Here are our five picks from the upcoming Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN to be conducted by Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo at the Hotel La Réserve in Geneva, Switzerland on May 12th and 13th, 2017. As you know, Phillips Watches is now the benchmark when it comes to watch auctions after several record-breaking auctions in Geneva, Hong Kong and New York. Fully curated by Aurel Bacs and his team, the Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN lines up to be another record-breaking auction where 'King Midas' —as we refer to Mr. Aurel Bacs of course in a very respectful way as anything he touches turns into real crazy money at the watch auctions— will bring the gavel down after giving his usual 'Fair Warning'.
Disclaimer: Since Phillips Watches is the only one that can provide you with a 'Condition Report' for any of the watches in their auctions, our live photography or verbiage regarding these watches is for your viewing/reading pleasure only. Our images or verbiage, should never be used in lieu of a condition report from Phillips. Regardless, it is important to clarify that our live photographs have not been subject to retouching or manipulation. Therefore, dust, the actual wear on watches, fingerprints and lint left from perusing the watches might still be present in our images and we apologize in advance for it.
With a total of 185 lots offered, the Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN will follow the Phillips Daytona Ultimatum Sale where 32 incredible and ultra rare Rolex Daytonas will be offered on May 12th, 2018. With a nice selection that includes the usual Rolex Triple Calendars ref. 6062, vintage Rolex GMT Masters, Daytonas, Pre-Daytonas, Submariners and iconic Patek Philippe watches amongst others, the upcoming GWA7 will be another interesting auction to follow closely. During this auction, one of the highlights will be the Omega watch gifted by RCA Records to Elvis Presley in 1961 with a very special engraving on its case back. More about this watch right here.
Our five picks for the upcoming Phillips Watches Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN right below.
1. Rolex Triple Calendar with Moonphase ref. 6062 'Stelline'
Lot 128 is a real favorite. Fully infused with Rolex's genetic codes with its Oyster case, in-house automatic movement and jubilee bracelet, the reference 6062 further features a complication only seen in another reference: a triple calendar and moonphase display. The other model, reference 8171 had a different case with snap on back. The above elements merged together result in a certain cool debonaire elegance.
Launched in 1950 and produced for only a handful of years, this reference was available in stainless steel, yellow and pink gold, and offered with different dial variations. The faceted star dial, as seen on the present watch, is one of the most rare and sought after, and enhances its overall appeal. Rolex considered the model a top-of-the-line timepiece, with an in-house automatic movement, and upgraded with a full calendar and moonphase indication. Collectors were so taken with the model they nicknamed it “Stelline”, Italian for “small star”.
When introduced, the 6062 was groundbreaking, as it was the first automatic watch with triple calendar and moonphase indication housed in a water resistant case. The present yellow gold reference 6062 has been part of an important private collection for the past 14 years. Lovingly taken care of during this period it remains in excellent condition. The case is strong, the numerals on the outer track are inky blue, and the day and date apertures are sharp and angular, demonstrating the originality of the dial. In fact the present yellow gold reference 6062 is in our opinion one of the best preserved and most original examples of a reference 6062 in this metal to have ever been seen or offered publicly.
This reference 6062 further comes with its original 18-karat yellow gold Rolex Jubilee bracelet adding inimitable panache to the model. The present example, in its original, unrestored state of preservation, is a wonderful addition to any collection of distinction. And, indeed, an opportunity that the most demanding and educated collectors of vintage wristwatches should not miss. The estimate on this lot is set between CHF400,000-800,000 Swiss Francs.
2. A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Perpetual Platinum on Platinum Bracelet
Launched during the SIHH —Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie— in 2006, the Datograph Perpetual in platinum remained in production until 2011, and since, very few examples have appeared publicly, especially with an accompanying platinum bracelet. The elegant display includes a 60-second counter and a 30-minute counter, as well as indications for the day of the week, month, leap year, and day/night. This model was the first wristwatch manufactured by A. Lange & Söhne to combine a chronograph with a perpetual calendar, and has the additional useful flyback function, which is activated with the top chronograph pusher.
The brand’s signature oversized date apertures are opposite to the comparatively smaller moonphase window. Turning the watch over, one can glimpse the 556 individually hand-finished components, including the free-hand engraved balance cock and delicate "Glashütte" waves throughout. The solid rhodium silver dial creates a pleasant monochromatic effect when paired with the 41mm platinum case and bracelet.
