With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with raised gold hour markers and tachymetre scale in 1955 and its subsequent sale on 8 October 1956.
Reference 530 was introduced to the market in 1937 and is one of Patek Philippe's rarest chronograph models, the majority cased in yellow gold, few examples in pink gold or in stainless steel. This celebrated model is the larger version of the better known reference 130, Patek Philippe's classic chronograph retaining the timeless Calatrava design. However, reference 530 stands out by its impressive diameter overshadowing its smaller "sister model" by a substantial 4 mm. The yellow gold and the stainless steel models of this reference are known to have been made with two different bracelet widths between the lugs (19 mm. or 21.5 mm.), the wider version being more coveted by collectors. Interestingly, research shows that the pink gold examples exist only with one case type (19 mm.).
Reference 530 is certainly one of the most exclusive and attractive collector watches a connoisseur can aspire to. Examples of such high quality, like the present one, are considered trophies and offer everything watch collectors define as paramount: style, mechanics, exclusivity and condition.
The present rose gold reference 530 chronograph features an impressive list of attributes which are very seldom all united in the very same collector's watch. Coming from one of the world's most important private collections, it has never before been offered at public auction. Without exaggeration, there is most likely no other publicly known pink gold ref. 530 to have survived in better condition.
How could there be an overall better example, since this piece here comes in virtually unworn and absolutely untouched condition. The case is crisp as it was in 1956 when it left Geneva to be sent to Gobbi, Patek Philippe's exclusive retailer in Milano and still features the original case finish to its surfaces. The teeth on the original crown are sharp and the winder sits tightly, as do the chronograph pushers still today. Furthermore, they beautifully display the original subtle satin finish to their sides as well as the crisp facets to their angles. The incredibly appealing two tone dial retained all its black enamel printing and the rose gold hour markers and hands have developed over the last half century a fascinating orange-purplish-coppery oxidation to their surface. The movement was most likely never disassembled since its completion.
In over 30 years of international watch auctions, we can only think of one other rose gold ref. 530 chronograph that can be fairly compared to the present example. This other "AAA"-specimen was sold at Christie's Geneva on the 12 May 2008 as lot 250 to an Asian collector, achieving a result just short of 1 million Swiss Francs and then setting an auction record for any gold Patek Philippe chronograph reference 530 ever sold in public - a title it still holds today.
In a world of ever increasing scholarship and consequently stronger and stronger demand by the world's elite of wristwatch collectors, examples of such unmatched quality become exceedingly rare appearances in the international auction arena. Those lucky few who can claim such a perfect trophy their own are well aware that they may never be able to replace it later again. As such, these examples eventually seize to become available.
Reference 530 is illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, p. 265.