more traditional 6 o’clock position, Patek Philippe opts to update (and, to many, simplify) the display by placing noon at the top of the dial where, it seems, more wearers look when checking the time.
In another nod to simplicity and aesthetics, Patek Philippe has also replaced the traditional in-case correction pushers for local time with a new patented correction system that allows the user to pull out the crown.
When pulled out to the intermediate position, the local time can be adjusted backwards and forwards in one-hour increments.
To accomplish these new features, Patek Philippe built new caliber 31-260 PS FUS 24H. The movement is an update to Patek Philippe’s 31-260 ultra-thin self-winding base caliber from 2011, which here includes a 24-hour mechanism and a Travel Time mechanism.
In 2021, Patek Philippe further enhanced the initial caliber (then placed into the In-Line Perpetual Calendar Reference 5236P-001) with a new operating frequency of 4 Hz, a twenty per cent increase in barrel-spring torque, a mini-rotor in platinum and a reduction wheel that uncouples the self-winding mechanism when the watch is being manually wound.
The watch’s 42mm rose-gold case nicely complements a sharp-looking blue dial that Patek Philippe has set with contemporary, high-relief rose gold numerals, hour markers and five-minute cabochons.
The watch is also notable for its generous use of luminous material within the rose-gold, syringe-type hands, the hour markers and the numerals.
More New in 2023
As noted above, Patek Philippe for 2023 adds an annual calendar to the Aquanaut Luce to create Annual Calendar Reference 5261R-001 ($61,506), the first annual calendar in the Aquanaut collection.
Finished with a very nice blue-gray dial and attached to a matching strap, the 39.9mm rose gold watch enriches Patek Philippe’s range of complicated ladies’ watches.
Also for 2023, Patek Philippe adds a blue-gray sunburst dial and a navy-blue grained calfskin strap to its distinctive Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Chronograph Reference 5924G-001 ($75,699) and adds a khaki green lacquered dial to the Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Chronograph Reference 5924G-010 ($79,699).
Patek Philippe also updates its Calatrava references 6007G-001, 6007G-010 and 6007G-011 with a new modern dial style featuring black dials and three types of finish with an embossed carbon pattern.
Each also receives new color accents in on their respective dials and straps: yellow (6007G-001), red (6007G-010) or sky blue (6007G-011). Each is priced at $37,850.
Patek Philippe also expanded its range of watches for women with the new Calatrava self-winding Reference 4997/200R-001, a rose gold, diamond-set watch ($38,441) now sporting a rich purple wave dial pattern created by fifty layers of translucent lacquer.
Pictures don’t do this dial justice as the lacquer finish here is extraordinary.
We’ll discuss additional Patek Philippe 2023 debuts in upcoming posts.