This article originally appeared in Elite Traveler July/August 2016
By Kristen Shirley
In the early 1930s, Swiss watchmaker Louis Cottier created a mechanism that displayed all 24 time zones on a watch dial. His invention has been used to beautiful, and useful, effect by watchmakers ever since.
Patek Philippe is widely credited with taking Cottier’s invention and creating the first World Time wristwatch. This year Patek Philippe’s Ref. 5930 combines world time and chronograph functions for the first time since 1940. This combination is difficult to achieve; just fitting all of the information on the dial is a challenge; measuring up to the codes of the Patek Philippe Seal is another. The 18K white gold Ref. 5930 features updated cities for the 24 time zones, a 30-minute flyback chronograph and elegant winglet-style strap lugs. The chronograph hand can double as a running seconds hand without affecting the power reserve as it is powered by a vertical clutch.
Svend Andersen, a former employee of Patek Philippe, is renowned for his World Time watches and the pièces uniques that he develops for collectors. To celebrate the 25th anniversary of his first World Time watch, Andersen Genève created a limited edition timepiece, the Tempus Terrae. In the middle of the city ring is a handcrafted guilloché dial in Andersen’s exclusive 21K blue gold, a color he achieves by adding iron and heating the metals. There are 25 pieces each in white, yellow and red gold; each can be customized.
Patek Philippe, Contact: David Chen, +1 310 273 4741, Gearys Beverly Hill, patekphilippe.com