Until the advent of Vacheron Constantin Reference 57260 in 2015, Patek Philippe’s Caliber 89 held the record for being the most complicated timepiece in existence; it remains Patek Philippe’s most complicated timepiece. And now Sotheby’s is auctioning it in May 2017.
In the 1980s you may have read perhaps a few entertaining books by Jackie Collins, who passed away on September 19, 2015 at the age of 77. She was a very wealthy woman after 47 years of publishing bestselling romance novels, and now Bonhams is set to auction her estate of 1,000 lots for an estimated total of $3 million on May 16 and 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, and there are a few interesting watches included. In fact, I’d say surprising watches.
The first weekend of November 2016 was a big one for me: in addition to attending the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève, I collected not one, not two, but three spectacular watches. The watch I left home certain to bring back was one that I had been waiting patiently for since January 2016: the split-seconds chronograph Reference 5370P from Patek Philippe. Here’s why I bought it.
Anyone who visits online watch forums with any frequency very likely comes across at least a few heated discussions of “finishing,” a topic that seems to fascinate, and divide, enthusiasts. What is it and why are opinions divided?
This is the second year in a row that I’ve had the opportunity to attend the November watch auctions in Geneva. On last year’s trip, a good friend and I had the pleasure of participating in several events organized by Patek Philippe as well as the biennial OnlyWatch auction. This year, we returned for the previews and salesroom action at major houses including Phillips, Christie’s, and Sotheby’s.
On October 3, 2016, Patek Philippe launched two hotly anticipated limited-edition watches in commemoration of the fortieth anniversary of its Nautilus line. Reaction from the watch community was immediate – and scathing. Yet barely a few weeks later, opinions were much more positive. What happened and what changed?
Over the past few weeks, I’ve had the pleasure to write here about two truly splendid minute repeaters, both property of a good friend: Patek Philippe Reference 5074P and Reference 5078P. They both look great, but I’m guessing that if you’ve been following this series you’re most interested in how they sound. Well, here’s your chance. Welcome to the great Patek Philippe chime-off!
What sells watches? This is the 20 billion Swiss franc question in today’s challenging economic climate.For at least part of the answer to what sells watches (and how to buy them in down markets), we can learn a lot from two of the steadiest performers in the watch industry.
Recently, a good friend and avid collector gave me the mouth-watering opportunity to photograph two splendid Patek Philippe minute repeaters: the 5074P and 5078P. If you’re one of those people who believe in wearing a watch with your tuxedo, I don’t think you’d ever go wrong in pulling the 5078P out of the safe to wear. What else is interesting about it?
Here begins a very special three-part series looking at, and listening to, two of Patek Philippe’s splendid minute repeaters: References 5074P and 5078P. If there’s any curiosity about which of the two I prefer, I’ll get that question out of the way right now: I consider the 5074P to be one of the finest contemporary wristwatches; it is a piece that awes me every time I handle one.