Patek Philippe Calatrava Clous de Paris

Earlier this morning, Patek Philippe Calatrava Clous de Paris announced its final novelties for Watches & Wonders 2021, and, alongside a brand new perpetual calendar, the brand also announced a new two-reference Calatrava collection, dubbed the “Clous de Paris.” Offered in rose gold and white gold as the reference 6119R and 6119G respectively, while the watches are certainly classic and conservative in their styling, this is a big move for the Calatrava range as these models use Patek’s new 30-255 PS movement, which is meant to be the next generation of their long-standing 215 PS hand-wound caliber. With applied markers and the traditional hobnail bezel, this is kind of your grandpa’s Patek – but only better.
Let’s get the easy stuff out of the way. Both references are 39mm wide, 8.08mm thick, and 46.9mm lug-to-lug (a shout out to Patek for including lug-to-lug in the tech specs). Both have sapphire display casebacks, alligator straps with pin buckles, 30 meters of water resistance, and are offered exclusively in a time-only format with a small seconds display. The rose-gold 6119R has a silver-grained dial with applied rose-gold “obus” markers and hands. Conversely, the 6119G has a grey-black dial with a vertical brushed finish and snailed finishing on the sub-dial.
Taking inspiration from the Calatrava’s impressive back catalog (which dates as far back as 1932 and the Ref. 96), these new Calatravas are a bit bigger but house a more suitably sized movement and have curved lugs for an ideal fit. In many ways, Patek Philippe Calatrava 6119 has created the new 6119 as an amalgam of various past references while striving to make the watch as modern as possible. Thus, we find a brand new movement wrapped in a design that has elements of the Ref. 96D, the 3919, and the 5119. See a pattern?

The key to this redesign is most certainly Patek’s new Caliber 30-255 PS, which is meant to be an upsized version of the 215 PS to better suit a modern case size. As such, where the 215 PS measures 21.9mm across, the 30-255 offers a case-filling 31mm diameter, all while maintaining the 215 PS’s exceedingly thin profile of just 2.55mm. Perhaps even more impressively, Patek has managed to fit a pair of mainspring barrels in the 30-255, so its power reserve is 65+ hours (versus 44 hours for the 215 PS).
Hand-wound and beautifully finished, the 30-255 carries the Patek Philippe Seal, and with it, a guarantee of -3/+2 seconds per day. Additionally, and helpful for those wanting to watch their 6119’s accuracy, the movement can be hacked (pulling the crown stops the movement so that the time can be synchronized with another measure). So while the Calatrava remains welcomely old-school in terms of its design, the new movement helps to keep things fresh.
The other benefit is that a larger movement means the dial proportions and layout can be improved, especially when it comes to the small seconds display. Just take a moment to compare a mid-late 2000s 5119 against the new 6119 (above) – see how much lower in the dial they are able to set the seconds display? And how much more proportional the overall layout is? While I think the use of negative space and contrast on the 5119 is rather special, the 6119 looks much more balanced and decidedly more like a modern Patek.

The Patek Philippe Calatrava 6119 has always been the quiet core of Patek Philippe’s range, and these new models keep a lot of the Calatrava’s subtle appeal while ensuring the range has the technical footing to remain competitive and timely within the brand’s ever-evolving lineup.