Last year, without much fanfare, Panerai unveiled two watches – Luminor Perpetual Calendar GoldtechTM (PAM00742) and Luminor Perpetual Calendar PlatinumtechTM (PAM00715) - the first watches, in a long time from the watchmaker, to sport the perpetual calendar complication, paired with a GMT function. What’s more, they had a new movement - the P.4100. For 2022, Panerai is adding the Luminor GoldtechTM Calendario Perpetuo (PAM01269), with a striking new dial design, to its range. This limited edition ‘experience’ watch (33 pieces), is set to strengthen the presence of perpetual calendars in Panerai’s portfolio.
The 44mm cushion-shaped watch is cased in Panerai’s proprietary GoldtechTM material, made with 75% gold with platinum, and 24% copper, giving it a red hue; this makes the GoldtechTM highly resistant to oxidation and corrosion, and also makes it hardier than pink or yellow gold. The dial is smoked sapphire crystal, and almost like a skeleton watch, it provides a view of the day and date discs that rotate beneath it with the movement’s functioning. This is made of the same material as the watch glass, specifically called Al2O3, which is 99,99% pure and is really hard at 1800-2000 vickers.
Atop this base rest the applied, luminous Arabic numerals and indexes, with windows carved out for the day and date at 3 o’clock. The luminous pencil hour and minutes hands have a companion in the GMT indicator. At 9 o’clock, on a translucently finished subdial, the trademark small seconds shares space with the day / night indicator. At 6 o’clock, ‘Calendario Perpetuo’ rests. For the first time, the Perpetual Calendar Goldtech™ is available with polished case and bezel. The watch is finished with a black patina matte-finished alligator strap, with a trapezoidal pin buckle in Panerai GoldtechTM. A screwdriver to remove the buckle accompanies the watch, along with a black rubber second strap. The watch is water-resistant up to 50 meters.
“We launched the perpetual calendar last year with two special references - PAM715 in platinum and PAM742 in Goldtech, which have got a tremendous response from our consumers and the demand is much higher than what we could produce. They were our first step into expanding our product portfolio in the perpetual calendar space and we are glad to witness such an overwhelming response,” says Jean-Marc Pontroué.
The dial design is certainly a departure from the minimalist approach that Panerai has always had. That said, it is still more bare than many designs out there and continues to emphasise the readability of the watch. “Compared to the competitors the dial side display is simple to read, with the same DNA as our other watches displaying a date,” says Pontroue.
Adds Pontroue: “The smoked sapphire crystal as a material is incredibly hard and hence quite durable. It is made out of pure aluminium oxide which has been gone through a process of crystallization. It is in fact, one of the best materials to use and protect a watch dial against any shock. It's also one of the most scratch-resistant materials. The beauty of the smoked sapphire crystal used in the perpetual calendar dial allows us to provide complete visibility of the day and date discs, providing an uninterrupted view of the interior architecture of the watch, which is very fascinating. Another thing for us to remember as a manufacture is that when using a material like this is that it requires a lot of precision to be sliced, grounded and polished, using special tools which are expensive and time-consuming.
The P.4100 movement truly is a thing of beauty. Flip the watch over and you see further functions on display under the sapphire caseback. A month and leap year indicator is set on the top left, underneath which rests the four-digit year indicator. The bottom left is where the power indicator is set, in this case, up to three days. The movement does not require any tools for setting the day, date, month, and year – this is done through the crown itself, rotating it in either direction. Adjustments can also be made during month-end periods or near midnight, without any fear of harming the movement. The P.4100 features a 22-karat engraved (alongside the brand logo and name) micro-rotor, which winds and stores energy in two barrels, and beats at 4Hz. It features a stop-seconds reset function and a device to stop the balance wheel. The watch has a total for 429 components.
To add to that, the PAM01269 is an ‘Experience Edition’ watch. A concept started by Panerai in 2019 with the Submersible models, the idea caters to extremely limited edition Panerai watches that are accompanied by an ‘experience’ that heightens the essence of that timepiece. Owners of the Luminor GoldtechTM Calendario Perpetuo will be invited to the city of Florence and the surrounding Tuscan countryside to familiarise them with the brand’s origins. This would be done via immersive set-ups like dining and tours of historical sites to give patrons a chance to delve deep into the history of the brand. The watch will also be accompanied by an exclusive NFT, created by an artist for the occasion. This NFT will also unlock information tailored to each traveller’s itinerary, eventually also unlocking benefits for owners, over different phases. In fact, early last month Panerai had announced that eventually all its watches will be accompanied by the NFT.
A perpetual calendar, created in-house and with a strong design has been a long time coming at Panerai. And the PAM01269 has been worth the wait.
Images: Courtesy Panerai