An extremely attractive, impressive and rare dual-time stainless-steel wristwatch of the famous Swiss watch brand Audemars Piguet, founded in 1875. Estimated production date: circa 1996. Case in stainless steel, diameter 36mm, thickness 10mm, vivid blue, so-called ‘Electric Blue’ dial with ‘Grande Tapisserie’ pattern, solid stainless steel caseback with engraved Royal Oak logo, D-series case number and model serial number. Self-winding caliber 2229/2845 with an inertial segment in 21k yellow gold, thin, with a power reserve of up to 38 hours. Functions – indication of time in hours and minutes, second time zone (GMT) with hour and minute hands at 6 o’clock, date indicator at 2 o’clock, and power reserve indicator at 9 o’clock. Audemars Piguet stainless steel bracelet, Audemars Piguet second-generation double folding clasp.

Lot essay

In 1989–1990, Audemars Piguet created their first Dual Time wristwatch – Ref. 25685 – with a classical round design in 18k yellow gold, displaying the time in a second time zone driven by the same self-winding calibre 2229/2845. It was produced on the basis of the self-winding caliber 2229/2845, which had been developed by the brand based on an ebauche caliber 928 supplied by Jaeger-LeCoultre, long-term partner and supplier of Audemars Piguet. Reference 25730 is the first Royal Oak Dual Time model embedded with this caliber and the additional functions of a second time zone indication in hours and minutes, power reserve, and date on a sub-dial. During its production span, Ref. 25730 was available in different variations and was mostly produced in stainless steel as Ref. 25730ST. Some examples, however, were produced in stainless steel and yellow gold (Ref. 25730SA), stainless steel and tantalum (Ref. 25730TT), platinum (Ref. 25730PT), and in 18k yellow gold (Ref. 25730BA). Several dial colour options were also offered, while the dial design changed during this period – according to our knowledge, there were at least four generations of Ref. 25730 dials.

The present lot is a very rare example of the first Royal Oak Dual Time reference of the early production period, featuring a charismatic ‘Electric Blue’ dial of the first-generation type.

A small number of reference 25730ST watches featured a deep blue dial, unusual for the Royal Oak collection, and was nicknamed ‘Electric Blue’ – a very noticeable and attractive piece, which along with the similar shade of ‘Yves Klein’ dials aroused keen interest among collectors and connoisseurs of the Royal Oak watch heritage. The present lot features the first-generation ‘Electric blue’ dial, with its characteristic original small ‘Grande Tapisserie’ pattern, applied “AP” index at 12 o’clock, the modern version of the logo printed over the ‘Grande Tapisserie’ pattern just below the “AP” index, classic Royal Oak baton indexes, and a power reserve scale with Arabic numerals up to 48. The other features of the present example are a stainless steel ‘pre-AP’ double-folding clasp, and, characteristic of early Royal Oak Dual Time production, a so-called ‘flat’ crown, without an engraved brand logo.

Reasons to bid

The Royal Oak Dual Time Ref. 25730ST.OO.0789ST.01 ‘Electric Blue’ would be an excellent purchase for the collector who desires an extremely attractive, impressive and rare dual-time wristwatch from a world-renowned traditional watch brand, one of the undisputed leaders in the haute horlogerie watch market. The present lot is a very rare example of the first Royal Oak Dual Time reference of the early production period, featuring a charismatic ‘Electric Blue’ dial of the first-generation type. Therefore, the present lot seems to be a lucky find for the discerning collector.