Patek Philippe did something it never does when it unveiled a batch of special editions for the Watch Art Grand Exhibition Singapore 2019. For the first time in its history, it displayed the tourbillon on the dial of a watch. That watch was the skeleton dial Ref. 5303 Minute Repeater Tourbillon. Initially made has a limited edition of 12 watches, the 5303R with a reworked design is now a part of the regular Patek Philippe line-up.
This is also the first Patek Philippe Grand Complication with a minute repeater that displays the hammers and gongs dial side. The skeletonized dial also ensures that the tourbillon is visible: the back side of its cage can be seen beneath the hand of the seconds subdial at 6 o’clock.
The watch has a rose gold case that is 42 mm wide and 12.13 mm thick. It has a polished bezel and white gold inlaid panels with a floral motif on the flank and lugs, the same motifs are repeated on the white-gold slide used to operate the minute repeater.
The openworked dial is the perfect foil for the hand-wound Caliber R TO 27 PS. While this is based on the Cal. R 27, the movement was re-engineered to display the striking mechanism dial side. While the back of the movement has the traditional rhodium-plated finish, the front has been gilded to make it look more pleasing on the dial. The finissage is exemplary – cue the Geneva stripes of the rose gold base plate, perlage decoration for the recesses, and the circular satin finishing of the hammers. The hour circle is an engraved sapphire-crystal ring with powdered rose-gold marker dots.
The back of the movement is visible via the sapphire crystal caseback. The white gold inlays of the case flank are seen here as well. The hand-wound movement has a 40 hour-power reserve (maximum power reserve is 48 hours) and an escapement that beats at 3 Hz (21,600 vph). The watch is paired with an alligator leather strap with a fold-over clasp. The price of this watch is priced at CHF600,000.