Phillips has unveiled the complete catalogue for The New York Watch Auction: EIGHT, featuring a selection of over 130 exceptional and rare timepieces, including the previously announced, historically important Roger Smith Pocket Watch Number Two.
The sale showcases an outstanding selection of both established and independent watchmakers, with important timepieces such as a fresh-to-the-market, vintage Patek Philippe reference 2481 with stunning “Pristine Forest’ cloisonné enamel dial, a rare and exceptionally well-preserved Philippe Dufour Simplicity measuring 37mm, and many others.
On the heels of a successful world tour, the watches will be publicly exhibited at 432 Park Avenue in New York, commencing 3 June, with the auction taking place over the course of two days from 10-11 June.
In celebration of the auction, on 9 June, Phillips will host a conversation with Roger Smith prior to a private screening of The Watchmaker’s Apprentice – the 2015 film featuring Roger Smith and his mentor, George Daniels.
The New York Watch Auction: EIGHT – Highlights
Lot 89: PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 2481 “Pristine Forest”
Estimate $600,000 – 1,200,000
This previously unknown and extraordinary Patek Philippe wristwatch comes with a cloisonné enamel dial. Consigned by the family of the original owner, the watch has remained in the family for nearly 70 years since its purchase in 1954.
The vibrant colors and workmanship displayed on the spectacular dial’s scene, referred to by the brand as “tropical landscape,” “forêt vierge,” or “pristine forest,” exemplifies the absolute mastery of craft that places Patek Philippe at the apex for collectors worldwide.
Patek Philippe’s reference 2481 is one of the brand’s most iconic time-only watches of the mid-20th century. At 36.8mm in diameter, it is affectionately known by collectors as “King Size”, and when introduced into the market in 1950, it was one of the largest wristwatches made by the brand during the 20th century. Cloisonné enamel is considered one of the finest and most complex dial fabrication techniques in high horology.
Due to their cost and the limited number of skilled artisans capable of such work, cloisonné enamel dials were made in small numbers and very few were sold during the mid-20th century.
The present watch is preserved in outstanding condition, and the dial is free of any restorations. It is believed to be one of only 10 examples produced with this dial type. It has been nearly a decade since a previously unknown cloisonné enamel reference 2481 has appeared on the market.
Lot 30: PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 5531R “World Time Minute Repeater”
Estimate $900,000 – 1,800,000
This special edition Patek Philippe reference 5531R-012 was first introduced as part of the brand’s official 2018 collection from “The Art of Watches Grand Exhibition”, and then incorporated into the regular production catalogue the following year.
Produced in extremely limited quantities, it features a stunning cloisonné enamel dial depicting the Lavaux Vineyard Terraces, a UNESCO Heritage site, on the shores of Lake Geneva.
The result of painstaking development, the most complex challenge solved by Patek Philippe was to have the watch chime on the local time of the city displayed at 12 o’clock. This was achieved by incorporating an hour snail that is driven by the world time mechanism.
This fresh-to-the-market, minute repeating world time with cloisonné enamel dial is the height of luxury and complication. It is both a work of art and a functional time piece and is one of only a handful of examples ever offered at auction. Presented in brand new, unworn condition it is offered complete with its full set of accessories.
Lot 11: PHILIPPE DUFOUR, Simplicity 37 “No. 70”
Estimate: $300,000 – 600,000
Dufour introduced the Simplicity in the year 2000, inspired by the traditional watchmaking methods in the Vallée de Joux. The Simplicity was originally presented in a 34 mm case and a larger 37 mm case, like the present lot, was subsequently offered.
Now discontinued, Dufour created slightly more than 200 examples of the original Simplicity. Its rarity, coupled with elegant looks, has propelled the watch to ‘grail’ status today. Fitted with a lacquer dial, the present watch features black Roman numerals, which contrast wonderfully against the white lacquered background.
The larger case size of 37mm sits beautifully on the wrist, and the present lot is complete, accompanied by its original certificate and presentation box. Offered in exceptionally well-preserved condition, it is a trophy watch for collectors.
Lot 27: PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 3450 “Padellone Bollino Rosso”
Estimate: $300,000 – 600,000
The Patek Philippe reference 3450 model represents one of the pinnacles of watchmaking. The present watch, manufactured in 1982, is an extremely rare and early first generation fitted with a “red dot” leap year indicator.
Earliest examples of the reference featured this “red dot,” also known as “bollino rosso,” charmingly nicknamed by Italian collectors, to indicate the fourth year of the leap year cycle, while later examples would instead display the Roman numeral ‘IV’ for the leap year.
Enhancing its desirability is its exceptional condition. It retains very sharp and well-defined bevels, original, superb satin finishing on the case and on the lugs, and crisp, perfectly preserved hallmarks, with a flawless dial.
Patek Philippe produced very limited quantities of reference 3450, and the present example stands out with its “red dot” indicator and superb state of preservation.
Lot 107: ROLEX, Ref. 116769TBR GMT-Master II “Ice”
Estimate: $250,000 – 500,000
Set with over 30 carats of flawless round-cut diamonds, as well as invisible-set baguette diamonds to the bezel and center links of the bracelet, this lavish GMT-Master II fittingly earned the nickname “Ice” upon its release in 2007. Now discontinued with extremely limited production, no other example of the reference has previously appeared at auction, reiterating its rarity and exclusivity.
The only surfaces free of diamonds are the edges of the bezel, the crown, and the reverse of the case and bracelet. The ultimate flagship, most expensive Rolex ever at the time of its release, it maintained that distinction for over a decade. Blackened white gold surrounds on the handset give legibility to the dial, which is complemented by aquatic, wavy pavé diamond stripes.
