Widely regarded as one of the finest watchmakers in history, Patek Philippe has certainly etched it's place in horological history. Here we highlight some of our favorite vintage references currently being offered on The Keystone right now.
Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar, ref. 3940
The Patek Philippe reference 3940 was the first of the brands modern perpetual calendars and arguably one of their finest. Released in 1986, this perpetual calendar quickly became an instant classic. The first release of the 3940 was limited to yellow gold, although later series included white and rose gold as well as platinum. There are a few variations in the dials, which are referred to as “series.” We are currently offering a highly sought after First Series 3940 here, as well as a later 3940 featuring day/night indicator in the left subdial here.
Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar Chronograph, ref. 3970
Released at the same time as the reference 3940 was the Perpetual Calendar Chronograph reference 3970. Patek Philippe has made a name for itself creating some of the worlds best perpetual calendar chronographs and auction houses have set new records selling them. The reference 3970 is a staple in the long lineage of Patek perpetual calendar chronos and deserves all of the respect it gets and then some. This reference was produced in white, yellow and rose gold as well as platinum. It is very wearable at 36mm, 1.5mm smaller than it’s processor the 2499. Similar to the 3940, there are a number of “series,” with variations in the hands, casebacks and other components (more about this here in a great article by Hodinkee). We are currently offering a Second Series yellow gold 3970 on a bracelet here and a later yellow gold 3970 here as well as a platinum 3970 here and a waterproof platinum 3970EP.
Patek Philippe Calatrava, ref. 570
The Patek Philippe reference 570 is a favorite among vintage collectors. Known for it’s simplicity and elegance as well as it’s ideal size, this reference has proven to be timeless. The 570 is one of the only watches that is as wearable and size appropriate today as it was in the 1930s when it was first introduced. One could argue that this is THE vintage Calatrava reference. The 570 measures 35.5mm (often listed at 36mm) in width and wears very well. There are a few variations in the dials, some with center seconds and some with sub-seconds. We are currently offering a yellow gold Calatrava 570 with sub-seconds here.
Patek Philippe Aquanaut, ref. 5066
I hate to say it, but the 1990s are now being referred to as vintage. The beauty of that is a new class of vintage watches that may have felt slightly outdated are now feeling perfectly vintaged (also see Zenith Daytona). This is the case with these early Patek Philippe Aquanauts. The Aquanaut was released in 1997 and in those first few references produced was the 5066, a beautiful mid-sized steel sport watch that could be worn on a bracelet or leather strap. We are currently offering a 5066 with a black dial on a bracelet here. We are also offering a very rare, Japan edition 5066 with a blue dial with yellowish hour markers here. It is believed that fewer than 500 of these Japan editions were produced with only a few ever hitting the market.
Patek Philippe Calatrava, ref. 3445
The Patek Philippe Calatrava reference 3445 is an underrated reference, in our opinion. This reference has the elegant, simplicity consistent with these vintage Calatravas, but also features an 27- 460 M automatic movement and a date display. At 35mm the 3445 wears very well, with beautiful sharp edges, a slight stepped bezel and a crown that is partially tucked away in the case. We are currently offering a beautiful white gold reference 3445 here. We are also offering an interesting yellow gold 3445 gift to an employee of Aramco, one of the largest oil companies in the world.
Patek Philippe Calatrava, ref. 3796
Bonus: We wanted to keep it to 5 references, but couldn’t help ourselves. The Patek Philippe 3796 is incarnation of the Patek reference 96 and is almost identical to the eye. The movement, however, was upgraded to improve accuracy. We love Patek Philippe watches in rose gold with pink dials and are currently offering a rose gold, pink dial reference 3796 here as well as one in rose gold, pink dial retailed by Tiffany & Co. with original receipt and warranty here. We are also currently offering a white gold reference 3796 here.