Congratulations to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II !
We have been celebrating this week as Queen Elizabeth II has beaten Queen Victoria's record as the UK's longest serving monarch. Despite our current Queen winning 27% of votes in a YouGov popularity poll for The Sunday Times, both do share certain similarities - one being the purchase of a beautiful Patek Philippe watch during their reign.
Earlier this year these were showcased at the Patek Philippe Royal Collection Grand Exhibition London 2015. In 1851, at the Great Exhibition in London’s Hyde Park, Queen Victoria acquired one of Patek Philippe’s first keyless watches. She was attracted to Patek Philippe’s innovative keyless winding system, and chose a powder-blue pocket watch.
Patek Philippe, No. 4536, Queen Victoria’s watch
Queen Victoria started a trend and demand for Patek Philippe watches were high among royalty across Europe. This has continued ever since and at the 2015 Grand Exhibition, Patek Philippe (Ref. 4975/1G) belonging to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was also exhibited.
The beautiful Patek Philippe (4975/1G) belonging to Queen Elizabeth II
In my last post about women’s watches I discussed Patek Philippe’s first wristwatch sold to to Hungarian Countess Koscowicz in 1876. I thought as there are some wonderful Patek Philippe watches available in our store at the moment, it would be interesting to look a little into the history of this independent watch manufacturer.
Patek Philippe is in fact the last family-owned independent watch manufacturer in Geneva, and they produce some of the finest timepieces in the world. Adrien Philippe joined Antoine Norbert de Patek in 1845 and since their partnership, Patek Philippe has continued to maintain clear, high quality values.
Patek Philippe has a long history of mastering all watch complications, and therefore has had a variety of fans over the years. Not only has it been much loved by royalty across Europe, more modern fans include the Dalai Lama (who got his from President Kennedy), and Brad Pitt who favours the Nautilus.
Brad Pitt spotted wearing Patek Philippe Nautilus (Ref. 5711/1A)
In 1989 Petek Philippe made one of the most complicated watches ever made for the brand’s 150th anniversary - the Calibre 89 (Ref. 3974) was the most complicated wristwatch of its time. This made it even clearer that innovation was one of the main values of the company. With an impressive repertoire of more than 80 patents, Patek Philippe have and still continue to push the boundaries of watchmaking.