On Sunday, @patekphilippe’a Instagram account blew up with posts on their $30k Calatrava Weekly Calendar. I’m thinking that’s because A) Calatrava Weekly Calendar sales are weak or B) their social media maven woke up from a coma. Bottom line: Patek reckons the watch wearing gen pop (as Govberg’s Tim calls it) needs a wake-up call on the CWC’s existence. Here’s how Patek’s promoting the product . . .
Patek wants the watchiverse to know that the Weekly Calendar is the only steel timepiece in the current Calatrava collection. The assertion comes after recent media focus on how hard it is to buy any other steel Patek. Eight-year waiting list anyone? No? Then how about this?
Patek also wants us to admire the typography on the Calatrava Weekly Calendar’s silvery opaline dial. It’s based on one of their watchmaker’s handwriting, of all things. Perfectly crisp imperfectly formed lettering? Go figure.
Actually, it makes sense. This CWC comes straight from Nostalgialand Safari Park, complete with old school box-type sapphire glass. The typography screams HAND MADE — in the same way Disneyland’s Main Street screams ROSY PAST.
The weird thing — other that that — is the featured complication. What watch wearer needs a weekly calendar? Patek touts the Never Been Done Befoa display as “a complication that is decidedly practical in a globalized world.” Huh?
Even if the Weekly Calendar is a needless affectation, which it is, at least it’s accurate. “Every 5 to 6 years, a year will contain 53 weeks instead of 52,” Patek reminds us, “thus the 53-graduation scale on the Ref. 5212A considers years with an extra week.” I should hope so!
Just in case you thought this watch was made specifically to sneak in on Instagram’s throwback Thursday, note that a new movement beats beneath its 1920’s-style dial.
“The caliber 26-330 is a substantial evolution from the previous self-winding caliber 324. The inclusion of a stop-seconds mechanism improves hand-setting precision by stopping the balance wheel.” Because every second counts. Per week.
Patek sells 19 Calatrava variants. Most of them are timeless minimalist masterpieces (though not literally). One is batshit crazy (Haute Joaillerie). Quite how the wildly nostalgic Weekly Calendar fits into the Calatrava stable is unclear. But it will sell. In fact, it’s a steel.