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Patek Philippe and Roger Smith watches smash world records at auction

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If 2020 was about auctioneers selling more watches at lower prices through online auctions, 2021 is shaping up to be a year of record-breaking prices for the most prestigious pieces.

The Geneva Watch Auction: XIII, held by Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo last week, was the most successful sale it has ever held, with a Patek Philippe Reference 2523 world timer — one of only three said to have been made with an Eurasia cloisonné enamel dial — selling for $7,819,051.

That was double its pre-sale estimate and secured two world records, first as the highest price ever paid for a Patek Philippe wristwatch with enamel cloisonné dial and a second record for any yellow gold wristwatch ever sold at auction.

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Watches from independent makers showed their continuing strength.

A Roger Smith Series 1 “Onely Theo Fennell” set a new price record for any Roger Smith watch sold at auction when the hammer dropped at $601,073. That the highest auction price ever achieved for a wristwatch by a British watchmaker.

Grand Seiko also showed it is rising in stature among collectors. A 2006 Grand Seiko Ref. SBGD001 platinum wristwatch with spring drive sold for $97,867, more than three times its pre-sale low estimate and 30% higher than its original retail price.

More than 2,500 people participated in or watched the auction, the overwhelming majority online from 83 countries.

Star watches at Geneva Watch Auction: XIII

PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 2523. A previously unknown and extremely important, rare and attractive yellow gold worldtime wristwatch with two crowns and “Eurasia” cloisonné enamel dial. Sold for $7,819,051, a world record for a Patek Philippe cloisonné enamel dial wristwatch and a world record for a yellow gold wristwatch sold at auction.
Patek Philippe Ref. 570. A highly rare and incredibly well-preserved stainless steel wristwatch with two-tone dial and Breguet numerals from around 1942 sold for $3,657,692
PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 2499 Second series. A superlatively fine, rare and important pink gold perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch with moonphases and German calendar sold for $2,718,030.
PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 2499 First series. An extremely fine, rare and important yellow gold perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch with moonphases and Italian calendar sold for $2,181,080.
RICHARD MILLE, Ref. RM022. An attractive and very rare limited edition red quartz TPT tonneau-shaped dual-time wristwatch with tourbillon, function selector, power reserve, torque indication, original warranty and presentation box. Sold for $838,706.
PATEK PHILIPPE, Ref. 5711 P. An incredibly rare and attractive platinum wristwatch with date, bracelet, Certificate of Origin and Box. World record for any Patek Philippe Reference 5711. Sold for $629,030.
ROGER SMITH, Series 1 “Onely Theo Fennell”. An incredibly rare and attractive rectangular white gold wristwatch with retrograde date World record for any Roger Smith at auction and world record for any wristwatch made by a British watchmaker. Sold for $601,073.
A unique and attractive platinum wristwatch with tourbillon, Remontoire d’Égalité, warranty and presentation box. World record $503,224 for any Harry Winston Opus series wristwatch.
2006 Grand Seiko Ref. SBGD001
An impressive and heavy platinum wristwatch with spring drive, 8 day power reserve. Sold for $97,867.

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