<< Previous Topic | Next Topic >>Return to Index  

Press Release: Patek Philippe "Salon", Geneva Re-Opening

November 17 2006 at 5:40 AM

SuitbertW  (Login wsw_de)

The full press release:

Inauguration of the Patek Philippe Salon
Patek Philippe, Geneva
November 14, 2006

After two years of construction and a total renovation of its historic company headquarters, Patek Philippe inaugurates its thoroughly redesigned salon on Rue du Rhône in Geneva. The new interior expresses the synergies between tradition and innovation, the two key attributes of the eminent brand.
In mid-November 2006, Patek Philippe festively inaugurates its new “Salons Patek Philippe.”
This reopening marks the end of the company’s third major construction project – first, in 1996, the completion of the ultramodern production center in Plan-les-Ouates followed by the creation of the Patek Philippe Museum in 2001. The renovation of Patek Philippe’s historic headquarters between Rue du Rhône and Quai Général-Guisan reaffirms the manufacture’s determination to welcome its customers in an environment that reflects the excellence its watches.
A prestigious address for horological excellence. Many surprises await visitors to the six-story building, which is Patek Philippe’s original home and is now categorized as a national monument. Down to the very last detail, it was modeled as an homage to the art of horology that beautifully combines venerable traditions with state-of the-art technologies. The redesign reflects a deep respect for heritage and for the passion that drives creativity. Its ambiance appeals to all senses. Customers will find significantly larger
showrooms, now on two floors, the carefully restored historic “Salon Napoleon III,“ and, on the upper floors, a number of modularly variable rooms for exhibitions and other events with a breathtaking view of the Lake of Geneva basin and its surroundings. On the Rue du Rhône side, where the store entrance is located, five windows showcase the current Patek Philippe collections. The windows are decorated with themes of the program of Geneva’s Grand Théâtre, emphasizing the manufacture’s cultural partnership with the famous opera house.
To underscore the significance of the inauguration, an exhibition from November 20, 2006, to February 3, 2007, will present some 160 paintings of Lake of Geneva landscapes from 1880 to 1950. The selection reflects the personal favorites of Patek Philippe’s President Philippe Stern and will be on display on the third and fourth floors of the building. The title of the exhibition, open to the public on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 2 to 5 p.m., is “Tableaux du Léman“.
The redesign of the Patek Philippe showrooms was entrusted to respected specialists of global stature, among them the chief set designer and permanent assistant to a famous choreograph, an expert for processing cordovan leather, and the same conservator who once restored the crystal chandeliers of the Versailles Palace. The company even enlisted the services of Genevan perfumer Daniel André, a graduate of the prestigious Givaudan Perfumery School; he was asked to develop a unique fragrance that would permeate the entire building as a sensory symbol of excellence.

Key dates of the Patek Philippe building

In 1853, Patek Philippe moved to the site of the building that now houses the newly renovated showrooms. In the 14 years since the company's founding in 1839, the manufactory had become so successful that it had to move from its first address on Quai de Bergues to the other side of the Rhône River. After continued growth, the company soon ran out of space on Quai Générale-Guisan (formerly Grand-Quai). To accommodate its expansion plans, the manufacture acquired the current building (1891) and commissioned Jacques Elisée-Goss to design the new building as a salon and watchmaking workshop. The famous architect had previously completed two masterpieces, the Hotel National (1875, now Palais Wilson) and the Grand Théatre (1876). Mr. Elisée-Goss was able to convince Patek Philippe’s management that
the building should be completely overhauled and furbished with the latest technological improvements. Thus, the building, constructed in 1892 on an area of 1200 m2, was fitted with revolutionary developments such as a hydroelectric power generation facility and a central heating system that allowed individual temperature control in every room. In 1908, an additional floor was added and a large electric precision clock was mounted on the façade. It was connected to the same master controller that synchronized all public clocks throughout the city. A number of other renovation projects were conducted between 1935 and 1950, resulting in the loss of the courtyard that separated the wings of the building on Rue du Rhône and Grand-Quai. Despite these efforts, the shortage of space became so acute that in 1964 the production department had to move out and relocate to a new building in Geneva’s Jonction district. At this point the company headquarters accommodated the administrative staff, the customer service offices, a few studios for smithing and gemsetting, movement casing, and historic watch restoration activities. The sales area (Salons Patek Philippe) was on the ground floor, accessible from Rue du Rhône. It was completely renovated in 1971 and subsequently remodeled and modernized several times until the company decided in 2003 to essentially rebuild the entire property. In the meantime, since 1996, all production departments were
moved to Plan-les-Ouates on the outskirts of Geneva, and the historic pieces as well as the workshop archives were moved to the Patek Philippe Museum on Rue des Vieux-Grenadiers in Geneva’s Plainpalais quarter. After moving the salon to a temporary space on Place Longemalle 1 in 2004, it was time to begin renovation.

