Richard Mille RM27-04, 10th Anniversary Rafael Nadal
The RM27-04 was made in a collection of 50 timepieces to commemorate 10 years of the watchmaker’s partnership with one of tennis’ all time greatest, none other than, Rafael Nadal. The timepiece is amazingly light The watch is almost unbelievably light, with a movement weighing just 3.4 grams, and the estimate is $871,000-1,740,000. If you happen to pay the high estimate, that works out to a cool $511,764 and seventy cents per gram.
Philippe Dufour, Grande et Petite Sonnerie No. 1
f you’re of the same turn of mind as I am about high complications, this is about as good as it gets. Philippe Dufour made only four of these most elevated of chiming watches with enamel dials, and what we have here is nothing less than movement No. 1, in a yellow gold case (the other three were in pink gold, white gold, and platinum). In August, A Collected Man listed one made for the Sultan Of Brunei for $7.63 million, and that watch has since sold, so the current estimate from Phillips – $1,090,000-2,180,000 – seems completely in the ballpark if not actually low.
Cartier Tank à Guichets Reference 2817 Limited Edition, 2006
Collecting vintage Cartier has always been a game that rewards serious scholarship and diligence because they’re generally pretty rare, overall, particularly anything from the 1960s and earlier. But this watch, from 2006, is by date of manufacture at least, a pretty modern Tank à Guichets. It’s one of my favorite Tank models and one I would welcome back into the regular catalogue with open arms; the estimate on this one is a fairly gentle $16,000-27,000, which is still as they say, real money, although nothing like the insane results vintage Cartier now commands.
Patek Philippe Ref. 3939, Minute Repeater With Tourbillon
The Dufour Grande et Petite Sonnerie up top was the high water mark for striking complications, but this Patek ref. 3939, to paraphrase Aragorn to the Ring-Bearers at the end of the trilogy, need bow to no one. There are precious few watches that I really have fallen hard for and stayed consistently in love with over the years (or I should say decades) and this is one of them. It’s the quintessential Patek in my book – 33mm, and it utterly disdains any sort of ostentation or obvious sign of its aristocratic character, but inside is one of the most beautiful repeating tourbillon movements ever made.
Lange 1 In Honey Gold, Limited Edition Of 20 From 2016
At this auction there are a lot of big guns going for big bucks – like, if you don’t own a yacht you’re not in the game big bucks – but there are also some watches that are just lovely watches, whose beauty you can actually see because you’re not blinded by the dollar signs involved. This is one of them. It’s a 2016 Lange 1 in honey gold, which has a lovely pale luminous quality to it that always reminds me of sunlight coming through low clouds at sunrise, and of course, it’s also one of the great classic designs of modern watchmaking, and of the mechanical renaissance. The estimate is $21,600-43,200, which is in the ballpark for what you’ll pay for a modern Lange 1 in yellow gold ($39,900 at the time of writing). Get some honey gold doppelfederhaus on your wrist today.
A Vacheron Constantin Reference 4737 “Cioccolatone” In Platinum
This is another very unusual and as Phillips quite fairly notes, previously unknown ref. 4737 “Cioccolatone” Vacheron, whose name comes from the fancied resemblance of the case to a chocolate candy. The very stylish case design has made it a collector favorite and certainly you couldn’t ask for a more soigné watch to take out on the town, but the unusual feature of this one is that it’s the only known platinum 4737 – maybe we should call it the White Chocolate? That would maybe be unfair to the four known in white gold (out of 335 known) but maybe we can stretch the point, given the possibly unique nature of this particular piece of wrist candy. Estimate is $216,000-433,000.