The specialist artistic techniques used to decorate timepieces have a long and glorious history at Patek Philippe. Since the 1600’s, Geneva has been a centre of excellence for rare handcrafts, and throughout its own history, Patek Philippe has flown the flag for the artisans and their incredible work. Today, Patek Phlippe showcase around 40 rare hand craft pieces per year. Designed around every day objects and images it is the responsibility of Philippe, Thierry and Sandrine Stern to research and develope, but also work closely with their inhouse artisans to create these rare challenging works of art. The rare handcraft collection adorns not only wrist watches, but pocket watches and domed table clock also. Showcasing expertise in enamelling, marquetry, stone setting, guilloche and hand engraving. Demand in this area far exceeds supply. Artisans practicing their craft at this level are few and far between, and Patek Philippe will never compromise on qaulity by scarificing its standards and increase production quantities. Rarity is the common denominator: in the finely tuned skills, the artisans who master them, and the products that are a testament to their abilities. This particular very fine and rare model is the ref 5160 grand complication retrograde date perpetual calendar timepiece. Now dsicontinued, it is made in an all 18ct white gold case with full engraving. A solid 18ct white gold hindged dust cover also fully hand engraved, held on a genuine brown alligator strap with matching 18ct white gold folding clasp. Fitted with the highly complicated and decorated Manufacture calibre 324 S QR mechanical self-winding movement, features include retrograde date, day, month, leap year and moon phases. Silver opalinedial with hand guilloched centre and transferred roman numerals, finished with a sapphire crystal glass and caseback. Part of a private collection.