This endangered species strap is shown for display purposes only and is not for sale. The watch will be supplied with a calf leather strap.
The present watch is a very well preserved and extremely attractive pink gold example of the reference 2526 with enamel dial with luminous indexes and hands and original Gay Frères bracelet, all confirmed by the Extract from the Archives. To the best of our knowledge, it is one of only five examples of the model in pink gold made in this particular configuration to appear in public to date.
Enhancing its desirability further is the exquisite pink gold bracelet made by renowned jeweller Gay Frères. The Extract from the Archives confirms that the present watch was sold with a rose gold bracelet in 1958, matching the punched "58" for 1958 on the clasp. It can therefore be concluded that it is indeed original to the watch.
Introduced into the market in 1952, reference 2526 was Patek Philippe's first self-winding or automatic watch, starting with movement number 760'000. The model features the legendary calibre 12-600 AT which was granted Swiss patent No. 289758 in 1953 for "a self-winding mechanism for a wristwatch movement using the energy supplied by a rotary mass causing an eccentric part to transmit a swinging movement to an organ of the mechanism".
The majority of reference 2526 was cased in yellow gold, a small series in pink gold and an exceedingly limited number in white gold and platinum. Mainly fitted with enamel dials with applied gold baton numerals, the white gold and platinum examples were also available with silvered metal dials with diamond indexes.
A paragon of understatement and timeless class combined with a state-of-the art movement, reference 2526 has significantly influenced the popularity of wristwatches featuring enamel dials. In 1960, it was replaced by reference 3428, equipped with the second generation self-winding movement, calibre 27-460.
The reference can be divided in three distinct series:
- First series: domed case back, enamel dial and riveted indexes. The dial presents flared holes under each index in order to allow for their setting.
- Second series: domed case back, enamel dials with the numerals glued to the surface. The dial presents only two flared holes for the hands.
- Third series, such as the present watch: flat case back, same dial as on second series and in later examples metal dial.
- Fourth series: same as third series, but with new calibre 27-460
Reference 2526 is illustrated in Patek Philippe Museum - Patek Philippe - Volume II, pp. 244-245.