lot 02

De Bethune


This watch was featured at the "Contemporary Independents" auction

Starting bid CHF 25 000
Hammer price CHF 42 000
Total bids 18


CaseRose gold case 750/1000 with pierced lugs & sapphire caseback
StrapBlack Alligator strap with a original rose gold pin buckle
DialSilvered Dial with Roman numerals, power reserve indication at 12 o'clock, blued hands
MovementRhodium-plated automatic movement with 6 days power reserve
Ref.DB25 RS1
Movement No.DB 2024.642
Case No.N° 017

Condition report

Case:Very good, small signs of wear
Strap:Very good, small signs of wear
Dial:Mint condition
Movement:All functions working properly
Amplitude (Dial on top/Lift angle 52):Approx 260°
Accuracy (Dial on top):Approx +10 sec/day


A very rare, charismatic and classy rose gold self-winding wristwatch of the Swiss watch brand De Bethune, founded in 2002 by the Italian vintage watch dealer David Zanetta and French watchmaker Denis Flageollet. Reference launched in 2007. Case in 18k rose gold, diameter 44mm, 12.3mm thick, lugs of a hollowed design, sapphire caseback. Matte silver-plated dial with central zone decorated by ‘lotus’ hand-made guilloché motif and peripheral zone by ‘grain d’orge’ guilloché motif, domed chapter ring with dark-blue pad-printed Roman numerals, avant-garde ‘pomme de Breguet’ blued steel hands. Caliber DB2024, self-winding, double barrel, 6-day power reserve. Functions – indication of time in hours and minutes, power reserve indicator at 12 o’clock. Black leather strap, De Bethune pin buckle in 18k rose gold. Numbered edition. De Bethune reports only 40 pieces made since 2007. 

Lot essay 

The DB25 Ref. DB25RS1 is one of the three references that started the DB25 collection in 2007, one of the most successful De Bethune collections. This reference is now out of production; however, examples that pop up in the secondary and auction markets perform very well. 

We should note that the DB25 Ref. DB25RS1 belongs to the few models in the De Bethune collection that can be described as classical, which sets apart DB25 timepieces from other contemporary and futuristic De Bethune watches, such as the DB28 and Dream Watch collections. This is shown by its very classic round rose gold case, crown at the traditional 3 o’clock position, and a matte silver-plated and guilloché dial marked by Roman numerals. High-end finishes are also characteristic of the case and dial parts, enhancing the perceived value of the watch. At the same time, the DB25 watches show clear signs of De Bethune’s avant-garde style and watchmaking craftsmanship. These include the high-tech caliber DB2024, De Bethune’s version of the ‘pomme de Breguet’ hands in blued steel, and unusual lugs of a hollowed design. This very peculiar, piquant combination gives this reference, like many other models of the De Bethune collection, a special character and charisma – extremely valuable features for a collectible watch. 

The DB25 Ref. DB25RS1 would be an attractive purchase for the collector and De Bethune watchmaking expertise aficionado, with an opportunity to obtain a very rare (just 40 pieces made since 2007), charismatic and classy self-winding wristwatch

The DB2024 caliber, visible through the sapphire caseback, is made entirely in-house, featuring an impressive 6-day power reserve and a rotor with heavy segment in platinum. It was developed in 2007 and embedded with patented and exclusive De Bethune innovations, such as a blued titanium balance wheel with platinum bud-shaped studs, a hairspring with flat terminal curve, and a unique triple shock resistance system with flat steel fixing springs and a blued flexible bridge of framework design. The DB2024 caliber powered watches of the DB25 and DB22 collections, at that moment just put into production. The caliber was produced in two versions – with or without a power reserve indicator. 

The design of the DB2024 caliber is definitely futuristic: in addition to the features already mentioned, attention should be paid to the double-barrel bridge with star pattern in relief, sand-blasted finish of recessed areas and stiffeners with a snail textured finish, and the centrally mounted open-worked rotor made of blued titanium and heavy platinum segment that leaves almost a completely open view of the caliber parts underneath. Also noteworthy are other unique signs of De Bethune’s watchmaking craftsmanship, including the shock-resistant mount of the rotor with 12 jewels on four shock-absorbing petals, and the blued-titanium bridge of the self-winding gear. 

Reasons to bid 

The DB25 Ref. DB25RS1 would be an attractive purchase for the collector and De Bethune watchmaking expertise aficionado, with an opportunity to obtain a very rare (just 40 pieces made since 2007), charismatic and classy self-winding wristwatch from this famous independent watch brand, one of the undoubted leaders in the haute horlogerie watch market. The combination of impeccable technical craftsmanship, an important self-winding caliber, exquisite hand-finished case and movement, and a unique matte silver-plated dial embellished with hand-crafted guilloché ‘lotus’ and ‘grain d’orge’ motifs and a domed chapter ring, certainly adds to the appeal of this lot.