Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Last year, Patek Philippe released the hyper-cool stainless steel Nautilus 5990 Travel Time, and this year, they've continued the travel theme with a new pilot's watch. In a surprising move, Patek has played to the trends and reached into their history to inspire the new Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524. With a classic and rugged design, handy jumping-hour dual time complication and a trick pusher design, this odd-ball Calatrava stands out in Patek's current line up.

The Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 is based on old Patek Philippe hour angle watches that helped pilots calculate their position when used in tandem with a sextant and a radio. The exact reference pieces, which are also known as siderometers, are on display at the Patek Philippe museum and were used to inform the design of this sporty new Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time reference 5524.

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Nowadays, siderometers are not especially crucial complications, so Patek opted to use their travel time functionality to add some flare to the rather common pilot watch aesthetic. The movement is Patek's CH 324 S C FUS, an automatic movement with 294 parts, 29 jewels, a maximum power reserve of 45 hours, and Patek's Gyromax balance. With support for dual timezones via a local jumping hour hand, day/night indication for both home and local time, and a sub dial for the date, this is a nicely featured and well thought-out design for a travel complication.

The Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524's case is 42mm wide and offered exclusively in white gold. With a thickness of 11.78mm and a lug to lug slightly under 51mm, the Calatrava Pilot Travel Time feels excellent on wrist, with a very masculine and sporty appeal (despite the gold case).

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The dial is done in a very dark blue lacquer that appears somewhat grey in all but bright lighting. The hands are blued steel with ample lume and the arabic markers are also generously lumed for low light visibility. Additionally, the supplemental hour hand can be hidden beneath the main hour hand when the owner is not traveling.

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

To ensure 30m of water resistance and to protect the time display from accidental change, the pushers for the travel time feature a patent-pending locking pusher design that only requires a light quarter turn of the pusher cap to lock the pusher in place. In hand, this feature feels and works beautifully, and it's an elegant solution that is much more user friendly than a traditional screw-down pusher (especially given that the pushers are on the left side of the case).

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Although the Calatrava Pilot Travel Time may seem like a strange watch for Patek Philippe to produce, I am far from a Patek purist, and I found it to be entirely charming in person. While it's far from an original design, the implementation is strong, the proportions are excellent and, if you want a sport watch in white gold, I'd certainly recommend seeing the Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 in person before passing final judgement.

Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Priced at $47,600 USD mounted on the vintage style brown leather strap seen in the photos, the Patek Philippe Calatrava Pilot Travel Time Ref. 5524 is quite expensive, but what did you expect? Like the white gold GMT Master II announced last year, this is precious metal meets luxury wrapped up in a time-proven sporty pilot design.

Keep up with our pre-, post-, and live Baselworld 2015 coverage here.

What do you think?
  • I love it! (5)
  • Thumbs up (0)
  • Interesting (0)
  • Classy (0)
  • I want it! (0)
  • The unadorned caseback is a bit of a letdown.
    I know PP sits in an upper echelon, but if this watch was in steel and then priced accordingly, wouldn’t they not only reach a wider audience, and also have a more appropriate sport/casual offering with this oddball?

  • henryus

    This is a very odd watch, I still cannot figure it out. It looks very much like other ETA-based watches. Even the rotor is one of standard center-mounted kind (as opposed to the usual micro-rotors one sees from Patek). It feels like Patek did their very best to create a standard watch from scratch employing the most traditional methods available. Dial looks like any other plastic dial, except it’s made of lacquer. 30m water resistance, I am truly befuddled.

    The only explanation I can think of is this is a watch for a person with so much money, even the most standard watch must be a Patek., because such a person cannot be caught wearing anything other than a Patek. It’s an obscene scenario, but I cannot think of any other demand for which this watch should exist.

    Maybe one has to hold one to understand it, but since the likelihood of my owning a Patek is minute, someone please enlighten me.

  • Grinnie Jax

    This kind of watch was so unexpected from Patek Philippe that my mind instinctively tries to change the logo for “Glycine Airman”. I tell it “No, its Patek, one of the eldest traditional manufacturers of haute horlogerie pieces of art.”, but my second voice keeps telling “Look! If you blur you eyes a bit – it looks like hundreds of modern popular aviator-pilot-field-style watches like Glycine, Sinn, Steinhart, Fortis and many-many more”. 
    But it is Patek for almost 50k $.

  • notech47

    Well done, but you won’t find any professional pilots and only a few other people willing to spend such an enormous amount of money on a watch that looks like it should cost well under 1K.

  • DangerussArt

    I like it better that Zenith’s oversized version. The styling is a hit for me, but odd for Patek. But as much as the style draws me in, the price repels. Thankfully I’m unaffected by the PP mystique, so any number is similarly styled “accessible” (is that the term now?) watches will scratch that itch.

