The history of Patek Philippe, is a story of unique developments, patents and records. The double name of Patek Philippe etched in world history of watchmaking families two founders of the case – Antoine Norbert de Patek, a Polish nobleman, who emigrated to Switzerland, and Adrien Philippe, a young French watchmaker, became Patek’s partner in 1845. It is fair to mention that Patek founded another watchmaking studio in 1839 in Poland, together with Francois Capek, a Czech watchmaker who had settled in Poland. But true fame to company has brought the winder, the first patent of the company, in the form in which it exists today. Adrien Philippe came up with this idea. In addition, the company owns the historic invention patent for sliding windup spring mechanism that prevents damage from excessive plant, production of the first Swiss watches in 1868, a patent for a perpetual calendar mechanism (1889), the first wrist chronograph (1927) and many others. On account of Patek Philippe several historic and unique models that have become collector’s exclusive.
So in 1910 the company created a unique model of Duca di Regla Westminster with beat in five keys. Today it is the only and unmatched instance. And in 1932, a model Calatrava, which has become one of the great classic models of all time. Throughout its history, Patek Philippe has repeatedly appealed to her, she has been steadily developing in the spirit of current fashion trends and technological progress, but its generic features remain recognizable today.
In 1933 the company became owner of the Stern family. In 1949, the brand made another invention. This time it was the famous Gyromax, elegant micro-mechanical creation, which allows you to determine with greater precision the oscillation frequency of the balance sheet. And in 1956, creating the first electronic watch for industrial use.
Micro-rotor – is also a merit of Patek Philippe. He appeared in 1977. In 1989 the company introduced the world the most complicated watch – “Calibre 89”, with 33 functions. 2000, without exaggeration, be called the year of Patek Philippe. The company has introduced 3 complexity pocket watch Star Caliber 2000, an updated collection of Calatrava, a model indicating the universal time with a patented mechanism for simultaneously changing the main time zone and universal time using only one button, a unique clock 10 Jours – rectangular timepiece with manual winding mechanism and power reserve, the watch Gondolo Cabriolet with manual winding in a square enclosure without additional functions with hinged window on the dial.
Opening the new millennium, the company opted for a strategy to surprise. So in 2001, brand unveiled the Sky Moon Tourbillon – the most complicated wristwatch in the world and the first model of the second dial, showing the night sky above the city chosen by the customer. In 2003, after three years of work, brand represented a model Tourbillon with 10-day power reserve. Despite the status of the luminary in the watch industry, and perhaps for this reason, the company is in relentless search for new solutions, exploring and successfully implementing new technologies and materials in the manufacture of mechanical parts. One of these areas – production wheel mechanism of silicon. This technology has been successfully applied in the model Advanced Research Annual Calendar, where all the steel wheels are replaced by silicon, not subject to corrosion, having non-magnetic properties and simpler to manufacture. Models in this series are released in quantities of 100 pieces and are collector’s items, but in the near future, the company plans to launch such a large-scale production of watches.
Since 2005, the company Patek Philippe offered in the unique international charity auction Only Watch, organized by the Association of Monaco to fight myopathy (muscular dystrophy), with the support of His Serene Highness the Prince of Monaco Albert II.
Today, in addition to models with a tourbillon watches, Patek Philippe produced serially rather complicated watches, such as Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar, as well as being Annual Calendar by Patek Philippe.
At the Only Watch 2011 auction model Patek Philippe Stainless Steel Minute Repeater Ref. 3939 was the absolute leader, the timepiece was sold for 1.4 million euros, and in 2013 a model Patek Philippe Grand Complications Titanium 5004T was sold for a record price of 2.95 million euros.