Christie’s Hong Kong Watches Department has announced two live sales on 27 November, at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
27 November will kick start with the Afternoon Sale ‘AN EXCEPTIONAL SEASON OF WATCHES INCLUDING THE CHAMPION COLLECTION (PART 1)’ which features 201 lots. The full Champion Collection comprises around 500 modern and contemporary timepieces that will be offered at Christie’s starting this season through to 2022.
Next, the Evening Sale ‘TIMELESS MARVELS’ at which 17 marvels from the enchanting world of horology will be going to the highest and luckiest bidders.
Alongside on view is a non-selling exhibition of The Triazza Collection, which comprises five stunning Patek Philippe timepieces. Bound to elicit gasps of awe and sighs of desire are the following remarkable watches: the Ref. 2330 observatory tested; the Esmond Bradley Martin Ref. 605 HU cloisonné dial ‘North America’; the Ref. 2523 with cloisonne enamel North America map; the ‘Eric Clapton’ Ref. 2499 in platinum, the only one in private hands; and the Ref. 2499 Double Signed Tiffany & Co.
Evening Auction – “TIMELESS MARVELS”
(1) Attributed to Piguet & Capt. An 18k gold and enamel, pearl-set musical, perfume flask and automaton amphora-form watch made for the Chinese market, circa 1805.
Believed to have been made for the highest levels of Chinese society, in circa 1805, it is known that the twin of this creation is stored and exhibited in the Patek Philippe museum. In very good condition for its age, this marvel of rarity is absolutely fresh to the market and is being presented for the first time at auction. Estimate: HK$ 2,400,000-7,200,000 / US$ 300,000-900,000.
(2) Attributed to Piguet & Capt. An 18K gold and enamel necessaire with enamel miniature, concealed clock, perfume bottle, pencil holder, ear-spoon and original winding key, believe came from the Chinese Emperor’s Summer Palace of the Qing dynasty, circa 1805.
This extremely beautiful and exquisitely made gold and enamel nécessaire with concealed watch is one of a matching pair made in Geneva for the Chinese market at the dawn of the 19th Century. Interestingly, that piece was accompanied by a hand-written document stating that it had been part of the collection from the Chinese Emperor’s Summer Palace. Estimate: HK$ 800,000-2,400,000 / US$ 100,000-300,000.
(3) Andries Vermeulen. An 22k gold, lapis, ruby, emerald and diamond-set quarter repeating pair case pocket watch with enamel miniature and Chinese dragons with 5 cLaws on the case, made for the Chinese Imperial family of the Qing dynasty, circa 1740.
This sumptuous richly jewelled gold quarter repeating pair cased watch featuring the royal symbol of the five-clawed dragon, was made for the Emperor of China, QianLong. Beautifully engraved and set with diamonds, rubies, emeralds, panels of lapis lazuli and an enamel portrait of a European lady, it exemplifies the exceptional European works of art created in the eighteenth century for export to China.
The present watch is one of a small group of very similarly decorated watches featuring the five-clawed dragon that were delivered to the Chinese royal family. Estimate: HK$ 800,000-2,400,000 / US$ 100,000-300,000.
(4) Attributed to Piguet & Capt. An 18k pink gold, diamond-set and enamel rectangular-shaped keywound quarter repeating ring watch with automaton, adjustable shank and original fitted box and purpose-made key, shank stamped with the french import mark for 1809-1819, circa 1810.
An amazing feat of miniaturization combined with the art of the jeweller and enamellist, it is the only ring watch known to have the mechanism for the watch and quarter repeating automaton fitted within the confines of such a small space. Only a handful of ring watches with complications have appeared on the open market to date.
Amongst these exceedingly scarce specimens, the present ring watch occupies a very special position: it features a particularly rare and unusual characteristic of a quarter repeating mechanism combined with two automatons in the form of two cupids in whose arms are striking the past hours and quarters alternately on two small bells atop the dial.
Moreover, not only are the bezel and the visible balance diamond-set but, for a ring watch, the dial has the exceptional feature of having a painted scene. Estimate: HK$ 800,000-2,400,000 / us$ 100,000-300,000
(5) Attributed to Charles Abraham Bruguier the younger. A tortoiseshell, gilt and enamel singing bird box with winding key, retailed by Patek Philippe, circa 1880.
