Christie's Watch Auction Soars to $29 Million Total

  • November 15, 2011 17:06

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Gold, enamel, ruby and diamond-set keyless lever scarab-form pendant Vacheron Constantin watch manufactured in 1910.

A pink gold Patek Philippe wristwatch and James Bond's Mythical Rolex were among the star lots that sparked a nine-hour bidding marathon at Christie's Geneva auction of Important Watches The sale totalled 26,183,538 Swiss francs ($29,168,461).

In all, 222 buyers from 39 different countries vied for the fine watches, with a strong contingent of bidders from Asia, particularly China. Private collectors competed against museums and investment funds.

Patek Philippe watches broke world records to lead the sale. Of note, a recently rediscovered and rare pink gold calendar wristwatch with moon phases, ref. 3448, manufactured in 1968 by Patek Philippe, sold for SFr.2,099,000 ($2,338,286) (from an estimate of SFr.500,000-1,000,000), setting a world record price for this reference at auction.

Pink gold calendar wristwatch with moon phases, ref. 3448, manufactured in 1968 by Patek Philippe.

James Bond's Mythical Rolex wristwatch specially adapted for ‘Live and Let Die’ by film production designer Syd Caine in 1972 sold immediately after the morning session for SFr. 219,000 ($243,966).

Rolex, along with Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet, and Cartier, also saw outstanding results, as well as independent brands such as F.P. Journe.  Standouts included the 1953 Rolex ‘Neptune’ ref. 8382 (selling for five times its estimate for SFr.609,000), a 1945 Rolex ref. 3525, and the 1910 Vacheron Constantin scarab-form pendant watch.

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