Monochrome Watches
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The Patek Philippe Desk Clock Only Watch 2021 Doesn’t Break Record But Still Sells at CHF 9.5 Million

Not a world record... but still an impressive price.

| By Brice Goulard | 3 min read |

As Only Watch 2021 continues and following a succession of impressive prices achieved, such as the AP Royal Oak for 3.1 Million and the F.P. Journe for 4.5 Million, it’s now time to talk about the expected star of the show, Patek Philippe of course. In 2019, Patek Philippe’s one-of-a-kind Ref. 6300A-010 Grandmaster Chime in a steel case smashed all world records as the most expensive watch ever sold at auction, raising CHF 31 million for charity. For this year’s event, Patek Philippe donated the Complicated Desk Clock (Ref. 27001M-001) inspired by a desk clock delivered to James Ward Packard, the American automobile magnate, in 1923. But being quite special in looks (I know, it’s subjective) and not being a wristwatch, it was somehow predictable that the previous record wouldn’t break… but after a quite long battle in the room and over the phone, we’re still talking about CHF 9,500,000, and all for charity.

Patek Philippe Only Watch 2021 complicated desk clock 27001M-001

James Ward Packard commissioned around 18 complicated watches from Patek Philippe in the first two decades of the 20th century. One of these commissions was Packard’s desk clock, an ornately decorated timepiece equipped with perpetual calendar functions, a moon phase display and a double-barrel 8-day power reserve. Patek Philippe’s desk clock for Only Watch 2021 also features a perpetual calendar and a moon phase but adds a peripheral week-number display and a leap year and power reserve indicator.

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Patek Philippe Only Watch 2021 complicated desk clock 27001M-001

The cabinet housing the clock, which is inclined to provide a clear view of the dial, is a work of art in itself. Measuring 164.6mm x 125mm x 76.3mm, the case is made in sterling silver with American walnut inlays and vermeil decorative details. Gold vermeil refers to .925 sterling silver plated with a thick layer of gold and is used to craft the sphinx-like creatures and rosettes on the corners of the case and other decorative flourishes. On the periphery of the dial are the week numbers highlighted with a red rectangular frame and a railway track for the seconds. The hours and minutes are off-centred in a sub-dial with black Roman numerals at 12 o’clock and two rectangular apertures for the day of the week and month are in the centre of the dial. The moon phase indication at 6 o’clock is framed by the date, and the two smaller apertures on either side are for the leap years. The 31-day power reserve indicator is placed between the day and month apertures.

Patek Philippe Only Watch 2021 complicated desk clock 27001M-001

Patek Philippe has specifically developed and manufactured a new hand-wound movement – calibre 86-135 PEND IRM Q SE – to power the desk clock ref. 27001M-001. With a precision rate of -1/+1 seconds per day, the calibre delivers a 31-day power reserve and is wound via a crank placed under the top cover of the clock.

During the Only Watch 2021 charity auction, all eyes were of course looking at lot 41, the timepiece offered by Patek Philippe – known as the record-breaker at almost all editions… and this year, once again, the brand managed to make huge numbers, yet far from the previous CHF 31 Million of 2019. Indeed, the Patek Philippe Complicated Desk Clock 27001M-001 for Only Watch 2021 sells for CHF 9,500,000. which, objectively, remains a pretty impressive number.

More details on the piece here, in our introducing article.

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