The thematic offering of pink gold watches of exceptional quality was highlighted by the two extremely rare timepieces by F.P. Journe: Octa Calendrier Special Edition Sincere and Chronometre à Résonance Special Edition Sincere, selling for CHF 280,000 and CHF 360,000 respectively, well above their estimate.
Made in the mid-2000s for the Singaporean retailer, the F.P. Journe Octa Calendrier annual calendar features a spectacular black mother-of-pearl dial that beautifully catches the light and changes color at different viewing angles. The annual calendar function is complemented with a retrograde date indicator, as well as the day and month indication in two small windows, which needs to be set only once a year in February. Exceedingly rare, this watch is one of only ten created by François-Paul Journe for the “Sincere” retailer.
Another 10-piece limited edition Chronometre à Résonance Special Edition Sincere features the same unique mother-of-pearl dial and a dual time zone layout. The Chronomètre à Résonance is renowned as the one and only wristwatch based upon the principle of natural resonance without any means of mechanical transmission. Two balance wheels integrated into the movement begin to beat naturally in close proximity thanks to the resonance phenomenon, which strengthens their chronometric performance. This in turn makes this timepiece probably the most accurate two-timezone watch ever created.
Patek Philippe also broke the four-figure mark as the Nautilus Chronograph Date Ref. 5980R went for CHF 150,000, proving that Nautilus is still the King of the high-end sports watches. And as a matter of fact, the rose gold case of this version works beautifully with the chocolate brown strap and the brown gradient dial.
The Patek Philippe Annual Calendar Chronograph Tiffany Ref. 5905R followed with CHF 90,000. Complications are great, but a combination of them is even better! Effortlessly merging the annual calendar complication with Mono-Compax chronograph function, the 5905R dazzles with its sporty case designed in unexpectedly large size of 42 mm x 14.3 mm. No wonder that it quickly gained its own share of admirers among the bidders.
Three Vacheron Constantin models also made it to the top ten, with one of them achieving world auction record[i]. We are referring to the spectacularly preserved Vacheron Constantin Perpetual Calendar Chronograph ref. 49005 which sold for CHF 52,000 against a pre-sale estimate of CHF 15,000-20,000. This extremely rare and important perpetual calendar chronograph released in the 1990s came in a very unusual variation with a black engine-turned dial beautifully complemented by the 38mm pink gold case.
And now let’s get to the less classic and more avant-garde piece created in 2005 by Harry Winston in collaboration with Felix Baumgartner – famous co-founder of Urwerk. The Opus V model was clearly inspired by the Urwerk’s signature satellite time display. The ingenious satellite hour indicating system with lume Arabic numerals on three revolving cubes is complemented with a retrograde minute hand, a day-night indicator and a 122-hour power reserve display, all packed in a hefty 48mm case featuring a movable rose gold hood protecting the crown. The movement base plate made of the rare ARCAP P40 alloy adds another “Urwerky” touch to this timepiece.
It’s worth noting that independent watchmakers achieved remarkable results with De Bethune models which were performing extremely well, in particular, a time-only model DB25 selling for CHF 44,000 and another DB25 model with an intense electric blue dial made of mirror-polished titanium selling for CHF 48,000.
DB25 timepieces may appear relatively simple on the dial-side, but when you turn them over they reveal a universe of detail and design. Both amazingly beautiful and technically interesting pieces, they feature in-house De Bethune automatic caliber DB2024 with two mainspring barrels providing a 6-day power reserve, a patented titanium balance wheel with solid platinum weights and a patented balance spring with a flat terminal curve.
We believe that for the participating watchmakers it’s essential to see that their creations are recognized and their efforts are rewarded. Whereas for the lucky buyers it’s important to acquire a timepiece that is not only unique but also makes them a part of history. We at Ineichen are glad to have contributed to this positive trend with our latest La Vie En Rose sale.
[i] Vacheron Constantin Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
New record: 64480 CHF
Previous auction sale: 16400 CHF Phillips (Vacheron Constantin - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: EIGHT Hong Kong Monday, May 27, 2019 | Phillips)
Highest market price for reference: 36720 EUR in 2012 (https://www.collectorsquare.com/de/uhren/vacheron-constantin/patrimony-perpetual-calendar/vacheron-constantin-49005/lpi)