Patek Philippe timepieces are not merely owned but are passed down from generation to generation.
A brilliant start in the watchmaking industry
Five hundred years ago, the era of portable mechanical watches dawned with the invention of the mainspring, allowing timepieces to be scaled down in size. Centuries later, another leap forward took place with inventions that enabled wristwatches to tell time accurately. This golden era began on the May 1, 1839 when a 23-year-old Polish man, Antoine Norbert de Patek, and his fellow countryman, Francois Capek, gave birth to Patek, Capek & Cie. The new company started bringing the world’s finest watches into existence.
On the May 15, 1851, the brand changed its name to Patek, Philippe & Cie to welcome a new partner, Jean-Adrien Philippe, a brilliant French horologist.
Independent pursuit of perfection
Since the Stern family acquired the brand in 1932, Patek Philippe has resisted all efforts to acquire or merge the company. Instead, the brand has chosen to strive for glory in haute horlogerie (the high art of watchmaking) in its own way. Geneva’s oldest independent family-owned watch manufacturer has pursued a philosophy of excellence in its creations since its earliest days, an approach welcomed by the world’s most exceptional individuals.
Such independence allows Patek Philippe to follow its own path, define its own destiny, and achieve successes no one else could reach. Standing alone enables Patek Philippe to chase long-term visions unencumbered by obligations and responsibilities for short-term gains.
“Every Patek Philippe is timeless.“
While Patek Philippe timepieces are widely praised for their accuracy and craftsmanship, a simple way to gauge a watch’s value is through its price at auction. “Patek Philippe wins every auction and every market be it an old model or a recently released one,” said a representative of Christie’s.
A Patek Philippe timepiece increases in value generation after generation; therefore, the brand’s creations are highly sought. At the end of 2019, Patek Philippe once again solidified its place in auction history with the Grandmaster Chime. This steel watch continued Patek Philippe’s streak of putting the brand on the list of the world’s most expensive watches, as Grandmaster Chime 6300A-010 was sold at a record-breaking price of 31 million Swiss francs (over 31 million USD).
Not just a possession but a legacy
Another key part of Patek Philippe’s legacy is its customer base. Apart from historic patents and creations known among the world of high-end watch collectors, Patek Philippe also has a renowned clientele including the Queen Elizabeth II of England, Russian President Vladimir Putin, King Christian IX and Princess Louise of Denmark and King Víctor Emmanuel III of Italy. Having a Patek Philippe on one’s wrist not only means possessing a luxury object that never loses its value. It is also a unique intergenerational legacy, a bridge between the past and the future. From generation to generation, a Patek Philippe timepiece passes down a legacy of supreme craftsmanship and watchmaking artistry.