It was in 1999 that Patek Philippe unveiled one of their best-selling models to date: the Twenty-4 ladies’ watch. And while the Swiss watchmaking brand has recently added new round models to the collection, the original rectangular-shaped Twenty-4 is still a classic choice as a woman’s luxury watch. Join us as we take a closer look at this flagship Patek Philippe ladies’ watch. And don’t forget, Mother’s Day will be here before you know it and this watch would make an excellent gift.
Patek Philippe’s History Of Making Ladies’ Watch
Patek Philippe has had a long history of making watches for women. In fact, the first watches registered in Patek, Czapek & Cie’s (the company’s first name) sales archives were sold to Madame Goscinska in 1839. These were the days before wristwatches when women wore timepieces in the form of elaborate pendant watches. Queen Victoria saw the company’s innovative timepieces with a keyless winding system at the Great Exhibition in London in 1851 and selected a beautiful powder blue pocket watch set with diamonds for herself.
What’s more, the company’s first wristwatch (and many maintain the world’s first wristwatch) was commissioned by Countess Koscewicz of Hungary in 1868. In 1916, Patek Philippe made the first complicated ladies’ wristwatch with a five-minute repeater. It must be highlighted that this was the brand’s first wristwatch with a chiming mechanism–and it was explicitly developed for a woman.
Since then, Patek Philippe has offered plenty of ladies watches. There are ladies’ versions of Calatrava watches, Golden Ellipse watches, Nautilus watches, Aquanaut watches, in addition to complications like Travel Time, moonphase, Annual Calendar and so on. However, just before the start of the new millennium, Patek Philippe carved out a collection exclusively dedicated to their female clientele.
The Original Patek Philippe Twenty-4 Ladies’ Watch
When it was launched in 1999, the Patek Philippe Twenty-4 became an immediate hit. Positioned for the modern woman, the Art Deco-inspired rectangular shape of the watch and its link bracelet spoke to the tastes of the time. What’s more, its quartz movement was easy to maintain and the entry-level price point (for Patek Philippe) of the steel versions made the women’s luxury watch accessible to a larger audience. It was meant to be the watch that women wore all the time, whether at work, on the weekends, or during formal events.
Patek Philippe makes the Twenty-4 ladies watch in stainless steel and rose gold. The stainless steel Twenty-4 versions (ref. 4910) are by far the more popular option and come with a choice of black, white, blue, or gray dials. The Twenty-4 watches sport 25.1 x 30 mm rectangular cases, set with a total of 36 diamonds framing the right and left sides of the dial.
The winding crowns of the Twenty-4 are set with black onyx stones too. There are also ten diamond hour markers on the two-handed dial, accompanied by VI and XII Roman numerals. While there are a few Twenty-4 models (rose gold versions) with leather straps, it is the link metal bracelet with the fold-0ver clasp that adds to the Patek watch’s recognizable streamlined silhouette.
The New Patek Philippe Twenty-4 Automatic
In 2018, Patek Philippe unveiled a new batch of Twenty-4 ladies’ watches to join the original editions. While they may share similar names and are housed in the same collection, these two iterations of Patek Philippe’s flagship women’s watches are remarkably different.
Not only do the new Twenty-4 Automatic watches run on self-winding movements (Caliber 324 S C) but they also feature round 36 mm cases, luminous Arabic numerals on the dial, three hands, and a date window. Like the original Twenty-4, Patek also makes the fresh editions in stainless steel and rose gold, all complete with 160 diamonds set into the bezel. Furthermore, carrying on the characteristic bracelets from past models, the new Twenty-4 Automatic watches are also fitted with metal link bracelets.
As you can imagine, the enhancements that the latest Twenty-4 Automatic ladies’ watches underwent has dramatically risen their price points too–more than double in fact for the simplest stainless steel edition. Thankfully, the more affordable classic Twenty-4 options are still available and when purchased pre-owned from Gray & Sons, their price tags are even more attractive.