The Exceptional Patek Philippe Annual Calendar Chronograph

 

When it was launched in 2006, the Patek Philippe Annual Calendar Chronograph in platinum won instant acclaim. Its unique style, defined by a prominent monocounter at six o’clock and three large calendar apertures made it instantly recognisable on the wrist. It also happened to be the Geneva-based manufacture's first self-winding chronograph, which alone was enough to make it one of the most coveted timepieces of the Patek Philippe portfolio. More than ten years later, the Patek Phillipe Annual Calendar Chronograph Ref. 5960/1A remains just as desirable, if a little controversial. Read on to discover why.

The Luxury Sports Watch                                                                                         

Although renowned for its highly complicated timepieces, Patek Philippe, is no stranger to the luxury sports watch market. In fact, the storied, Geneva-based brand was a major pioneer of the category, with the introduction of the casually elegant Nautilus line in 1976. Twenty years later, the attractively stylish Aquanaut was also endowed with a stainless steel case.

With very few exceptions, however, all other Patek Philippe men's wristwatches have been systematically cased in gold or platinum, which is what makes the Ref. 5960/1A such a seductive exception. For you see the “A” in 5960/1A, stands for acier, or steel in French, which is exactly what its case is crafted from. Combined with a silvery dial, it has become arguably one of the most desirable sports watches available from Patek Philippe, outside of the Nautilus collection.

Patek Philippe Ref. 5960/1A

Sized at 40.5 mm in diameter, the Ref. 5960/1A offers an all-metal aesthetic courtesy of an integrated stainless steel drop link bracelet. With a fluted crown at 3 o’clock set between two round push-buttons, this timepiece effortlessly blends classic tastes with a modern touch of sportiness.

Housed within the steel case is a two-tone ebony black and silvery opaline dial. Baton-shaped pointed hour markers in black oxidized white gold and matching hour and minute hands with luminous coating ensure this watch face offers a high-level of legibility even in lowlight conditions. The black and white theme is carried through to the flange, which showcases an ebony oxidized chronograph scale with 12 luminescent pearls denoting each five-minute interval.

In contrast to the watch’s overall monochromatic colour scheme, however, the central steel chronograph hand comes in a bold lacquered red that matches the “1” in the middle calendar aperture (the colour change signals the beginning of each month), as well as the minute-counter hand in the mono-counter at 6 o’clock. As a sub-dial that integrates a 60-minute counter with a 12-hour register, this feature also boasts an hour-counter scale on a black oxidized white gold disc.

Completing the dial’s design are the three distinctive and contoured frames around the calendar displays, which mark out the day, date, and month, at 10, 12, and 2 o’clock respectively. As an Annual Calendar, this watch only needs to be manually corrected by one day on March 1, as it is capable of automatically adjusting for months with 30 days without interference from its owner.

Providing the power to the Patek Philippe Ref. 5960/1A is the Calibre CH 28-520 IRM QA 24H. Visible through the sapphire caseback, this in-house movement offers flyback chronograph functionality, an Annual Calendar, as well as power reserve and day/night indications. The +/- power reserve indicator can be found beneath the date aperture at 12 o’clock, while the day/night indicator is integrated into the mono-counter at 6.

Beating at a frequency of 28,800 semi-oscillations per hour (4 Hz), this movement guarantees constant balance amplitude, hence high rate accuracy. A heavy central rotor in 21-carat gold winds the watch automatically, while Patek Philippe’s patented Spiromax balance spring made of Silinvar is another innovative feature, making this a prime example of tradition merged with innovation.

Thanks to Patek Philippe’s intrinsic understanding of haute horology, this watch brings together the perfect mix of urban elegance and technical prowess. A rare example of a complicated men’s stainless steel Patek Philippe watch, this instrument has quickly found favour amongst watch aficionados and connoisseurs.

To enquire about adding the Patek Philippe Ref. 5960/1A to your collection, please visit our Winsor Bishop Norwich boutique or submit an expression of interest online.