16 July 2018
It is the archetype of Patek Philippe’s savoir-faire. The Reference 5531R World Time Minute Repeater reinterprets the traditions of the manufacturer and at the same time takes up its capacity for renewal and renovation. In fact it combines Patek Philippe’s two typical complications, which serve respectively to indicate the time by means of chimes and to show simultaneously the hour in 24 time zones. And thus integrates the mechanical systems that regulate the different functions in a movement developed for the purpose: the R 27 HU self-winding caliber. Unusual in its construction—the gongs are affixed to the case middle, making them more difficult to control but ensuring excellent acoustics—it is the first watch in the world with a patented mechanism that allows the minute repeater to strike the local time (instead of the time at home as others do). Nor is this all. The Reference 5531R draws on the manufacturer’s historical heritage for its aesthetics too: the cloisonné enamel center of the dial is decorated with a landscape of Lake Geneva, to be exact a view of the terraced vineyards of Lavaux (a UNESCO World Heritage Site); the rose gold case middle is engraved with Clous de Paris by hand, and the same guilloché pattern is found on the slide of the repeater and on the off-center micro-rotor in 22 ct. gold. Lastly it is worth mentioning the polished rose gold case (diam. 40.2 mm) with perforated handles. The quality, accuracy and finish of the whole are as always guaranteed by the Patek Philippe Seal. In a nutshell, an extraordinary creation: only a few of which, precisely because of its exceptional character, can be produced in a year. Obviously intended for the only the wealthiest of collectors.