The 2019 Patek Philippe Watch Art Grand Exhibition in Singapore is a gift that keeps on giving, what with the parade of the rare and the exquisite, with special editions not a few. Yet another cherry on top is a wholly new reference that was unveiled, the Ref. 5303R Grand Complication in rose gold.
Information is sketchy; what follows is what we got. The Ref. 5393R is a manual-wind minute repeater tourbillon, optimised to the last to showcase all it’s got. This begins with the transparent dial and skeletonised movement. The minute repeater components are plated in rose gold to stand out from the other parts; and in a first for Patek Philippe, the hammers and gongs have been shifted to the front, with the latter anchored on the caseband for greater amplification of the sound.
With a transparent dial, it’s not just the gearworks that stand out: the hour track, though reduced to a sliver at dial perimeter, catches the eye with its bright red colour with white hash marks for the minutes and stars on the hour, as a nod to the Singapore flag.
From the side, the colourway of the movement is repeated through white gold accents soldered onto the hand skeletonised rose gold case. The minute repeater slide, in white gold, is engraved with its recesses plated in rose gold.
Built upon a base caliber that has been driving Patek Philippe’s minute repeaters since 1991, the new caliber designated R TO 27 PS underwent numerous modifications to accommodate the new dial-side placing of the hammers and gongs as well as to optimise the aesthetics. These included enlarging the plate to accommodate the sound works, and skeletonised various components to open up the movement, front and back.