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Patek Philippe x Lunn’s Jewellers – An Enduring Love Affair

Posted by Tom Mulraney on

Patek Philippe x Lunn’s Jewellers – An Enduring Love Affair

Patek Philippe is one of the most exclusive and sought after luxury watch brands in the world. Not surprisingly then, being selected as a retail partner for the brand is considered both an honour and a privilege, and one which carries with it great responsibility. What is perhaps less apparent, at least to outsiders like you and I, is that it is also an intensely personal affair.

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You see despite its global fame Patek Philippe is still very much a family-owned and operated company and as such seeks out partners that share its core values. That’s why so many of its 400 retail partners worldwide are well-established, single-store operations that have maintained the same ownership for generations. One such fine example is Lunn’s Jewellers, an independent family run jewellers based in Belfast, Northen Ireland.

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Lunn’s Jewellers

Founded in 1954 by John H. Lunn, the boutique has grown to become one of the most well-respected in all of Ireland. It seemed only fitting that during the 1990’s Lunn’s became the country’s first official retailer of Patek Philippe timepieces. In the ensuing 20 or so years a strong relationship would blossom between the two brands, based on their mutual love of watchmaking.

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This relationship culminated in a visit to Lunn’s in May 2010 by Thierry Stern, who was at the time on his first visit to the UK and Ireland in his new role as President of Patek Philippe. It was on this trip that Mr. Stern was given a tour of Belfast’s famed Titanic Quarter, a large-scale waterfront regeneration project which includes the world’s largest Titanic-themed attraction.

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Evidently this experience stirred up some strong emotions in Mr. Stern as he decided at the end of his visit that he would like to create a Titanic-themed domed clock to mark his time in Belfast and to celebrate the significant upcoming anniversaries of both Patek Philippe (175 years) and Lunn’s (60 years).

The Dome Clock

Now before I go on, it is probably worth noting here that Patek Philippe domed clocks are incredibly rare and highly sought after. The company only produces a small number of them each year, and every one features a unique design never to be repeated. Nick Megarry, the watch manager/Patek Philippe specialist, says ‘They are so rare in fact that this is the first time in Patek Philippe’s 175 year history that it has ever produced one for a retailer in the UK or Ireland’ – which just goes to show the high esteem in which Lunn’s is held by the company.

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Although the clock was officially delivered to Lunn’s earlier this year, work actually started on it all the way back in 2011, under the direction of Stern’s wife, Sandrine Stern, Head of Creative at Patek Philippe. Once the designs were complete a production team worked for five months to create the finished product you see before you now, which, I’m sure you will agree, is nothing short of spectacular.

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The theme, appropriately enough, is of the RMS Titanic’s historic departure from the Belfast Harbour, with the gorgeous cloisonné enamel work on the clock’s dome representing the ship’s domed glass ceiling. This was one of the most challenging aspects of the production process, particularly because enamelling between straight gold wire is very intricate and time consuming, however when you look down on the clock I am sure you will agree it was completely worth the extra effort.

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For the actual time display there is a cloisonné enamel dial plate, complete with an hour circle with black enamelled Roman numerals. The dial centre meanwhile is guilloched under translucent sand-coloured enamel. In total it took over 200 hours to complete the enamelling of this table clock, with approximately 22 different enamel colours used and 24.7 m length of gold ribbon used for the partitions.

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The Selection

Of course if you would like to see it for yourself all you need do is simply visit Lunn’s in Belfast. Now admittedly a table clock, even one as outstanding as this one, may not be reason enough to travel all the way to Northern Ireland however there is something else to consider that might just seal the deal; Lunn’s top quality array of Patek Philippe timepieces.

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Perhaps a pair of Ref 5960’s will tickle your fancy, one in each of Rose Gold and Platinum of course.

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Or maybe you’re more of a Nautilus man? Where better than to see a nautically-themed watch then at the launch site of one of the most famous ships in modern history?

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There are also some great models for the ladies that we looked at, like the stunning Ref 4968 set with 273 diamonds on the case and 32 diamonds on the buckle.

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Obviously if you are interested in purchasing any of the pieces you can direct your inquiries to Nick Megarry personally. 

To learn more about Lunn’s Jewellers please visit their official website here.

Photos by James N Cole for WatchAnish.com

 

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