The exclusive biennial charity auction event Only Watch returns for 2017. In a series that will run until the auction on November 11th, we’ll be exploring the singular watches that will be sold to the highest bidder. First up, the Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe Ref. 5208T-010.
What is Only Watch?
One of the world’s most renowned charity events, the biennial Only Watch auction is back for 2017. Every two years, the most prestigious watchmakers in the world take part in this unique occasion. Not only do the most coveted watch brands take part, but also, every timepiece is unique. Each company donates a one-off timepiece made exclusively for the auction. Under the patronage of His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco, this year’s Only Watch will take place on November 11th in Geneva, Switzerland — the powerhouse city of the haute horology world.
This premier charity auction raises money to finance research into Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Since the auction’s first edition in 2005, it has raised over 25 million euros to fund scientific and medical programs that seek to understand and tackle this debilitating disorder.
Among this year’s vast collection of unique timepieces up for grabs, many eyes are on the Patek Philippe watch. For Only Watch 2017, Patek Philippe has created and donated the Ref. 5208T-010. Taking inspiration from the Triple Complication Ref. 5208, originally released in 2011, this 42mm watch boasts similar features, however, is made of titanium — a material rarely used by Patek Philippe.
The Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe Unique Piece
Combining a minute repeater, a single pusher chronograph, and an instantaneous perpetual calendar, the Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe Ref. 5208T-010 is an ultra-complicated watch that is also powered by a self-winding mechanism. Made up of 719 parts, Patek Philippe demonstrate their dominance over the world of haute horology with an incredible combination of functions.
The Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe Ref. 5208T-010 features an 18K gold dial in blue with a guilloché carbon-like pattern carved by hand. In line with this Patek’s sporty look, a minute track in white decorates the watch face’s flange and is indicated by an extra thin central chronograph hand. Baton-shaped, gold-applied hour markers adorn the dial. And, coated with luminescence, the indices — along with the lume-filled hour and minute hands — ensure the watch’s legibility even in low light situations.
A 60-minute counter and a 12-hour counter sit respectively at 3 and 9 o’clock. Furthermore, a moon phase and seconds subdial can be found at 6 o’clock. And rather than a simple date window, this complex watch features three different apertures between 10 and 2 o’clock. These windows indicate the day, the date, and the month. Despite the amount of detail on the dial the watch’s design remains elegant and balanced. This is thanks in part to its use of a blue and white only color scheme.
Powering the Patek Philippe Ref. 5208T-010 is the Caliber R CH 27 PS QI. This self-winding mechanical movement includes a micro-rotor, enabling the minute repeater as well as the chronograph function. The chronograph is activated by a mono-pusher above the crown at 2 o’clock. This movement also drives the watch’s instantaneous perpetual calendar with day/night indication capabilities. Protected by a sapphire crystal caseback that ensures that the watch is not only water resistant, but also impervious to dust and humidity, haute horology aficionados will appreciate the window into the caliber’s elaborate mechanism.
How Much Will the Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe Unique Piece Sell For?
This Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe watch is expected to go for an incredible $932,000 to $1,139,000. Apart from owning this exclusive instrument, the watch buyer will also experience a special “Patek Philippe Day.” The new owner and a guest will be given a tour of the Manufacture’s Geneva-based workshops and a visit to the Patek Philippe museum. There’s also a private lunch with Thierry Stern, President of Patek Philippe.
While this is certainly a lot of money, let’s not forget that two years ago during the 2015 Only Watch event, the unique Patek Philippe Ref. 5016A-010 sold for more than $7 million! At the time, the sale of the Patek Philippe Ref. 5016A-010 set the world record for the most expensive wristwatch ever sold. Patek broke its own record yet again with the sale of the Patek Philippe ref. 1518 for $11 million in 2016!
For serious watch collectors that have access to serious wealth, this immense amount of money is a small price to pay to own an entirely unique Patek Philippe watch. Moreover, to receive a day where they can get up close and personal with the brand and a member of the Stern family — the owners of Patek Philippe since 1932 — makes it all the more special. Plus, with the large percentage of the auction price going to scientific research towards battling an incurable disorder, philanthropists with the means will undoubtedly bid on this exceptional piece. So this begs the question: will this new Only Watch 2017 Patek Philippe break another record?