One of the bedrocks of Patek Philippe’s horological heritage is its classic dress watch- the Calatrava. A necessary foundation piece for any Haute Horlogerie brand, the dress watch is a must and with the Calatrava, Patek Philippe continues to build on its rich tradition to this day.
For a bit of historical context, we go back to the ’30s when Charles and Henri Stern purchased the Patek Philippe brand. To revamp the manufacture, the first model they produced was, of course, the Calatrava. The Ref. 96 came in 1932, at a time when wristwatches were beginning to take over pocket watches and it was a move that cemented their status as one of the eminent watch brands of the world. To this day, the Stern family still owns Patek Philippe and you can tell that the Calatrava is still a staple in the brand’s lineup.
Since then, there have been many iterations of the classic Calatrava, from varying case sizes to dial styles, with this particular here example being one of the more unique and contemporary offerings from Patek Philippe as of late. This Calatrava Ref. 6007A is a 1,000-piece limited edition introduced in 2019 to celebrate the completion of Patek’s new production building in Plan-les-Ouates, Geneva.
Now if you’re wondering why this reference looks familiar, the design language of this Ref. 6007A is actually somewhat reminiscent of the unique piece Ref. 5208T Grand Complication (titanium case, minute repeater, perpetual calendar, chronograph) donated to Only Watch 2017 and achieved a final price of CHF 6.2 million. Obviously, these two references both reside in different leagues in terms of pricing and technical complexity, but what they both share is a design DNA that consists of a similar dial pattern and color palette.
Sized at 40mm x 9.07mm, the Ref. 6007A’s stainless steel case is clearly made for any modern wrist. It also shares its DNA with the Ref. 6006G, albeit a tad larger and made of stainless steel – a material that is known to be generally more expensive and collectible than gold when it comes to pieces from Patek Philippe. The case is also entirely polished and features sapphire crystals at the front and for its caseback, which has a unique decoration showing the Maison’s signature Calatrava cross and a celebratory inscription “New Manufacture 2019”.
The dial on the Ref. 6007A has an interesting mix of several different textures and executions. Sitting behind the front crystal is a gorgeous grey-blue colored dial with a very unique sector-style portion at its center, which is embossed with what Patek calls a “carbon style” pattern resembling a basket weave style motif. This specific area is then circled by a railroad track which is followed by applied Arabic numerals in white gold and filled with Super-Luminova. You will also find a date aperture at the 3 o ‘clock position. The one thing I found Patek to have executed very well is the dial proportions, as it is sized appropriately relative to the 40mm case size. As for the business end of the Ref. 6007A, it is powered by an in-house, automatic Cal. 324 SC (stands for Seconde Central) which is also used in Aquanaut and Nautilus watches. It features 213 parts, a 21-carat gold rotor, and a power reserve of 35 – 45 hours.
For anyone who desires a modern Calatrava with a contemporary, dressy yet sporty aesthetic, as well as a certain degree of rarity, I’d say this Ref. 6007/1A, 1,000-piece limited edition would make a compelling choice to consider.