Patek Philippe is making history this month, and you won’t have to fly to Geneva for it.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel


It’s nigh impossible to learn anything about mechanical watchmaking without having heard of Patek Philippe. And for those who would like a deep dive into one of the industry’s biggest names, the upcoming Patek Philippe Watch Art Grand Exhibition is a fine place to start.

Now in its fifth edition, with the first four previously held in Dubai, Munich, London and New York, the exhibition is coming to our shores on Sept 28 and will be the largest event Patek Philippe has held. The exhibition will run for 16 days and feature 10 themed rooms spread across more than 1,800 sq m of space at the Marina Bay Sands Theatre. “This is also the first time that such a large number of timepieces from the Patek Philippe Museum will be showcased in Singapore,” shares Deepa Chatrath, general manager of Geneva Master Time, a subsidiary of Patek Philippe. “This may be the only chance for anyone to capture a glimpse into a collection of this breadth in Asia.”

Such treasures include ultra-complicated pieces like the Calibre 89 and Sky Moon Tourbillon, historic gems like a pocket watch that once belonged to Queen Victoria, and a showcase of the brand’s rare handcrafts through pieces such as its dome clocks. “Back in 2015, Patek Philippe created three beautiful dome clocks to celebrate Singapore’s 50th Anniversary and, for 2019, we felt that it would be symbolic of Patek Philippe’s strong relationship with Singapore to commemorate the country’s Bicentennial by hosting the Watch Art Grand Exhibition here.”

And because it’s never too early to begin appreciating haute horlogerie, the exhibition will also have two Family Days with children’s activities. “Of course, the much-awaited surprise element will be the limited-edition complicated pieces, not unlike Patek Philippe’s first World Time Minute Repeater, the Ref. 5531, which was launched during the New York exhibition,” Chatrath teases. “We look forward to revealing these watches then.”

For ticket reservations, visit Admission is free.

Unveiled in 1989, the Calibre 89 pocket watch features 33 complications and weighs 1.1kg.
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Adding to Omega’s spread of limited-edition collectibles following the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing are two new watches celebrating the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The official sponsor and timekeeper for the event has presented the Seamaster Aqua Terra Tokyo 2020 and the Seamaster Planet Ocean 2020 (pictured) exactly one year before the games begin. The former sports a ceramic dial (an Aqua Terra first) in blue with a laser-engraved finish that echoes the pattern of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games emblem, a matching rubber strap, and is powered by the Master Chronometer Calibre 8900. The latter features a ceramic bezel with a Liquidmetal diving scale, with the number 20 filled with red ceramic in honour of next year’s Olympics, and a red-tipped seconds hand as a nod to the Japanese flag. This model houses the Master Chronometer Calibre 8800. Both are limited to 2,020 pieces.
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If you found Breguet’s updated Marine models from last year elegant, but not quite sporty enough, the new full-metal models should sate those desires. Originally offered in gold or titanium with rubber or alligator straps, the three-hand Marine 5517, Marine Chronographe 5527 (pictured) and Marine Alarme Musicale 5547 now come with titanium bracelets to match their titanium cases. Lightweight, corrosion-resistant and meticulously finished (the links are satinbrushed and polished, just like the case and bezel), Breguet’s latest luxury sports watches are as practical as they are refi ned.
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It is a little disappointing to see that Roger Dubuis’ emphatically dramatic Excalibur Knights of the Round Table IV doesn’t bring anything new to the – pardon us – table. While the first three in the series each depicted their knights and tables (i.e. hour indexes and dials) in wholly distinct ways, the newest piece to join the legendary lineup is simply a new colour variant of the third edition. But that’s not to say the watch isn’t impressive. The small rose-gold sculptures and translucent enamel (now in red instead of blue) are still magnificent to behold, and the self-winding RD821 calibre is still hand-finished to the standards of the Geneva Seal.