New Patek Philippe Aquanaut Luce is my favourite watch of the year so far

Aquanaut with annual calendar wowed at Watches and Wonders

Patek Philippe Aquanaut Luce Annual Calendar
(Image credit: Patek Philippe)

Watches and Wonders might be over for another year, but there’s still time to talk about Patek Philippe’s latest offerings.

The Swiss company revealed a pair of new Aquanaut watches at the Geneva show this year. The first is a new 42mm chronograph with a fetching brown dial and matching composite rubber strap, while the latter is the one that really caught my eye.

Called the Aquanaut Luce Annual Calendar 5261R-001, this is the first Patek Philippe Aquanaut to feature an annual calendar complication. It also has a moonphase complication at the 12 o’clock position, and a pair of subdials showing the day and month below, with a date counter at  six o’clock.

It’s a great-looking timepiece, but what I especially like about it is its size. With their 39.9mm case widths, this pair of Aquanauts are technically part of Patek’s women’s collection. But I think their size and design makes them perfectly unisex, and as a person with slimmer wrists, these watches are more appealing to me than something measuring in at over 40mm.

Patek Philippe

(Image credit: Patek Philippe)

The rose gold case, crown and detailing perfectly suit the watch’s textured blue dial and strap, with a favourite detail being how the moonphase complications intentionally obscures the 12 o’clock marker. It’s like Patek is acknowledging the effort that has gone into fitting annual date and moonphase complications into a relatively small timepiece.

The watch’s calibre 26-330 S QA LU automotive movement is visible through the exhibition caseback and has 34 jewels and 45 hours of power reserve; not massive, but still enough to leave it unworn for a day or so without the complex movement losing time. Speaking of the movement, Patek says how the moonphase dial will only deviate by one day after 122 years of use.

Water resistance is 100 metres, and naturally, the timepiece carries a typical Patek price of £49,530.

Alistair Charlton

Alistair is a freelance automotive and technology journalist. He has bylines on esteemed sites such as the BBC, Forbes, TechRadar, and of best of all, T3, where he covers topics ranging from classic cars and men's lifestyle, to smart home technology, phones, electric cars, autonomy, Swiss watches, and much more besides. He is an experienced journalist, writing news, features, interviews and product reviews. If that didn't make him busy enough, he is also the co-host of the AutoChat podcast.