Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart

Adjacent the impressive Patek Philippe stand at this year’s Baselworld, were gigantic images of the new Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication presented in two dial variants, a “silvery white” dial or “blue sunburst” dial. It was the sky-like hue which immediately called to me as I craned my neck to admire the details of the watch.


Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication

 

I still recall Elton John and Kiki Dee singing the song, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” back in the 1970s. The title of the tune seems apt when I look at this latest timepiece from Patek Philippe. I will return to the rationale for this comment later.

 

Patek Philippe is a brand which engages with the purist’s heart. Patek create timepieces harnessing beautiful craftsmanship and peerless style that retain eye-appeal despite the onset of years. I regularly wear my own Gondolo in white gold and feel a sense of well-being when I look at its handsome lines. My Patek breathes on my wrist, is worn with regularity and does not reside in a sterile bank vault, still clad in its packaging; that is the domain of a heartless investor.

 

A beautiful watch should be seen in public. It will acquire a patina, and yes, the odd superficial scratch, but that all adds to its character.

 

A broken heart

I could understand someone gutsily devouring numerous Patek Philippe timepieces, they are so delectable. However, that would be a shame as they should be slowly savoured. Each nuance of their gorgeous torsos should be patiently appreciated.

 

A few years ago I fell for the spellbinding charms of a Patek Philippe 10 Day Tourbillon Ref 5101G with white gold case and gorgeous blue dial. I recall seeing it in a retailer’s window and feeling awestruck at its sublime appearance.

 

I remember tallying up my savings in my head and contemplated which watches, from my collection, I could trade in to mitigate the capital outlay.

 

In all of my excitement, I failed to notice the word “Tourbillon” located on the subdial displaying subsidiary seconds. I bounded in to the retailer like an over-exuberant puppy and as the shop assistant brought over the pulchritudinous timepiece, my serendipitous mood transcended into melancholy. I immediately new that the word “Tourbillon” would push the watch far away from my financial grasp.

 

Even now, the words of Elton and Kiki still ring in my ears every time I see an image of this beautiful watch.

 

Similar design language

The 5101G does share a similar appearance to the 5100G “10 Day”, albeit the latter has a swallow style caseband. The 5100G, offers more accessible pricing and is now on my lengthy wish list.

 

The styling of the 5100G is Art Deco, a period of design which continues to proffer much appeal to this day.

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication - front

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication

Adjacent the impressive Patek Philippe stand at this year’s Baselworld, were gigantic images of the new Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication presented in two dial variants, a “silvery white” dial or “blue sunburst” dial. It was the sky-like hue which immediately called to me as I craned my neck to admire the details of the watch.

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indicatio

The model is presented in a white gold case. This wonderfully suits the restrained, dignified persona of the watch. The new 5200G has an effortless grace which obviates the need for excessive gestures or attention grabbing antics. It reminds me of a naturally beautiful lady, who does not need to reveal too much flesh but garners admiring glances merely by her presence.

 

The dimensions, 46.90 x 35.20 mm, should appeal to a broad audience. Whilst larger than some Patek models, the sizing does not subscribe to the ice-hockey puck styles which have proved popular in recent years with some brands. Patek Philippe does not succumb to fickle fashion but creates watches which retain relevance for generations to come. This is borne-out by the feverish excitement exampled in auction houses around the globe as the discerning collectors seek to secure a rare classic from the Genevan maison.

 

Cutting-edge know-how

The Caliber 28-20 REC 8J PS IRM C J movement is hand-wound and bestows an impressive power-reserve of 192 hours. This is quite remarkable as the watch has several functions all of which consume energy.

 

Towards the upper portion of the dial is a power-reserve indicator, whereas at the southerly aspect of the dial, the day, date and subsidiary seconds are displayed. The day and date change instantaneously at midnight, taking less than three milliseconds to change. This attention to detail is superb, however, it does quaff energy with a prodigious thirst. It is therefore remarkable that the power reserve is 192 hours.

 

The reason the 5200G has such an impressive power reserve is due to two key-factors, namely, twin barrels and the use of state of the art silicon within the movement.

 

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication - Caliber 28-20 REC 8J PS IRM C J

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication - Caliber 28-20 REC 8J PS IRM C J

 

Silicon components are not affected by magnetism, do not corrode, can be produced in unusual shapes and, particularly relevant in this instance, confer low-friction hence mitigating wear and reducing energy consumption. Indeed, the friction is so low that the lever and escape wheel require no lubrication.

 

Some will argue that traditional materials are best and the fragility of silicon has been voiced as a concern by some. However, based on Patek’s reputation and the undeniable benefits of the material, the use of silicon would not dissuade me from purchasing a 5200G.

 

Traditionalists are well-served

I have an obsession with finissage and Patek Philippe sates my fetishism for finely executed bridge work.

 

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication - caseback

 

The bridges are adorned with Côtes de Genève motif, the jewel sinks are polished to perfection and the screw slots are peerless in their execution. Towards the bottom of the movement, viewed via the exhibition back, is a “trompe l’oeil” going train bridge. At first glance it looks like three separate bridges, however, it is actually one. It provides a stable balance cock for the balance wheel and balance spring but, moreover, it further examples Patek’s prodigious talent for finishing.

 

If you admire the “trompe l’oeil” going train bridge, it features chamfered and polished edges and the Côtes de Genève motif perfectly aligns with the stripes on the adjacent bridge.

 

The bridges are engraved with the maker’s name, place of origin, the number of jewels etc, all filled in gold.

 

Born to reside on my wrist

I make no apologies for my unbridled lust for this watch. It is truly beautiful. The watch is the culmination of many years creating handsome timepieces, employing skilled time-served hands to bring the watch to fruition.

 

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication

Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication - side

 

The case has an arc-like profile, following the contour of the wrist to enhance wearer comfort. Indeed, this watch was born to reside on my wrist, where it would be highly valued.

 

Unlike the 5101G which proved sadly too expensive for my finite financial means, the 5200G is personally achievable and could be acquired with patient saving. My heart is thankfully not broken on this occasion, but full of a sense of yearning.

 

I dream of the day I will hold the 5200G in my cosseting hands and enjoy the daily, cathartic experience of winding the crown prior to wearing the watch. This is a joy I currently experience prior to placing my own 5111G on my appreciative wrist. When it comes to the 5200G , it is the waiting which makes the watch seem all the more special.

 

Technical Specification

  • Model: Patek Philippe Ref. 5200 Gondolo 8 Days, Day & Date Indication
  • Reference: 5200G
  • Case: 18-carat white gold; dimensions 46.90 x 35.20 mm; height 10.40 mm (crystal to back); water resistant to 3 bar (30 metres); sapphire crystal to front and caseback.
  • Functions: Hours; minutes; subsidiary seconds; day; date; power-reserve.
  • Movement: Caliber 28-20 REC 8J PS IRM C J, hand-wound movement; frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); 28 jewels; power reserve 192 hours
  • Strap: Hand-stitched alligator leather strap in blue or black dependent on model with 18-carat white gold pin buckle.

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