One hundred seventy-five years is an enormous span of time for a watch company to be in continuous existence and consistently producing not just timepieces, but top-of-the-range timepieces. What is the secret of this quintessentially traditional company, which has managed to move with the times so gracefully, continuing to appeal to younger people just getting bit by the horology bug as much as older, settled collectors?
Patek Philippe’s booth at Baselworld made for big news at both the 2013 and 2014 fairs: last year for not having been upgraded, and this year for being the only brand in Hall 1.0 to debut a brand-new, chic structure designed by a big-name architect.
When most people think of Patek Philippe, they think of the evergreen models that roll off the lips of enthusiasts all over the world: Nautilus, Gondolo, Calatrava and, perhaps even, that delectable worldtimer that appeared in 2013’s new Patek Philippe offerings as Reference 5130. But one of the many elements that I personally adore about Patek Philippe is its love of the handcrafted arts and the perpetuation of them in highly aesthetic ways.