A superlative, highly important and extremely rare gold world-time wristwatch with engine turned dial

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  • Manufacturer: Patek Philippe
    Year: 1953
    Reference No: 2523
    Movement No: 722’702
    Case No: 306’207
    Model Name: Two-crown world time
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 12-400HU, 18 jewels, stamped twice with the Geneva Seal
    Bracelet/Strap: Black Patek Philippe crocodile strap
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K gold Patek Philippe buckle
    Dimensions: 35.5mm diameter
    Signed: case, dial and movement signed by maker; case furthermore signed by retailer Jean Guillermin
    Accessories: With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with guilloché center in 1953 and its subsequent sale on October 10, 1956.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The present piece is one of the most breathtaking specimens of the iconic reference 2523, by far the most appreciated, elegant, collectible and sought-after world-time model ever produced by any manufacturer.
    Beyond the appeal of the reference in itself, this example sports three extremely remarkable features.

    First and foremost, its case is preserved in absolutely unspoiled condition. The design of this reference is characterized by the angular and faceted lugs raised above the bezel. Obviously, such a detail is easily spoiled by even the lightest polishing, and to be able to behold - let alone to own - such a spectacularly preserved piece truly is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

    Secondarily, its dial is fitted with an engine-turned decoration. So far, only two other yellow gold 2523 are known with a similar dial, thus making this variation the rarest of them all for a yellow gold case, together with the blue enamel décor. It is also interesting to note how the guillochage found on ref. 2523 is different than the one found on ref. 2523/1: 2523 presents gilt engine-turning rather than silver, and with a more elaborate design, featuring a satin ring with roman and baton numerals framing the engine-turned center.

    Last, but not least, the present piece was retailed by famed French jeweler Jean Guillermin and it features on the case back, absolutely unspoiled and perfectly recognizable, not only the two French import marks (the “Owl”), but also the stamp of the retailer itself. It has to be underlined how unusual it is to find a two-crown world time – whether ref. 2523, or 2523/1 – signed by the retailer. Only two other examples are known from the market: a 2523 signed by Gobbi, and a 2523/1 signed by Tiffany.

  • Maker Bio

    Patek Philippe

    Swiss • 1839

    Since its founding in 1839, this famous Geneva-based firm has been surprising its clientele with superbly crafted timepieces fitted with watchmaking's most prestigious complications. Traditional and conservative designs are found across Patek Philippe's watches made throughout their history — the utmost in understated elegance.

    Well-known for the Graves Supercomplication — a highly complicated pocket watch that was the world’s most complicated watch for 50 years — this family-owned brand has earned a reputation of excellence around the world. Patek's complicated vintage watches hold the highest number of world records for results achieved at auction compared with any other brand. For collectors, key models include the reference 1518, the world's first serially produced perpetual calendar chronograph, and its successor, the reference 2499. Other famous models include perpetual calendars such as the ref. 1526, ref. 3448 and 3450, chronographs such as the reference 130, 530 and 1463, as well as reference 1436 and 1563 split seconds chronographs. Patek is also well-known for their classically styled, time-only "Calatrava" dress watches, and the "Nautilus," an iconic luxury sports watch first introduced in 1976 as the reference 3700 that is still in production today.

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Σ ✱908

Ref. 2523
A superlative, highly important and extremely rare gold world-time wristwatch with engine turned dial

百達翡麗,重要及極罕有,18K黃金腕錶,配世界時間,“Two-crown world time”,型號2523,1953年製

1953
35.5mm diameter
case, dial and movement signed by maker; case furthermore signed by retailer Jean Guillermin

Estimate
HK$10,000,000 - 20,000,000 
€1,090,000-2,180,000
$1,250,000-2,500,000

sold for HK$22,300,000

Contact Specialist
Ziyong Ho
Specialist
+852 9386 2032
yong.ho@phillips.com

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: FIVE

Hong Kong Auction 28 November 2017