Vacheron Constantin isn’t good at everything, but they are good at a few things. One of those things is making effectively simple luxury watches. Getting too avant garde really isn’t their thing. Releasing “modern” watches really isn’t their thing either. In my opinion the newer Quai de l’Ile collection was a visual and logical disaster.
Moving forward, Vacheron Constantin has been focusing a great deal on platinum watches. The expensive and hard to work with metal has been increasing in popularity, especially as many of the world’s wealthy watch lovers are seeking more and more exclusive materials for their watches. While there is nothing new about platinum, it has always been of the rarest precious metals, and notorious for requiring extreme efforts to work.
The Platine Patrimony Double Retrograde watch (Limited Edition of 100 pieces) features a platinum case, with a platinum dial, platinum hands, and even platinum threading (exclusive to Vacheron Constantin) on the strap. However, the hour indices are white gold (easier to polish, and the contrast with the sand-blasted platinum dial assists with legibility). You then have the blue hands for the retrograde date (on the top), and day of the week (on the bottom). The layout is really nice and simple. Not the same as Patek Philippe, but similar in terms of simplicity. It is a good idea to keep things easy to ready, and this is one of the better executions of a retrograde calendar that I have seen.
Inside is an in house Vacheron Constantin caliber 2460R31R7 with 27 jewels, beating at 28,800 bph and with a power reserve of 40 hours. Pretty simple, but the power reserve is a bit low in my opinion. The decoration of the movement is impressive however. Meticulous polishing on the movement itself, and the 22k gold rotor is guilloche engraved for a great classic look. Further, the rotor is coupled with ceramic ball bearings which are proving to be a better alternative that steel ball bearings that rely much more on lubrication.
The PT950 stamp on the watch dial and the rear of the watch indicate the purity of the platinum, which in this case is very close to being pure. The watch case is 42.5mm wide, a good size. It is good to see Vacheron Constantin focusing more on the things it is good at. No brand wants to hear that it cannot do everything, but it is important to focus on a company’s strengths. Watches like the Platine Patrimony Double Retrograde fall into this category, and should be seen as an example of Vacheron Constantin as a whole.