It’s easy to forget that most watchmakers make pieces for women. It’s not uncommon to see watchmakers save all the complications for men’s pieces, we don’t really know why, but it is a trend that’s been changing slowly over the years. Patek Philippe has realized this, of course, but it can’t just make a new watch in five minutes.
The 7040G/250G has a case diameter of 36mm and is crafted from white gold. But, who cares about that when there is a blue enamel grand feu dial with gorgeous guilloché on it coupled with white gold hands, markers and a diamond bezel. Inside the case is the self-winding calibre R 27 PS, an ultra-thin (5.05mm thick) movement with a 48-hour power reserve and a classic minute repeater complication featuring the Patek Philippe seal as a decorative cover over the repeater’s governor. Price on request.
Minute Repeater & Retrograde Calendar Ref. 5304
A more unusual one from Patek Philippe’s catalogue, it’s not often that the brand does watches where you can see most of the movement. Sure, the brand does skeleton watches, but this doesn’t really cover it, some of the components for the retrograde calendar are exposed on the dial side, and sapphire disks (with gold windows and black backdrops for easier legibility) for the indications. I like the style though, it’s not really Patek Philippe’s style, but they’ve made it work well.
The watch has a 43mm 18k rose gold case with gorgeous white gold inserts on the sides of the case and lugs. These combine nicely with the baguette-cut diamonds set in the bezel to provide a suitably blingy look. Luckily, Patek Philippe also includes a minute repeater, visible on the underside of the case set into the calibre R 27 PS QR LU, which has a power reserve of between 38 and 48 hours. Price on request.
One of the most iconic watches Patek Philippe makes is the Sky Moon Tourbillon. It’s also one of the most complicated it makes with no fewer than 12 complications. More impressive than the complications (as hard as that is to imagine) is the finishing and execution of the piece. Granted, it’s not going to be to everyone’s tastes, it’s not subtle, but it has been finished beautifully. Highlights include the hand engraving on the 18k rose gold case and the brown enamel grand feu dial, of which two enameling techniques are used. The more complex of the two is the technique used in the creation of the floral motif at the centre of the main time dial. Called enamel grand feu cloisonné it requires the artisan to use gold filaments to outline the flower’s shapes and then fill with enamel with great care to create the colour gradients.
Inside the watch is the hand-wound calibre R TO 27 QR SID LU CL, which has nearly as many components in it (705) as it does consonants in its name. The front dial features the time display as well as a perpetual calendar with retrograde date, moonphase, day, month and year indications. Around the back there’s a sky chart with another moonphase display and sidereal time indication (see our WristWatch Lexicon page). There’s also a minute repeater with cathedral gongs (for a louder, richer sound) and a tourbillon, although neither of these are visible thanks to the twin dials. It too has a power reserve of between 38 and 48 hours. Price on request.