Patek Philippe Calatrava Reference 5227G-010

Patek Philippe 5227G-010 - Perpetuelle

Although alternative precious metal and dial combinations exist for the 5227, Patek Philippe took it upon itself to add yet another by introducing the Calatrava 5227G-010 with a stark, black face and a white gold case. Like other variations, the design is easy on the eyes and telling time is a breeze, as it should be for any dress watch. A date aperture located at the three o’clock position is nothing out of the ordinary, either—and why should it be, given that the 5227 is a traditional timepiece meant to fly under the radar and quietly radiate superb quality?

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The Superlative new Patek Philippe Split-Seconds Chronograph Ref. 5370, with Platinum Case and Black Enamel Dial

Patek Philippe Split-Seconds Chronograph Ref. 5370 caseback - Perpetuelle

The year 2014 was dedicated entirely to Patek Philippe’s 175th anniversary, but 2015 still gives us some exciting new watches from Patek.  Well, exciting, and controversial, at least in view of strong opinions on the new Calatrava Travel Time 5524! Overall, though, 2015 evidences that the brand continues to look ahead.  The chronograph & split-seconds chronograph type of watch is part of the core legacy of Patek Philippe: the manufacture’s very first wrist chronograph, presented in 1923, was already a split-seconds model.   Since then, the complication – which allows lap and intermediate times to be stopped without interrupting the ongoing measurement – has always featured in the repertoire of regularly produced Patek Philippe wristwatches.  Patek Philippe’s new Ref. 5370 split-seconds chronograph, seen here, is a watch whose mechanics are indeed focused entirely on measuring the duration of transient events.  But seems a bit of an understatement for a watch which will probably list at over 200,000 Swiss Francs, now isn’t it?!

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First Look: Patek Philippe Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time

Patek Philippe Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time watch - Perpetuelle

Well, Baselworld 2015 has officially begun, and I often like to start with Patek Philippe.  There are some exciting pieces in the Patek 2015 lineup (you are gonna love the 5370 Split-Seconds Chronograph), but let’s start with a piece that I think will be controversial…the new Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time.  No doubt this one’s going to catch a lot of folks off-guard.  At first glance, one might be inclined to think that this watch does not even look like a Patek Philippe.  Indeed it is a pilot’s watch, as the brand seems to be trying to reclaim its association with aviator’s watches.   It features a dual zone-time mechanism, with local and home day/night indication in apertures on either side of the dial, and a date sub-dial at 6 o’clock.   The blue varnished dial has white gold applied numerals that are luminous (they hands are luminous as well).  There is a crown at 3 o’clock and two pump pushers on the other side of the case.  The watch is fitted on a brown calf leather strap with what Patek calls a “clevis prong” buckle.  The contrarian in me likes this watch, but I think that most Patek fans will pan it on account of it not having that special, distinctive look that a Patek Philippe watch should.

Hmmm…how about you?

Patek Philippe Reference 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time

40.5mm white gold case, automatic mechanical PP Cal CH 28-520 C FUS (sapphire case back)

Price 42,000 CHF

Patek Philippe Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time front back - Perpetuelle

Patek Philippe Ref 5524 Calatrava Pilot Travel Time  - Perpetuelle

The caliber CH 28-520 C FUS movement is also found in the Patek Philippe Nautilus Travel Time Chronograph Ref. 5990/1A.

I’ll be back with more details soon.

Patek Philippe Lowers Watch Prices in USA

EUR CHF Graph courtesy xe-com

As you may be aware, the Swiss Central Bank recently abandoned its caps on the CHF/EUR exchange rate.  This led to an immediate and rather significant ~15% move in the currency, to the detriment of Swiss watchmakers and other Swiss exporters.  The immediate reaction from the industry was one of shock and awe from those impacted. And of course, watch collectors everywhere wondered what all this would mean for prices (though some savvy buyers managed to snap up pieces in advance of anticipated price increases).  And now we are starting to get a clearer picture of new price dynamics in the luxury watch market, with recent announcements from two of the world’s most influential watchmakers.  Immediately after the exchange rate move, Rolex, the world’s largest watch brand, announced it would implement a high single-digit price increase in Japan.

Patek Philippe Logo

And now, Patek Philippe, one of the world’s preeminent and most prestigious watch manufacturers, has announced a series of price adjustments across its various markets.  As you can see in the letter below, the price changes — which include a 7% decrease here in the US — are an effort to adjust to the recent currency moves and reach price parity across markets.  Beyond the U.S., prices are being lowered in other geographies as well, and raised in others.  There is also mention of retail watch inventories being at “unreasonable levels” which surely factored into the announcement as well.

Click here to read the letter from Thierry Stern to his “Partners” (his retailers) outlining all the details:

Patek Philippe SA Global Price Adjustment Letter Feb 2015

And if you haven’t yet see our hands-on review and commentary on the new Patek Philippe Ref 5975 Multi-Scale Chronopgraph for the brand’s 175 Anniversary, you should check that out now, right here>>>

Patek-Philippe-5975-Perpetuelle-2 - Copy