The historic Patek Philippe building, lakeside view, Quai Général-

Fifth floor: Art Déco Salon dedicated to welcoming VIP clients (Photo
Alban Kakulya, Strates Lausanne)

Ground floor : collection showroom, showcases (Photo Alban Kakulya,
Strates Lausanne)

This message has been edited by wsw_de on Nov 17, 2006 8:49 AM

 Respond to this message   

(Login wsw_de)

Ltd. anniversary ref. 5105 and ref. 5565

November 17 2006, 6:21 AM 

Press release:

Two limited-edition anniversary watches

As a surprise to commemorate the inauguration of the new Salon Patek Philippe on Rue du Rhône, the workshops created two anniversary timepieces that are sure to go down in the annals of horological history: the Ref. 5105 in platinum and the Ref. 5565 in steel. Both
watches, bearing the inimitable Patek Philippe signature, are as exclusive as they are rare. The first model is limited to 100 watches, the second to 300. They embody the aesthetic quality and
technical perfection that Patek Philippe has systematically and unfalteringly endorsed since the company was founded 167 years ago.
Befitting of the style of the workshops – superb traditional artisanship, technical innovation, and discreet yet refined elegance – that each of these small masterpieces bridges the past to the
present in its own subtle way. Both watches are witnesses of the legendary timelessness for which the brand stands. The two new models will remind future generations of the inauguration of the renovated Salon Patek Philippe, a milestone in the history of watchmaking.

The Ref. 5105 in platinum:

revival of a lost treasure The inaugural Ref. 5105 has particularly intimate ties with Patek Philippe’s headquarters. In fact, it owes its existence to the discovery of a hidden treasure: one hundred caliber 9-90 movements dating back to 1959 were found in an old wooden chest on the sixth floor in 1996
when the watchmaking departments moved to Plan-les-Ouates. These venerable calibers inspired the creation of this inaugural model, the first to be endowed with an authentically historic movement. To match the pedigree of the movement, an equally distinguished case was
designed. the Ref. 5105 reflects the art deco design of the Ref. 492 presented in 1936. Its rectangular case with tiered flanks and a cambered back was fitted with the tonneau-shaped,
manually wound caliber 9-90 that debuted in 1934. Platinum was chosen for the case because of the historical significance of this inaugural timepiece. With the subtle interplay of satin finishing and mirror gloss between the bezel and caseband, Ref. 5105 is just as visually
compelling as its gold predecessor. The silver-plated, satin-finished dial is an authentic replica of the 1936 original. It has a railwaytrack scale on the periphery, a subsidiary seconds dial at 6 o’clock, the Roman numeral XII, and applied white-gold, baton-style hour markers that with the white-gold hands assure excellent
legibility. The completely redesigned watch preserves the style of its ancestor with broad, polished bevels accentuating the silhouette of its domed sapphire crystal. The sapphire-crystal
back, also contoured, reveals the unique movement of earlier times, resurrected from a decades-long hiatus. With the newest techniques available, the movement was fully disassembled, lubricated, readjusted and then cased. The Ref. 5105 is worn on a hand-stitched
alligator strap secured with a historic platinum buckle that is highly coveted among collectors. Every watch is delivered in a classic brown leather case crafted explicitly for this anniversary

Technical data

Calatrava Ref. 5105 in platinum
Movement: Caliber 9-90 PS
Tonneau-shaped manually wound mechanical movement
Width: 18 mm
Length: 25.6 mm
Height: 3.65 mm
Number of parts: 152
Number of jewels: 18
Power reserve: Max. 45 hours
Balance: Screw balance with index regulator
Frequency: 19,800 semi-oscillations/hour (2.75 Hz)
Balance spring: Breguet
Balance spring stud: Adjustable
Crown: Two-position crown:
- Pulled out: to set the time
- Pushed in: to wind the watch
Displays: Hours, minutes, small seconds with subsidiary dial at 6 o'clock
Hallmark: Geneva Seal (two hallmarks one on bridge/one on mainplate)
Limited edition of 100 watches
Case: 950 platinum, domed sapphire crystal with beveled edges and
contoured sapphire-crystal caseback, diamond between lugs at 6
Two-tiered case flank, partially polished, partially satin-finished
Knurled crown
Screw back
Water-resistant to 30 meters
Case dimensions: Width: 25.20 mm
Length: 46 mm
Height: 10.95 mm
Width between lugs: 17 mm
Dial: Silver-plated and satin-finished with railway-track minute scale
Subsidiary seconds dial, black printed
11 baton-style hour markers in 18K white gold
Roman numeral XII in 18K white gold
Alpha hands in black nickel-plated white gold for hours, minutes
and seconds
Strap: Navy blue, large-scaled alligator, hand-stitched, with historic 14-
mm prong buckle in platinum

