So finally you have decided to invest in a watch. The very first question that comes to a budding collector’s mind is why they should buy a Patek Phillipe timepiece? And why not? Patek has a rich history & has its own distinct style. Patek watches are immediately recognizable & most importantly, they hold a mighty reseller market. Patek Philippe is the name that usually pops out in everyone's mind when discussing luxury watches. The fame, the iconic recommendations, the incredible heritage & even the end results at auctions are areas where the brand holds a proven track record.
In the universe of luxury watches, numerous brands get thrown in our faces every day, from Breitling to Omega, Rolex & many more. Combined, these three brands spend an estimated 150 million dollars per year on advertising to ensure that it is known by all that they are at the forefront of luxury.
However, one such brand uses a modest fraction of that amount & is still appreciated to produce some of the world’s best quality watches. They make around 50,000 watches per year - 35,000 of which are automatic men’s watches. It is conceived by numerous as the pinnacle of Swiss watchmaking. That brand is Patek Philippe.
Since its conception in 1839, it has continued to be a family-owned & independent watch manufacturer. If you are amongst the lucky few searching for your very first Patek Philippe timepiece, we have got some essential information that you must be aware of before buying one.
Patek Philippe currently offers approximately 200 models. The best way to organize these watches is into several subcategories or “families.” The majority of men’s watches include the Calatrava, Nautilus, Aquanaut, Complicated & Grand Complication families.
Let us first know a bit about the major categories within the Patek collection.
- Nautilus: 1970s icon that pushed Patek Philippe to enter in the sports watch market in 1976.
- Aquanaut: Begun in 1997 as an affordable alternative to the Nautilus. These timepieces have newly become hard to come by, particularly in steel.
- Calatrava: Patek's Bauhaus-inspired round dress timepieces, first discharged in the late 1920s. Typically simple & elegant, these blank canvases also get paved with diamonds with time & date only.
- Complications: Usually housing two or three complications (mechanical devices that do something other than telling the time), these watches range from clean & simple dials to intensely decorative ones.
- Grand Complications: Within horology, a grand complication holds many complications within one timepiece. There is actually no hard-line, but most folks agree that three complications or more form a grand complication (excluding a date mechanism).
- Golden Ellipse: Originally issued in 1968, these genuinely unique oblong ultra-thin watches are available again in an updated larger size.
- Twenty~4: 36mm & smaller, square or round, quartz or mechanical, are dress watches for ladies.
Patek Philippe is usually considered as the top brand among all principal Swiss watch manufacturers. Why is this true? NY Watch Lab lays out seven reasons for Patek Philippe’s success.
Reason #1: Expertise
Patek Philippe watches have ruled every aspect of exquisite watchmaking – from the hand-winding two-hand timepiece & “standard” complications with functions like a yearly calendar or second-time zone to sophisticated masterpieces, minute repeaters, tourbillons & split-seconds chronographs. Magisterial artisan craftsmanship fits hand-in-hand with the practice of modern, high-tech machinery.
Reason #2: Tradition
This level of expertise cannot be achieved overnight. Patek Philippe & its watches have been in existence for 177 yrs & have created watches continuously throughout this time, resulting in a large amount of experience passed on from one generation of the watchmaker to the next.
Reason #3: Vision for the future
Though Patek Philippe owns such a famous tradition, the manufacture is not chained to its past. On the one side, the company maintains the values of the traditional art of watchmaking while investing significantly in new materials, technologies, and production methods. The label has also made a calculated choice to produce unique designs like the 2015 pilots’ timepiece, the Calatrava Pilot Travel Time.
Reason #4: Quality
Quality is one of the most valuable resources at Patek Philippe. The entire company is designed to support it. With the commencement of the Patek Philippe Seal in 2008, the organization imposed tough measures that often surpass typical industry measures. But the dedication & commitment to excellence does not just apply to the timepieces themselves. Patek places the most chief standards on worker training – from the salesperson to watchmaker, including customer executive support that continues from sales to service.
Reason #5: Family-owned company
Patek Philippe commenced in 1839 & was driven for over 80 yrs by the Stern family, with the control now in its 4th generation. This provides a high degree of consistency in the company’s philosophy & policies. It also eliminates the chance of radical shifts in direction forced by a changing management, so the track of victory will most certainly continue. This guarantees sustainability, which is very closely aligned with the following point.
Reason #6: Value
Anyone who purchases a Patek Philippe knows that he probably won’t lose any money if he chooses to sell it later. The watch's value may increase over time, though there is no way to predict this in individual cases. But it’s a reassuring fact, even when most people purchase a watch only for their own enjoyment & don’t have immediate plans to resell.
Reason #7 Perfect decoration
The essence of hand-applied embellishment in the manufacturing process is really high, both in style & technique. Around 40 to 60 steps are required even for inconspicuous components like wheels. Artisan processes, including delicate engraving, enamel painting, the setting of expensive stones & inlays, all play an essential role.
Is It Worth It?
In simple monetary terms, it stands to reason that anything with so much heritage, innovation, high-quality craftsmanship & exclusivity will be worth a great deal of money. Yes, it will indeed hold its value when your grateful kids will be taking its ownership.
If you are thinking of buying a Patek, we have a great range of pre-worn & new watches available online & at our NY Watch Lab store.