Watches

Phillips’ Geneva Watch Auction Was a White Glove Sale

WatchesMay 11, 2022

Phillips’ Geneva Watch Auction Was a White Glove Sale

It included watches once owned by human rights advocate Simon Wiesenthal and musician Eric Clapton, both selling for more than $1 million.

Phillips’ recent Geneva watch auction totaled $39.4 million, far exceeding its pre-sale estimated high total of $27.3 million, and was 100 percent sold.
Geneva—Watches are still selling strongly at auction, if Phillips’ recent sale in Geneva is any indication. 
 
Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo said its recent “Geneva Watch Auction: XV” totaled $39.4 million, far exceeding the pre-sale total estimate of $14.7 million to $27.3 million. 

Held on May 7 and 8, the watch auction put 196 timepieces on the block, and all of them found a buyer. 
 
Phillips said more than 600 watch collectors gathered at the live event at La Réserve Hotel to participate in person, while 1,800 more bidders competed online. 
 
The top lot of the auction was a Patek Philippe perpetual calendar Ref. 1518 in pink gold with a pink dial, which sold above its pre-sale estimate when it garnered $3.3 million from a phone bidder. 
 
This was followed by a Rolex. Ref. 6239, nicknamed “The Crazy Doc,” which was once owned by musician Eric Clapton, which sold for $1.7 million. It is the only known yellow gold Ref. 6239 with a pulsations dial, Phillips said. 
 
At No. 3 was “The Simon Wiesenthal” watch, which garnered $1.4 million.  
 
The piece was manufactured in 1941 and once owned by human rights champion and Holocaust survivor Simon Wiesenthal. It first appeared on the market in 2007, when his family consigned it to auction. 
 
It is one of only two known Patek Philippe Ref. 1503 watches with a black lacquered dial and Breguet numerals, according to the auction house.  
 
See the Top Lots in Phillips’ Recent Geneva Watch Auction

Phillips also said F.P. Journe watches performed “extremely well” at the auction, with many models selling for well above their pre-sale estimates, including the F.P. Journe Octa Zadiaque power reserve, which sold for $813,409. 
 
The only example of an Octa Zodiaque in pink gold, the watch was made for the Children Action Foundation in 2005. Phillips will donate the entire buyer’s premium from the sale of the watch in its auction to the charity. 
 
“Geneva Watch Auction: XV” followed The Royal Oak 50th watch auction on May 6, which totaled $22.4 million, bringing the weekend’s total to $61.5 million. 
 
 Related stories will be right here … 
Brecken Branstratoris the senior editor, gemstones at National Jeweler, covering sourcing, pricing and other developments in the colored stone sector.

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