The Ref. 5565 in steel: timelessly modern

An inaugural watch in steel is indeed a rarity. Its cool, smooth surface symbolizes the modern era with a host of practical and enduring inventions, among them stainless steel. The design of the watch, inspired by Patek Philippe’s 1938 Ref. 565 wristwatch, corresponds to the cool, understated nimbus of the material. Initially this watch was fitted with the famous manually wound caliber 12-120 launched in 1937, and it had a subsidiary seconds dial. Starting in 1942, it was relaunched as a sweep-seconds model, cased with the next-generation 12-120 SC caliber first produced in 1938. The 2006 inaugural watch borrows from its predecessor the
remarkable sleekness of the two-part case in which the bezel and the caseband constitute one part. The silver-plated two-tone dial — with a vertical satin finish in the middle, subsidiary seconds, black nickel-plated Arabic numerals in gold, and baton-style luminescent hands — is a model of legibility. Its manufacture movement, held in high esteem by connoisseurs, is Patek Philippe’s caliber 215 PS that was developed in the early 1970s. It ticks discreetly behind the
screwed steel back that is decorated with an engraving of the Patek Philippe building on Rue du Rhone and the inscription “1839 – 1892 – 2006” to commemorate the three milestone years. It is worn on a brown, large-scaled alligator strap with a historic steel buckle appreciated by collectors because of its comfortable fit.
Each of the 300 watches of this inaugural edition comes in a stately box made of Madagascan ebony. It has a glass window with a silkscreen rendition of the Patek Philippe building and a stainless steel frame, also engraved with the “1839 – 1892 – 2006” trilogy.
Months of meticulous craftsmanship have been invested in these two exceptional 2006-edition watches. Both technically and aesthetically, they exhibit a degree of perfection that a true connoisseur will instantly recognize as a hallmark of the “Patek spirit.” The owners of one of these commemorative timepieces can rest assured that their descendants in 100 years or more will wear it as proudly as they do today.

Calatrava Ref. 5565 in steel
Movement: Caliber 215 PS
Manually wound mechanical movement
Diameter: 21.90 mm
Height: 2.55 mm
Number of parts: 130
Number of jewels: 18
Power reserve: Max. 45 hours
Balance: Gyromax
Frequency: 28,800 semi-oscillations/hour (4 Hz)
Balance spring: Flat
Balance spring stud: Adjustable
Crown: Two-position crown:
- Pulled out: to set the time
- Pushed in: to wind the watch
Displays: Hours, minutes, small seconds subsidiary dial at 6 o'clock
Hallmark: Geneva Seal
Limited edition of 300 watches
Case: Stainless steel
Screw back
Back engraved with view of building from Quai Général-Guisan
and with inscription of the three milestone years 1839, 1892, and
Water-resistant to 30 meters
Case dimensions: Diameter: 36 mm
Height: 7.45 mm
Width between lugs: 19 mm
Dial: Two-tone dial, silver plated, vertical satin finish in the center
Subsidiary seconds dial, black printed
Baton-style hour and minute hands in 18K white gold, black
nickel-plated and with luminous coating
Baton-style seconds hand in black nickel-plated gold
Strap: Brown, large-scaled alligator, hand-stitched, with 16-mm prong
buckle in stainless steel.

29.Nov. Typo corrected re. "Geneva seal on cal. 215"

This message has been edited by wsw_de on Nov 29, 2006 8:12 AM

 Respond to this message   
  << Previous Topic | Next Topic >>Return to Index  

GO TO: WatchRap: general watch discussion | Best of ThePuristS | News Central

Automotive | Belles Lettres | Pen & Writing Instruments | Photography and Camera equipment | Travel | Wine, Food, other Epicurean Delights

Trading Zone | Home Page

Audemars Piguet | Blancpain | Breguet | Chopard | Girard Perregaux | Glashutte Original | Jaeger-LeCoultre | Jaquet Droz | F.P. Journe | A. Lange & Söhne | Richard Mille | Patek Philippe | Daniel Roth | Ulysse Nardin | Vacheron Constantin | Harry Winston | AHCI and independent haute horlogerie