‘Only Watch 07’ Auction Raises $3.8 Million

The “Only Watch 07” charity auction of 35 unique timepieces—all first-in-series, prototypes and one-of-a-kinds—on Sept. 20 in Monaco raised more than $3.8 million (2.75 million euros) for medical research on Duchene Muscular Dystrophy. It’s the largest sum ever achieved by a charity event in Monaco.

The timepiece with the highest bid was Patek Philippe’s automatic “Nautilus Titanium,” 525,000 euros ($738,675) with two-color dial, date and moon phase display, and water-resistance to 200 feet.

More than 300 people attended the auction, including personalities such as designer Philippe Starck and Formula One racecar driver Felipe Massa. Fierce bidding in the room competed with hundreds of bidders from around the world by Internet and telephone.

The auction, the second since 2005, was organized and conducted by Antiquorum, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, one of the world’s leading fine watch auctioneers.

The auction was held during the 2007 Monaco Yacht Show, with Prince Albert II of Monaco, who sponsored and supported the event, in attendance.

The money raised will “allow the Association Monégasque contre les Myopathies to continue to support ongoing research programs and to encourage new ones. Thanks to Only Watch, each new day brings us closer to finding a therapeutic treatment to relieve the suffering of children who have Duchene Muscular Dystrophy,” said Luc Pettavino, president of the Monaco Yacht Show and founder of the Monegasque Association against Muscular Dystrophy.

Other watches among the 35 which drew high bids included DeWitt and Jean-Michel Wilmotte’s “Incognito 2008,” 400,000 euros (about $562,800), a one-minute flying tourbillion regulator, to be unveiled in January 2008; Richard Mille and Philippe Starck’s “Piéce Unique,” 320,000 euros (about $450,240), a  skeletonized titanium self-winding gentleman’s watch with fly-back chronograph, annual calendar, date, and month; Franck Muller’s “Totally Crazy Monaco, 180,000 euros (about $253,260), an 18k white gold automatic watch with random jumping hours, date, and the Monegasque coat of arms on the dial; and Vacheron Constantin’s“Malte Tourbillon Platinum,” 130,000 euros ($182,910), a rare gentleman’s platinum tourbillon regulator, with a carriage bridge in platinum (a first for Vacheron Constantin) in a tonneau-shaped watch. The case, dial, strap stitching and buckle are in platinum.

Only Watch is becoming a recurring event in the worlds of charity and haute horlogerie and for watch collectors worldwide. The third edition of Only Watch will be held in September 2009.