With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with black dial and applied yellow gold Breguet numerals in 1938 and its subsequent sale on 28 October 1938.
It is general knowledge that a reference number identifies a case style. However, it is also commonly believed that the reference number identifies the complication of the watch. While this is true for modern watches, there are instances in which the same case, and thus the same reference number, has been used for watches with different complications. The textbook example is the reference offered here. Reference 530 is a "spin-off" of reference 130, the archetypical Patek Philippe chronograph. Following the launch of reference 130, market demand prompted the firm to create a larger version, with a 36/37 mm. (according to the case supplier) diameter. The same case layout was also used for a time only version of the watch, which is superbly exemplified by the present timepiece.
Both versions of the reference 530, and also reference 130, are directly inspired by the timeless reference 96, the "original" Calatrava. And the Calatrava blueprint is apparent at first glance when looking at the case of this watch, with the typical downturned lugs that seamlessly merge into the case main body, imparting to the timepiece a very masculine, nearly tonneau feel.
Consigned in wonderfully preserved original condition, the thin layer of oxidation that covers the case is a telltale sign for true watch connoisseurs that the case has not undergone polishing. Furthermore, the deeper glow granted to the watch by this oxidation is extremely appealing, the yellow metal much less loud than a non-oxidized watch and with uncountable more charm and character. In this specific instance, this particular hue is the perfect companion for the breathtaking black dial with gilt markers and Breguet numerals. The ensemble works flawlessly together: the gilt designations have aged to a more subdued tone that seems to be engineered to match the glow of the case.
Not only does this watch impress with its amazing style and the incredible condition, it is also one of the rarest examples of reference 530. This model is known to have been made in yellow gold, mostly 14K, some examples 18K, and in stainless steel, some example with a pink or yellow gold bezel. This is one of the rarest 18K gold examples, and, more importantly, the only know time only reference 530 fitted with a black dial and Breguet numerals, confirmed by the Extract from the Archives: an exceptional opportunity for the avid Patek Philippe collector to become the owner of a unique and aesthetically breathtaking timepiece.
This watch bears a reference number, 530, usually reserved for the renowned oversized chronograph wristwatch, introduced into the market in 1938. However, reference 530 was used not just for the chronograph but also for a plain model without any complications. Whereas the present watch very much resembles a traditional reference 570, close examination shows differences in case proportions such as a larger diameter of 36.5 mm and a concave bezel.
In production from 1937 and 1944, reference 530 is one of Patek Philippe's signature pieces.