Unusual and rarely seen in Rolex gem-set watches, even the sides of the bracelet are pavé diamond-set as well. Weighing just over half a pound, in exceptional condition and with its original guarantee and boxes, the GMT-Master “Ice” is splendidly extravagant and unabashedly luxurious.
Lot 46: F.P. JOURNE, Tourbillon Souverain “Black Label”
Estimate: $200,000 – 400,000
Francois-Paul Journe launched his namesake brand with the motto “invenit et fecit” (“invented and made”) in 1999, first introducing the Tourbillon Souverain Remointoire d’Egalité, known as “T.” In 2003, Francois-Paul Journe upgraded the “T” to the “TN” model (“Tourbillon Nouveau”), with an unprecedented 18K pink gold movement, incorporating the deceptively complex deadbeat seconds complication.
“Seconde Morte,” the art of making time stand still, is the French term for “dead beat seconds.” This complication requires the utmost precision to reliably stop and restart the seconds hand as the escapement continues to beat—not moving until one second has elapsed, then jumping to the next second. Enhanced with a deadbeat seconds complication, the timepiece with constant force mechanism was designed for highly accurate, precision timekeeping.
Part of the ultra-rare and exclusive Black Label collection, the present model was available only to pre-existing Journe owners. It comes with a semi-gloss black dial and complete with its original boxes and guarantee.
Lot 22: ROLEX, Ref. 6241 Cosmograph Daytona “Paul Newman”
Estimate: $200,000 – 400,000
The reference 6241 was produced from approximately 1966 to 1969 with scholarship estimating no more than 3,000 examples were manufactured, with only a small percentage fitted with the iconic “Paul Newman” dial.
Produced in stainless steel as well as 14 karat and 18 karat gold, this reference was the first Daytona offered with a black acrylic bezel, offering an alternative to the steel bezel found on the reference 6239. Officially named the “exotic” dial by Rolex and now known worldwide as “Paul Newman” dials, they are now the most coveted vintage chronographs amongst Rolex collectors.
The present ref. 6241 is preserved in outstanding overall condition and is accompanied by its original boxes and guarantee paper. The “Paul Newman” dial is flawless, free of any blemishes, and the cherry-red “Daytona” designation at 6 o’clock is vibrant, contrasting sharply with the ebony background.
Lot 26: PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 5711/1A-014 Nautilus “Green Dial, Factory Single Sealed”
In 2021, Patek Philippe announced the imminent discontinuation of the reference 5711/1A in its entirety and introduced a special “olive green” dial to only be produced for one year to mark its departure.
Alongside a baguette diamond-set bezel variant, these two final 5711s, alongside the limited run of 170 “Tiffany Blue” double signed pieces, would mark the end of the production of the stainless steel “Jumbo” Nautilus.
Collectors were instantly drawn to the subtle hue of the green dial and of course the limited nature of the release, but allocations were limited and extremely selective. Now discontinued, it is a very rare and attractive variant of one of the most iconic sports watch references of all time. Further adding to the present lot’s importance, it is one of less than a handful known to remain factory sealed, offered here by the original owner having never been opened, with the entirety of its original accessories.
Lot 136: F.P. JOURNE, Chronomètre à Résonance “Ruthenium, No. 99”
Estimate: $160,000 – 280,000
Manufactured through 2005 as a 99-piece limited edition, the Ruthenium Chronomètre á Résonance is certainly a sight to behold, boasting a striking grey dial forged from ruthenium-coated white gold. The charcoal canvas is finely texturized, offering a stimulating addition of depth and dimension to the moody backdrop.
Both visually and mechanically impressive, the movement can be observed via its sapphire caseback. The two balance wheels are strategically placed almost touching one another, which forces the dissipated energy of each to be caught by the other – correcting their timing errors and improving their overall accuracy.
Numbered 99 of 99, this Chronomètre à Résonance is a coveted “end piece”, having first been sold in 2002. It is complete with all of its original accessories.
Lot 47: HALTER BARNES, Perpetual Antiqua
Estimate: $120,000 – 240,000
This fresh-to-market Halter Barnes Perpetual Antiqua in 18K yellow gold watch comes with the earliest known serial number ever seen publicly.
Preserved in exceptional condition and consigned by the original owner with its hardly-ever-seen original accessories, the present lot is one of only 17 total examples of Vianney Halter’s Perpetual Antiqua that have come to auction.
The Perpetual Antiqua, bearing the movement number 4Y, is the earliest example to come to auction and is accompanied by its original riveted porthole winding box. The eldest of the Vianney Halter pieces in this sale, it is the seminal wristwatch that gave birth to the design codes of a brand.
Lot 70: ZENITH, Chronomaster Original Pink “Unique Piece for Susan G. Komen”
Estimate: $8,000 – 16,000
ZENITH and Phillips present this unique Chronomaster Original Pink timepiece with 100% of proceeds supporting Susan G. Komen, the world’s leading breast cancer organization. The auctioning of this singular piece follows the launch of the Chronomaster Original Pink in October 2022, Breast Cancer Awareness month, to benefit Komen.
The present chronograph is a one-of-a-kind unique piece with diamond-set lugs similar to the brand’s iconic A386. Crafted in a 38mm steel case and equipped with the latest generation of the El Primero automatic high-frequency chronograph calibre with 1/10th of a second measurement, the Chronomaster Original Pink stands out with its striking metallic pink dial, honoring the color globally associated with breast cancer awareness. The piece comes with the offer of an additional strap of the winning bidder’s choosing as well as a certificate stating the watch’s uniqueness.
Auction: Session I 10am EST 10 June, Session II 10am EST 11 June
Auction viewing: 3 – 9 June
Location: 432 Park Avenue, New York, NY, United States, 10022
More information: https://www.phillips.com/auctions/auction/NY080123