The hint of blue at the day-night indicator and the moonphase aperture provide a subtle complement to the blued steel hands found within the two sub-dials. The watch’s most impressive feat remains the contrasting elements of a delicate dial design and the striking weight of the case. Further enhancing its appeal is the hardly ever seen, factory bracelet made of platinum that was specially ordered by the original owner at great expense. Sumptuous, luxurious, and exquisitely crafted both inside and out, this example of the Datograph Perpetual will delight the seasoned collector. Lot 235 is being offered with an estimate of CHF70,000-100,000 Swiss Francs.
3. Rolex GMT Master ref. 16758 "SARU"
Lot 177 is a heavy, robust and lavishly set with diamonds, sapphires and rubies GMT Master ref. 16758. This variant is nicknamed "SARU", referencing its precious gem-set bezel. The present model, along with reference 6270 and 6269, was the earliest Rolex sports watch to feature precious stones. This concept was incredibly daring in the 1980s, as tool watches and luxury gem-set timepieces resided in two separate spheres.
Rolex in particular excels at the incredibly time-consuming job of setting well-matched and beautiful stones. The sky blue sapphires contrast wonderfully against the ruby baguette stones, truly elevating the present example beyond a standard dual time wristwatch. This example is furthermore engraved with the "Khanjar" logo on the caseback with a crown. Preserved in excellent condition, the case displays crisp edges and sharp hallmarks beneath the lugs.
This particular example in 18K yellow gold and in remarkable condition with one of the most unique looks out there is being offered with an estimate set at CHF150,000-250,000 Swiss Francs.
4. Patek Philippe Automatic Perpetual Calendar ref. 3450
Lot 130, Launched in 1981, reference 3450 was the successor of reference 3448 —Patek Philippe's very first automatic perpetual calendar wristwatch. While physically similar to reference 3448, it most notably features a leap year indicator on the dial. In addition, its case back is slightly smaller and is fitted with a "tongue", enabling it to be easily opened by the wearer. The present watch, manufactured in 1985, is among the very last generation of reference 3450s ever made before the introduction of reference 3940. While the first generation examples were fitted with a "red dot" to indicate the fourth leap year, second generation examples displayed Roman numerals I, II, III and IV, like the present model.
This example is previously unknown and fresh to the auction market. Having been carefully preserved within the same collection for over 25 years, it benefits from the presence of its Certificate of Origin, stating the watch was retailed at the Patek Philippe salon in Geneva. Furthermore it retains its original fitted presentation box. Preserved extremely well, it displays two hallmarks punched on the caseband, and sharp finishes on the side of the case.
Patek Philippe produced very limited quantities of reference 3450, typically casing the model in yellow gold. To date, scholars estimate that Patek Philippe produced only 237 examples in total. As such, fresh gems hardly ever appear at auction. When they do, it's a momentous occasion, allowing the horological community to celebrate another discovery. Estimate set at CHF150,000-250,000 Swiss Francs.
5. Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar Chronograph ref. 1518
Lot 283 a Patek Philippe reference 1518 is a milestone in the history of wristwatches and greatly contributed to the manufacturer's dominant position in the Swiss watchmaking industry. Launched in 1941, in the midst of World War II, reference 1518 is the very first perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch to be made in series. Not only did it set the design elements used by Patek Philippe in all of its subsequent perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatches, but in its own manner greatly contributed to the manufacturer's dominant position in the watchmaking industry and launched the series production of multi-complicated wristwatches within the Swiss industry —at an epoch where multi complications were bespoke orders. Scholarship indicates that only 281 examples of reference 1518 were made between 1941 and 1954, in yellow and pink gold. Today only four in stainless steel are known.
The present lot is in overall beautiful condition and appears on the market only for the second time. The present perpetual calendar chronograph is a very attractive example of this horological milestone. The masculine case has wonderful presence with its long lugs and wide opening for the dial enhancing the impression of size. Bringing life to this superb example of horological ingenuity is the manual caliber 13’’130 Q —for Quantième, “date” in French—, based on a Valjoux caliber 13Q which was modified by the “watchmaker’s watchmaker” Victorin Piguet to incorporate the calendar complications. Renowned case maker, Emile Vichet S.A., was responsible for manufacturing cases for some of Patek Philippe’s most coveted references and the present watch is not an exception as the latter’s Poinçon de Maître key 9, also known as a collective responsibility mark is found beneath the reference and case number inside the case back. Furthermore the case back is stamped with London hallmarks confirming the "mile" base tachymeter scale on the dial.
This reference 1518 has remained in an important private collection since its purchase at auction in 1981 and is returning back to the market 30 years later. The present lot does not only represent and exceptional example of Patek Philippe's unparalleled mechanical expertise but is also a landmark in horological design. Estimate set to CHF250,000-500,000 Swiss Francs.
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