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"The Only One": Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime For Only Watch Ref. 6300A

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Without any preamble to introduce this subject, I can say that the most expensive watch ever sold at auction to date is the unique Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime For Only Watch Ref. 6300A sold at Christie’s biennial charity auction, “Only watch,” in Geneva on 9 November last year; for a hammer price of $31,225,649 million or about £24 million. This well and truly trumps the previous record-holder; a Paul Newman Rolex Daytona wristwatch that had actually been owned by the actor himself and which sold for $17.75 million on 27 October 2017. Two facts of note need to be inserted at this point, before looking at the Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime in more detail. Firstly, the record-breaking Patek Philippe sold at Christie's “Only Watch” auction in last November had actually been created for the particular biennial charity sale and it’s full title includes the suffix, “For Only Watch.” And secondly, a notable feature of the watch is the material used for the case - polished steel rather than precious metal. Rare Patek Philippe watches in base metals (steel and titanium) have held a particular attraction over recent years, partly because the company has tended to produce far more watches in precious, and the Grandmaster Chime For Only Watch is a case in point and not a peculiar aberration in this regard. 





(Pic from resize-parismatch.lanmedia.fr)







(Above four pics from hodinkee.imgix.net)




The Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime For Only Watch is far more than just a chiming wristwatch; indeed, it is highly complex and sophisticated, representing one of the most complicated watches ever made by the company. The original Grandmaster Chime was launched in October of 2014 in the form of the ornate yellow gold watch, Reference 5175, produced to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the company in Geneva; an extraordinary accomplishment. Six of these watches were made and sold to collectors for $2.5 million apiece. Then, in March 2016, a white gold version of the original model was produced, the Reference 6300G, and this was sold for $2.2 million. Finally, we come to the Reference 6300A, shattering the auction price bar and perhaps the swansong for this model.

The One Watch auction Patek is powered by the hand-wind Caliber 300 GS AL 36-750 QIS FUS IRM - a movement supporting 20 complications and five chiming modes that took the company 11 years to perfect, representing a peak moment in the long history of Patek chiming watches. The complications include a minute repeater, grande and petite sonnerie, and two unique chiming complications. One of these is an alarm that when sounding will also chime the hour for which the alarm was set. The Grandmaster Chime is also the first watch to have a date repeater complication which sounds the date of the month on two gongs, reading the date off the perpetual calendar.




(Above two pics from Monochrome Watches at stackpathcdn.com)



The Grandmaster Chime For One Watch itself is chunky to say the least with its reversible hobnail guilloché sided steel case measuring almost 48 mm across with a thickness of 16 mm; nevertheless, it apparently wears well, if rather large, on the wrist due partly to the long articulating lugs. On one side of the case, replete with about half the available complications, is a beautiful salmon pink (rose gold) dial, while the other 50% of the complications are found on the opposite dial which is coloured an ebony black and has rose gold hands. The ebony dial is a four-register design but, like the watch in general, legibility is surprisingly good. Note that the pink dial is branded for Patek Philippe, of course, and also bears the legend, “THE ONLY ONE.”





(Pic from watchesbysjx.com)




(Pic from i.redd.it)



At this stage in the proceedings, I could go all philosophical and wonder just “why” would a company go to such enormous lengths to produce a classical and complex one-off mechanical watch in the modern world, does it represent any sort of value for money, and should we be happy that there are individuals who have the power to bid up this watch into multi-millions of dollars, noting of course that in this case the watch was sold at a charity auction? However, I shall leave that for others to ponder upon and just enjoy the beauty and micro-engineering achievement of the Grandmaster Chime Reference 6300A for what it is.





(Pic from gearpatrol.com)

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If anyone is in any doubt about the quality of Patek Philippe watches I strongly recommend they visit the museum in Geneva.  Some of the watches on display there are complete works of art.  I should also mention there are lots of Breguet watches there too, something I think gets generally ignored these days the history and quality of Breguet watches.

Forget all the hype over PP watches they really are something.

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A towering technical achievement and fantastic that a company of PP's calibre made this specifically to donate to charity.

Personally, I think, to put it kindly, it's looks are ummm..... challenging. And by challenging I mean 'looks like something Stuhrling would sell for £200', sorry.



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  • 1 month later...
On 18/02/2020 at 16:42, Always"watching" said:




(Pic from i.redd.it)


(Pic from gearpatrol.com)

Only question really worth asking - if you use the quick-set between 10 pm and 2 am do you trash the movement?

Oh, and BTW, I have the exact same thing as the one in the picture.  The jacket, unfortunately, not the watch!

No photo description available.

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