Patek Watches Tops Bids at Antiquorum Auction

Antiquorum closed its 2008 season with an auction of “Important Collectors’ Wristwatches, Pocket Watches,” at its U.S. headquarters that brought in $7.28 million.

There were more than 388 on-line bidders in addition to the telephone, and commission collectors who bid on the 542 lots in the sale. They bought modern and vintage watches at 105 percent of their estimate resulting in 75 percent of all lots sold, the auction house said. Active bidding was seen from Japan in particular along with countries such as Taiwan, Germany, and Finland.

The highlight of the sale was a Patek Philippe Ref. 5016 in platinum (pictured), lot 538, which fetched the $660,000.

Excellent prices were achieved for the Patek Philippe Ref. 5004R with a black dial, a spilt-seconds chronograph, lot 535 ($360,000) as well as the Patek Philippe Ref. 5013, lot 374, ($468,000).

In addition, the Patek Philippe Ref. 3970 continues to be sought after by collectors; the white gold Ref. 3970, lot 530, achieved $117,600 while the platinum 3970, with black baton dial, lot 537, sold for $ 132,000. Lastly, the Patek Philippe Ref. T150 (retailed by Tiffany), lot 148, realized a noteworthy $ 38,400.

“Our December sale was clear confirmation that collectors are continuing to enthusiastically buy high-end timepieces,” said Julien Schaerer, Auctioneer & Watch Director, Antiquorum USA. “Quality brands such as Patek Philippe are very much in demand, demonstrating the watch market has maintained its strength in spite of the recent economic downturn”

Panerai also did well with the “White Gold Seconds Counter,” lot 293, selling for $26,400 as well as the “White Gold Zerograph,” lot 294, which fetched $33,600.

Rolex achieved extraordinary results with the Double Red Sea-Dweller , lot 275, which sold for $38,400 as well as the PVD coated Rolex Ref. 16600”Pro-Hunter” Sea- Dweller 4000, lot 473, which attained a significant sum of $30,000. Also, the Rolex Ref. 6262, a stainless steel “Paul Newman” Daytona, lot 507, sold for an exceptional price of $76,800. Collectors will also be interested to note that a Rolex Bakelite bezel, lot 452, obtained $16,200 at the December sale.

In addition, baseball great Joe DiMaggio’s Wittnauer Electro-Chron (lot 500); fetched $ 13,800.

“Today’s exceptional results are indicative of the sustained strength of the watch market, proving collectors worldwide are turning to watches for secure investments as other markets drastically fluctuate,” said Evan Zimmermann, Antiquorum president and chief executive officer.