Why are Patek Philippe Watches So Expensive?

Patek Philippe is a top brand among all Swiss luxury watches. It is also considered the finest watch brand due to its rich heritage, high quality, performance, and technical brilliance. 

Like other luxury timepieces like Rolex, Omega, and Audemars Piguet, Patek is among the most prestigious watches. However, have you ever wondered, “Why are Patek Philippe watches so expensive?”

Keep reading to discover why and how much a Patek Philippe watch costs.

So, How Much Does a Patek Philippe Watch Cost?

Generally, a Patek Philippe timepiece can cost between a few thousand dollars and $50,000

There are over 173 models, and a brand-new Patek watch can cost anywhere from $21,000 to two million. Moreover, the watch’s price depends on many factors, such as the materials used, features, popularity, and complexity.

The fact that Patek Philippe timepieces are handcrafted indicates two things:

Firstly, making a single watch takes a lot of time. Secondly, a handmade timepiece, particularly one from Patek, will be excellent. Both of these considerations are the primary reasons why they produce expensive watches.

At the top, we have the Grand Complication, which often includes a minute repeater, a chronograph, and the type of perpetual calendar that takes leap years into account. 

Meanwhile, the Grandmaster Chime, which sold for $31 million last year, was at the top of the market and had fewer than 20 complications, including grand and little sonneries and a four-digit year display.

6 Reasons Why Patek Philippe Timepieces are So Expensive

1. Heritage Patek Philippe

Founded in 1839, Patek Philippe has a lengthy and incredible history. It is one of the oldest watchmakers in the world and has been around for more than 180 years.

The heritage and reputation that Patek has built up over its centuries-long existence and among watch collectors are two of the most obvious explanations for why the watches are so expensive.

In 1932, the Stern family acquired possession of Patek Philippe. After the 1929 stock market crisis, it was difficult for the watch company to remain afloat. During that time, Stern was already a trusted confidant and a source of excellent dials. 

Moreover, preserving Swiss watchmaking’s rich history was essential to both factions. Stern had acquired the company in less than a year; the family now controls it.

2. Craftsmanship

Given their status as one of the “Holy Trinity” watchmakers, Patek Philippe’s timepieces are held to a specific standard of excellence. This standard necessitates a highly competent workforce that carefully makes each watch. 

Patek Philippe timepieces are labor-intensively built, polished, and fine-tuned by hand. As a result, they come with expensive price tags because it requires money to hire the best artisans in the world.

In addition, the level of craftsmanship and finishing put into a Patek Philippe watch, which is significantly higher than practically any other premium brand, is a cost-determining element. Price increases resulting from the tremendous skill required to combine a finely polished casing with a nicely finished movement.

3. Quality

In 2008, Patek created the Patek Philippe Seal to pledge to perfection. To preserve the city’s reputation as the center of the finest watchmaking, the Geneva Seal Bureau enforces quality watch movement standards.

On the other hand, the Patek Philippe seal sets strict standards for a watch’s features, parts, and timekeeping accuracy.

Along with producing fine timepieces, Patek has strict criteria for its staff training. The requirements include the watchmaker, the salesman, and the customer service. 

Additionally, they provide the world’s first lifelong service pledge. It ensures that any Patek Philippe watches produced between 1839 and now can be serviced and refurbished.

4. Design

Patek creates exquisite timepieces, which are stunning because of their distinctive designs. Each technique and fashion trend is painstakingly crafted with real art. 

It involves several handmade processes, including inlays, enamel painting, setting precious stones, and too-delicate engraving.

Therefore, every component of the expensive watch bears striking and excellent hand-applied ornamentation. It takes roughly 40 to 60 steps to complete a modest element like the wheels. A Patek Philippe watch’s fine details are visible, from the dial to the faceted batons and hands.

5. Exclusivity

Patek only manufactures 50,000 watches annually, a small number compared to other watch manufacturers, who create about a million a year. This low number is due to the Patek watch’s complex manufacturing procedure.

It would take around nine months to produce some of its most basic watches. However, more complex pieces take longer than two years to complete.

6. Value

Anyone who buys a Patek knows that if they decide to sell it later, they won’t lose any money. Although it is impossible to foresee in each case, it is certainly possible that the value of the Patek Philippe timepiece may rise with time. 

However, it’s still comforting to know that even though most people buy watches for personal enjoyment rather than to sell them right away. 

Most Expensive Patek Philippe Watches

  • Patek Philippe GrandMaster Chimes
  • Patek Philippe Grand Complications Sky Moon
  • Patek Philippe Grand Complications Minute Repeater
  • Patek Philippe Grand Complications Perpetual Calendar
  • Patek Philippe Nautilus Travel Time Chronograph Tiffany

Least Expensive Patek Philippe Watches

  • The Patek Philippe Calatrava 5196J
  • The Patek Philippe Nautilus 7118/1A-001
  • Patek Philippe Gondolo 7041R-00
  • Patek Philippe Complication 5212A-001
  • Patek Philippe Twenty-4 4910/10A


Is the Patek Philippe watch worth the cost?

Keeping all the points in mind, it makes sense why Patek Philippe watches are more expensive than most of their high-end competitors. But what you receive in exchange is something unique that endures forever.  

Does Patek Philippe cost more than Rolex?

Although Patek Philippe may not be the most well-known name in the world of luxury watches (that honor probably belongs to Rolex), its cost is frequently higher than that of most other manufacturers.

Watches made by Patek are among the world’s finest workmanship and highest-quality luxury timepieces, if not the best. 

As a result, Patek Philippe watches frequently cost substantially more than other watch brands, including Rolex. This cost is never actually at the auction where Patek watches predominate that situation.

Where to buy Patek Philippe watches?

There are authorized dealers, secondary market dealers, and Patek Philippe shops. These are the three leading platforms consumers use to purchase Patek timepieces.

Final Thoughts

Patek Philippe is a remarkable watch brand in the horology industry because of their various elements like the use of premium materials, cutting-edge designs, and fine artistry. 

We hope you now know what makes Patek Philippe watches so expensive.

If you liked this review, please read our other reviews at EvesWatch.com.

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