This charming singing bird box is an exquisite example of the high quality of objects produced by the most eminent craftsmen in Geneva. It is also one of the few bird boxes known that is retailed by Patek Philippe & Co.
The movement, although apparently unsigned, can be attributed stylistically to the eminent maker Charles-Abraham Bruguier the younger. Estimate: HK$ 400,000-800,000 / US$ 50,000-100,000.
Patek Philippe Repeaters
(1) Patek Philippe 18k gold minute repeating wristwatch with blackened hands and index, large subsidiary second dial, repeating slider and crown, Ref. 2419, retailed by Cartier, manufactured in 1946.
This extraordinary and unique reference 2419 wristwatch is not only highly important as a mid-century minute repeater but incredibly it is also retailed by Cartier, punch numbered and fully confirmed by the Cartier archives.
Sold to the Henry Stern Watch Agency in New York in 1950 before being sold to its first owner by Cartier’s New York branch in the same year. The balance bridge of the movement is engraved with Patek Philippe’s export code ‘HOX’ confirming that the watch was destined for the American market. Estimate: HK$ 12,000,000-20,000,000 / US$ 1,500,000-2,500,000.
(2) Patek Philippe. An 18k Gold Cushion-Shaped Minute Repeating Wristwatch with Breguet Numerals, Manufactured in 1930. Estimate: HK$ 6,000,000-12,000,000 / US$ 750,000-1,500,000.
(3) Patek Philippe. An 18k gold minute repeating wristwatch, ref. 2524/1, Manufactured in 1955. Estimate: HK$ 6,000,000-12,000,000 / US$ 750,000-1,500,000.
Vintage Patek Philippe Marvels with Exceptional Provenance
(1) Patek Philippe extremely rare and historical important 18k gold split second chronograph wristwatch with Breguet numerals, Ref. 1436, sold to Henry Graves Jr. in 1947, manufactured in 1946.
Mr. Henry Graves Jr., the legendary patron of Patek Philippe, ordered this 18k gold split second chronograph wristwatch with Breguet numerals in 1946 and acquired it in 1947.
Ref.1436 is Patek Philippe’s first split seconds chronograph wristwatch produced in series. The first generation, of which this watch is a part, was made until the late 1940s. Since its introduction to the market in 1938 and discontinued in 1971, only 140 examples are made during the 33 years production period.
As one of the finest examples to ever appear on the market, the present example features applied gold Breguet numerals, often considered the most attractive dial variation. It is also thought to be the least-commonly made dial for this reference, with most examples featuring baton or a combination of baton and Arabic numerals. To date, just over a dozen of Ref. 1436 models have surfaced featuring such a dial. This extremely rare and historical timepiece is a true rarity as it last appeared at auction about ten years ago. Estimate: HK$11,500,000-23,500,000/ US$ 1,500,000-3,000,000
(2) Patek Philippe 18k gold perpetual calendar wristwatch with sweep centre seconds and moon phases, Ref. 2497, manufactured in 1951.
This phenomenal watch is one of the most significant reference 2497s in private hands today. Furthermore, it was purchased new from the Patek Philippe salon in Geneva by Reginald H. Fullerton Jr., the grandson of the firm’s most famous client, Henry Graves Jr., a provenance that is considered irreproachable in the world of Patek Philippe.
Regarded as the ‘prototype’ watch and starting point for reference 2497, it is of immense historical importance as the very first example of the reference and also in the wider development of Patek Philippe’s ‘golden age’ complicated wristwatches during the 1950s. Indeed, this was the very watch that was displayed on the Patek Philippe stand at the Basel Fair in 1953 to promote the proposed new model. Estimate: HK$ 13,200,000-23,500,000 / US$ 1,700,000-3,000,000.
Rare Pocket Watches and Dome Clocks
- Patek Philippe 18k white gold openface keyless lever watch with wood miniature and a unique associated 18k white gold, wood and ruby-set Patek Philippe watch stand, Ref. 982/181G-001, made to celebrate the company’s 175th anniversary in 2014. Estimate: HK$ 1,600,000-3,200,000 / US$ 200,000-400,000.
- Patek Philippe gilt brass solar powered dome clock with cloisonné enamel depicting “l’aventure de la voile” by Elisabeth Perusset Lagger, Ref. 1155, manufactured in 1978. Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$1,000,000-2,000,000 / US$ 125,000-250,000.
