By Jovan Krstevski
Patek Philippe recently announced the impressive Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time ref. 5524T–010 on a rare titanium case and a very nice one-of-a-kind dial. This watch supports Children Action which is a Geneva-based charity.
For a bit of trivia, the non-profit was founded by Bernard Sabrier, a Geneva financier that made a fortune in private banking. Through Mr. Sabrier’s influence, Children Action has reaped the benefits of the proceeds from several unique watches sold in the past that includes many Patek Philippe watches and recently, there are two big-ticket watches that will be sold in Geneva on May 12 and 13, 2018. There is a stainless steel Lange 1815 and the unique Rolex Daytona ref. 6265 in white gold, ah beautiful watches indeed.
So this year’s unique watch is only the 12th known Patek Philippe wristwatch in titanium, a kind of extreme rarity that many watch collectors are looking for. While the case design is identical to the 42 mm stock model, it has a very unique touch such as a lighter hand.
When you look at the watch up close, you can immediately see its titanium case due to its dark grey color but when you look at it from afar, it projects a steel ambiance, much more subtle and precious. The unique brushed finish (as opposed to polished on the standard white or rose gold versions) also adds a great look reminiscent of a truly unique watch.
Another element unique to the watch that reflects the charity event is the inscription at the case band that reads “Children Action 2018”. While the case material is the key difference to the stock model, the dial is also unique. At a distance, you can see how visually distinctive and appealing it is. It is made of brass and plated in black nickel and finished manually by hand.
Its gray finish and a manually executed vertical satin-brushed surface resembles a dark woodgrain appearance which is very attractive in my opinion. This is achieved by brushing in vertical linear pattern to remove the black coating that reveals the brass beneath. The rest of the dial is identical to the stock model, such as the applied Arabic hour markers in 18k white gold, and the hands in blued steel.
The strap is unique to the watch, featuring a faux aged finish with cracked surface matching the dial color. I like the vintage black calfskin leather with contrast stitching. Of course, it comes with a titanium buckle too.
Even though this is far less complicated than the titanium Patek Minute Repeater that was donated by Patek Philippe for Only Watch 2017 that generated over six million dollars for charity, this watch is expected to command an enormous sum too considering its rarity and uniqueness.
Finally, the Calatrava Pilot Travel Time in titanium will be sold by Christie’s at a special event on October 15, 2018 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Geneva.