  • SwissMatic

    I admit to being a Patek “purist”, and this design is a little out there for them. That said, I find this watch to be very attractive. The face is very legible yet brimming with personality; a rare combination. The locking pushers are smart and the ability to hide the second hour hand is a really nice touch. Gorgeous movement (as usual) with the best looking rotor in the business. I agree with SuperStrapper that there should be a steel version to put this watch more within reach of us plebians.

  • Naysayer

    On looks, I’m struggling to be positive here.
    “Nice buckle… probably even better than my Oris.”
    There, how did I do?

  • I_G

    It’s for very rich pilots like Harrison Ford.

  • I_G

    Naysayer Splendidly.

  • thornwood36

    Its got the magic name Patek Philippe name om it so i want it, Does it scream Pattek name ?……………no, There is enough ” diver” watches about that are a bit samey at a much reduced price. Left handed pressy bits , that’s not done enough. Would i be right in saying most folk wear their watch on the left wrist ? When i was i school ( which wasn’t yesterday) , on the right wrist meant you were gay…………………………….go figure. .

  • SantiagoT

    Well I was at Baselworld and one day before it started I saw a guy from Patek stealing a Zenith Pilot Type 20, scratching out the Zenith logo with a razor blade and then paiting the Patek name on it. True story.

  • I_G

    thornwood36 What did watches on both wrists mean in your school? Bisexual?

  • Shawnnny

    It’s another Zenith look-a-like with pushers and a crown that don’t go with the rest of the watch.

  • Ryan B

    they should have put lume on the seconds hand as well

  • thornwood36

    I_G thornwood36

    That meant you had too many watches : )

  • Phillip Hornibrook

    It’s really odd how some watches can capture your imagination.. Unfortunately this just isn’t one of them, I can think of far better choices to spend £32000

  • That looks like a lovely new style of deployant(?) buckle.

  • WimadS

    What’s that needle pusher (or whatever you call it) between the lugs? I mean, they’ve got two pushers and a crown on a 50k watch, and its not enough to operate all functions?? The style resembles no PP watch, but looks exactly like any other < 1k pilot watch out there?? 

    What is this? Their designers were on vacation and the IT guy finished the design? April fools?

  • egznyc

    Ford is more of a Hamilton kind of guy …

  • egznyc

    Speaking of Harrison Ford, I’m pretty sure he is straight and be wears an earring on his left lobe. But I’ve never heard any such thing about which wrist one wears a watch on; that’s mostly about being left handed vs. right handed.

  • egznyc

    But to be fair at least they put a drop on the circle near its tip.

  • egznyc

    Again, to be fair, it does have a second time zone (GMT) complication, as well as the day/night indicators for both time zones. I also happen to like the somewhat unusual numbering font used, which is similar to Zenith’s but not the same. Nonetheless, not what one pictures for a PP.

  • BAwristwatchfan

    aBlogtoWatch Just beautiful!

  • egznyc ??

  • egznyc

    Chaz_Hen egznyc If you look at the photo of the watch in which its hands and hour markers glow, you’ll see that the seconds hand is pointed up at 12:00, and that the “lollipop” circle near the tip is glowing.

  • egznyc Chaz_Hen Ah yes, I see! Domo.

  • iamcalledryan

    The concealed pusher will be for the date wheel. I am not sure that having protruding pushers for all functions of a complicated what is a sign of its competence.
    And despite the styling similarities, which are by no means a patent of an existing brand but a style (much like a diver is), I can see detail here such as the buckle, the numerals, the movement, that make this an indisputably luxury timepiece.
    I also found the price a little frightening but then I realized that this is less to do with quality and material and more to do with the fact that it is not a dress watch or crazy avant-guarde. We have come to expect heritage models to compete with their original price for some reason. It may be a left field model, but it is a Patek. Put the same materials into a leather strap white gold nautilus and wouldn’t we be looking at the same price range? Might wrong, not been shopping for one recently 😉

  • iamcalledryan

    This is important. Wearing one on the left ear is supposedly straight, right ear not straight. That was a fact on a 1980’s playground.

  • Josefina Patiño Núñez

    Me recuerda a mi papá !!!

  • egznyc

    iamcalledryan I understand the signaling concept behind which ear; there is a value in communicating information to others in this way for some folks.  As for which wrist to wear a watch, well that would seem to be unrelated to sexual preference.  Lots of folks wear one on the right who are left-handed, though some might also happen to be gay.  And some left-handed folks wear a watch on the right wrist — just because that’s the way they’ve always worn one.  And most men who wear watches have been wearing them well before they were old enough to think about sexuality.

  • ConstellationH

    SantiagoT You are so right!

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