- Patek Philippe 18k gold openface keyless lever watch with enamel miniature depicting “country scene of patrician life” by Mrs. Pellarin-Leroy and a unique associated 18k gold, enamel and diamond-set Patek Philippe. Watch stand, ref. 866/22, manufactured in 1972, watch stand ref. 9624. Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$1,200,000-2,000,000 / US$ 150,000-250,000.
- Patek Philippe gilt brass solar powered dome clock with cloisonné enamel depicting “Tristan de Leonois” by Luce Chappaz, Ref. 1123, manufactured in 1981. Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$1,000,000-2,000,000 / US$ 125,000-250,000).
Exceptionally Rare Modern Patek Philippe Wristwatches
- Patek Philippe stainless steel split seconds single button chronograph wristwatch with salmon colour dial with Breguet numerals, Ref. 5950/1A-001, circa 2015. It is believed to be made in 10 examples only. Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$ 2,400,000-4,800,000 / US$ 300,000-600,000.
- Patek Philippe platinum automatic minute repeating perpetual calendar wristwatch with moon phases, 24 hour, leap year, day/night indication and black dial with Breguet numeral, ref. 3974, manufactured in 2001. The only known example to the market, with a case made by the legendary Jean-Pierre Hagmann. Estimate: HK$ 12,500,000-20,000,000 / US$ 1,600,000-2,600,000.
- Patek Philippe 18k pink gold tonneau-shaped automatic minute repeating perpetual calendar wristwatch with retrograde date, moon phases, leap year indication and black dial with diamond index, ref. 5013, circa 2000. The only known example and never seen before at auction nor in literature. Part I of The Champion Collection, Estimate: HK$ 2,800,000-5,600,000 /US$ 350,000-700,000.
Afternoon Auction – “An Exceptional Season Of Watches Including The Champion Collection (Part 1)”
- Voutilainen platinum dual time wristwatch with lacquering and gold dust decorated dial and movement made by the Unryan workshop in Japan, circa 2015. From the Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$ 600,000-1,200,000 / US$ 75,000-150,000.
- Laurent Ferrier platinum tourbillon wristwatch with black enamel grand feu dial and Breguet indexes, Galet classic ‘piece unique’, circa 2013. From the Part I of The Champion Collection. Estimate: HK$ 400,000-800,000 / US$ 50,000-100,000.
- Richard Mille pink sapphire, 18k pink gold and diamond-set skeletonized lady’s automatic wristwatch with mother-of-pearl dial, Ref. RM 07-02, circa 2016. One of the five examples made. Estimate: HK$ 9,500,000-17,500,000 / US$ 1,200,000-2,200,000.
- Rolex stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with bracelet, Daytona model, retailed by Tiffany & CO., ref. 6239, circa 1966. Estimate: HK$ 1,500,000-2,500,000 / US$ 190,000-320,000.
- Rolex 18k gold chronograph wristwatch with black dial and bracelet, ref. 6238, circa 1967. One of the two known examples only. Estimate: HK$ 3,000,000-6,000,000 / US$ 380,000-750,000.
The Triazza Collection
The Triazza Collection is an unprecedented collection of five exceptional, rare, and important Patek Philippe timepieces manufactured from 1924 – 1987, astutely acquired by a prominent private Asian collector.
The non-selling exhibition will offer watch lovers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to appreciate the exceptionally rare and beautiful vintage treasures by Patek Philippe, which encompass a possibly one and only large-size Geneva Observatory 1st Prize winning tourbillon ref. 2330 with both cases and both dials surviving intact, made in 1924; the Esmond Bradley Martin ref. 605 HU cloisonné dial ‘North America’ manufactured in 1950; one of only three Patek Philippe ref. 2523 in yellow gold known to exist with a cloisonné map dial depicting North America, manufactured in 1955; the only platinum ref. 2499/100 in private hands, formerly the property of Eric Clapton; as well as an 18k gold ref. 2499 with double-signed dial, retailed by Tiffany & Co., made in 1977.
Quick glance on auction schedule/lots
Date of auctions: 27 November 2021
Place: Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
Afternoon Sale: an exceptional season of watches incl. The champion collection part 1
201 lots, Total Low Estimate: HK$ 110,993,000
Evening Sale: Timeless Marvels
17 lots, Total Low Estimate: HK$ 76,900,000
Source/Image Credit: Christie’s Hong Kong