The Patek Philippe Twenty-4 Automatic event, with many female journalists present, took place in the heart of Milan, in a specially built glass conservatory. Inside, plants and flowers were in abundance, and there was even a (faux) grass lawn. On display were a host of vintage Patek Philippe watches made expressly for women and dating back to the mid-1800s – attesting to the brand’s commitment to women’s watches over the centuries. Even the blue enamel timepiece ordered by Queen Victoria and made by Patek Philippe in 1851 was on show. Joining these historic pieces were some of the first rectangular Twenty-4 watches alongside newer renditions of the timepiece that has captured women’s hearts since 1999, when the quartz versions were launched. Yet above and beyond bands and dancing, ballet performances, and a display of wedding and cocktail dresses, the highlight of the evening was the big reveal of the new round Twenty-4 Automatic.
“Why make something new when we already have something amazing that we can adapt,” said Thierry Stern, President of Patek Philippe during the presentation of the collection. He was referring to multiple aspects of the new Twenty-4 Automatic, including the fact that Twenty-4 is already a highly coveted and respected line, and that the movement powering the new 36mm Twenty-4 Automatic is an existing caliber and workhorse for the brand: the 324S C automatic mechanical movement. According to Stern, the watch was almost five years in the making, as the brand adapted the existing movement to fit the smaller size, and as it worked tirelessly on case, bezel and bracelet designs. In fact, says Stern, “We threw away as many as forty prototypes in the making of this watch. It had to be perfect; it had to be Patek Philippe.”
Five versions of the new Twenty-4
There are five versions of the new watch, each with hours, minutes, sweep seconds and date display at 6 o’clock. Each features a bezel set with 160 Top Wesselton Pure diamonds, and has a different dial color. Crafted in either stainless steel or 18-karat gold, all of the Twenty-4 Automatic watches are finished with beautiful metal link bracelets with a new, patented fold-over clasp. There are two polished steel case and bracelet models, one with a midnight blue dial and another with a slate gray, gradient to black, sunburst dial, and three rose gold versions, including one with a brown sunburst dial, and one with a stunning ivory and silvered linen-effect motif of vertical and horizontal lines. The dials are chic and direct, with applied Arabic numerals and baton-style hands, all with SuperLumiNova® coating. The fifth model in the collection features the same linen dial and rose gold case; however, there are two rows of additional diamonds running on both sides of the bracelet from case lugs to clasp. In total, this model is set with 469 diamonds weighting 1.88 carats.
According to Patek, the concept is to create a watch for today’s women. The tagline, “Begin Your Own Tradition”, is geared to the self-confident modern woman and carried through in the advertising campaign: a lifestyle look that was shot in Rome by Dutch photographer Anton Corbijn. All watches are finished with a sapphire caseback to allow for viewing of the 217-part automatic movement, which offers 35 to 45 hours of power reserve. This movement is equipped with Patek Philippe’s Gyromax balance and Spiromax balance spring crafted in Silinvar, and carries the Patek Philippe Seal – attesting to its fine hand finishings.