Masterpieces of horology to lead Sotheby's Geneva auction of Important Watches on 13 November
SOTHEBY’S AUTUMN SALE OF IMPORTANT WATCHES ON 13 NOVEMBER TO BE LED BY ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT VINTAGE WRISTWATCHES IN THE WORLD “THE ASPREY” A HISTORICALLY IMPORTANT AND POSSIBLY UNIQUE WRISTWATCH PATEK PHILIPPE, REFERENCE 2499 RETAILED BY ASPREY OF LONDON Estimate $ 2-4 million OTHER HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE: VINTAGE MASTERPIECES FROM PATEK PHILIPPE EXCEPTIONALLY RARE VINTAGE ROLEX
Geneva, 25 October 2018 – Sotheby’s Geneva is delighted to unveil the highlights of its upcoming auction of Important Watches, to take place on 13 November. The sale, at Mandarin Oriental, Geneva, will feature a highly impressive selection of extremely rare pieces, which will include “The Asprey” by Patek Philippe, one of the most important vintage wristwatches in the world, estimated at CHF 2-4 million ($2,040,000 – 4,040,000). This museum-quality piece will lead a selection of exceptional and rare vintage watches by Patek Philippe. With very strong market demand for extraordinary vintage Rolex, we are also delighted to present a number of outstanding wristwatches from the manufacturer from the 1950s to the 1970s, each boasting characteristics highly prized by today’s collectors. The selection of contemporary watches in the sale is led by a unique and breathtaking piece by Richard Mille, ‘The Falcon’ – an exceptional example of the prowess of this important independent watchmaker.
Speaking ahead of the sale, Sam Hines, Global Head of Sotheby’s Watches, commented, “Sotheby’s Geneva is thrilled to present our forthcoming sale. We are very excited with our selection of vintage watches, led by the Patek Philippe 2499 retailed by Asprey. Many of the watches are fresh to the market including the Pulsations dial ref. 6239 and Oyster Sotto by Rolex and the white gold ref. 3448 by Patek Philippe. This is our strongest selection for some years and we are delighted for you to join us in Geneva at our presale exhibition which opens on Saturday the 10th November.”
Exceptional in every way: known simply as ‘The Asprey’, this Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph reference 2499 will lead the Geneva auction on 13 November. Manufactured in 1952 and sold in 1956, this Patek Philippe 2499 1st series was last seen on the market at Sotheby’s in 2006 where it was sold for a staggering 2.2 million Swiss Francs, which not only made it the most expensive 1st series in gold but the highest price ever paid for a 2499. Since then, the watch has become a legend amongst the market and collecting community. The watch has remained in the same private collection since first being discovered in 2006.
Retailed by Asprey of London in 1956, this is the most complicated Patek Philippe sold by the prestigious London jeweller. The dial is double signed by both the manufacture and Asprey, the case is stamped with London hallmarks and the date letter for 1955 and the inside case back too bears London import marks and the Asprey stamp. Lot 220, estimate CHF 2,000,000 – 4,000,000 / $ 2,020,000 – 4,040,000.
VINTAGE MASTERPIECES FROM PATEK PHILIPPE
Two other watches by Patek Philippe stand out in particular among Sotheby’s November selection of watches. The first in our upcoming sale is an extraordinary example of the legendary reference 1518 – perhaps the most significant milestone in modern watchmaking history. One of the nicest examples to appear in recent years, this perpetual calendar chronograph in yellow gold from 1950 is awe-inspiring. It illustrates Patek Philippe’s excellence in creating highly complicated wristwatches with simple, stunning aesthetics and has been preserved in a very fine condition. Lot 225, estimate CHF 300,000 – 500,000 / $303,000 – 505,000.
Beloved for its understated aesthetic, Patek Philippe’s reference 3448 was the first automatic perpetual calendar wristwatch produced in series by the manufacture. While at first glance one notices the apertures displaying the day, month and phases of the moon and the subsidiary dial for the date, the huge desirability of this watch, for those in the know, also stems from its highly complex perpetual calendar feature. The November auction will feature an example of the reference, made in white gold in 1977: one of only around 50 known on the market, in fantastic, original condition. Lot 224, estimate CHF 200,000 – 300,000 / $202,000 – 303,000.
ROLEX: THREE EXCEPTIONAL VINTAGE CHRONOGRAPHS
Fresh to the market and previously unknown, we will also be offering an extraordinary Rolex Daytona reference 6239 featuring a ‘Pulsometer’. Watches like these, known as medical Daytonas because of the external blue pulsations scale graduated for 15 beats, are among the rarest chronographs ever made. The example to be offered was purchased by the original owner while on holiday and is in outstanding condition – it ticks all the right boxes for a watch to be considered a trophy. Lot 216, estimate CHF 500,000 – 1,000,000 / $505,000 – 1,010,000.
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