Patek Philippe - The Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN Geneva Saturday, May 12, 2018 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Patek Philippe
    Year: 1978
    Reference No: 3700/1
    Movement No: 1'306'135
    Case No: 537'036
    Model Name: Nautilus "Jumbo"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 28-255C C 36 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Patek Philippe bracelet, max length 185mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Patek Philippe deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 42mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Patek Philippe cork fitted presentation box and Extract from the Archives confirming manufacture in 1978 and subsequent sale on April 16, 1978.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The result of a fruitful collaboration between Patek Philippe and designer extraordinaire Gerald Genta, the Nautilus' unique appearance was inspired by the robust proportions of maritime portholes and named for Captain Nemo's submarine the Nautilus in Jules Verne's Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Much as the fictional nautical vessel was described by the novel's protagonist as "a masterpiece containing masterpieces," so does the Nautilus wristwatch possess a numerous variety of artistic cues. The reference 3700/1 embodies every aspect of Patek Philippe's avant-garde design philosophy of the 1970s, from the bold yet elegant curves, to the contrasting finish of the case, and even the delicate grooves of the dial culminating in a sublimely robust and elegant wristwatch. Advertisements from the era trumpeted the Nautilus' status as one of the most expensive steel wristwatches, and proclaimed "Like the great swords of another age, Nautilus took shape between the skilled hands of master craftsmen." Evidence suggests that of all Genta's iconic designs, the Nautilus was his favorite and he perhaps regarded it as his most timeless.

    The present lot is accompanied by its original, highly coveted cork presentation box. Rarer still is the Gübelin retailer signature on the dial above six o'clock, as research indicates that the present lot is only the seventh reference 3700/1 to appear on the market to bear the name of the prestigious retailer. Owing to a thinner caliber, the 3700/1A retains a slimmer profile than its 21st century descendent, the 5711/1A, introduced on the 40th anniversary of the 3700 in 2006. The 'Jumbo' moniker refers to the 42mm case with wide flat bezel, integrated steel link bracelet, and ultra-thin automatic movement, possessing a rather masculine aesthetic compared to the smaller dressy gold mechanical watches of the time. While it was initially not well received - if the lag between the present lot's production in 1978 and sale in 1980 is any indication - its popularity quickly grew, and has been a mainstay of Patek Philippe's collection until the present day.

  • Artist Biography

    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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Ref. 3700/1
An attractive, rare and large stainless steel wristwatch with date, bracelet and original cork presentation box retailed by Gübelin

42mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

CHF50,000 - 100,000 

Sold for CHF101,250

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Sale
+41 22 317 81 81

The Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN

Geneva Auction 12-13 May 2018