Patek Philippe - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XV Hong Kong Monday, November 28, 2022 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Patek Philippe
    Year: 1953
    Reference No: 2499
    Movement No: 868’540
    Case No: 691’607
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 13''', 23 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Patek Philippe deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 37.5mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and clasp signed
    Accessories: Delivered with a Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming the date of manufacture of the present timepiece in 1953 and its subsequent date of sale on October 1st, 1956.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Praised by many and yet rarely seen by most, the Patek Philippe ref. 2499 is with no doubt an absolute treasure in the rich heritage of the firm. To many collectors, it is perhaps one of the most impressive wristwatches ever made by any manufacturer. Regarded as the most prestigious manufacturer of timepiece of the utmost quality, elegance and importance, Patek Philippe has garnered a loyal following of collectors through their technical mastery and great horological innovations. However, it was one of the firm’s most prized innovations that have secured their position as an all-time great, the perpetual calendar chronograph.

    Being the first ever manufacture to release the world’s first perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch in 1941 via the ref. 1518, it paved a new path of what would come next. Taking over the important reign in 1951, Patek Philippe released the coveted ref. 2499, which was still the only wristwatch with such complication available in the market at the time. Utilizing the same movement cal. 13-130 (Valjoux VZ 23 base) as the ref. 1518, the ref. 2499 boasted a completely new and refreshed case design. While the ref. 1518 features a rather traditional Calatrava inspired case with thin and elegant elongated lugs reminiscent of the stylistic period of the 1940s, collectors believe that the ref. 2499 is the perfect interpretation of a timeless appeal.

    With excellent proportions and perfect symmetry, the ref. 2499 features an elegant bassine-style case with distinctive fluted lugs. Early examples of the reference featured a tachymeter scale, applied gold Arabic numerals and square chronographic pushers that are similar to the ref. 1518. Discontinued in 1985 with a production spanning 34 years, only 349 examples of the ref. 2499 left the manufacturer across all metals and series resulting in an average of 9 pieces made annually.

    The Patek Philippe ref. 2499 across four series:

    - First series (1951 – 1960): Square chronograph pushers, applied Arabic numerals and tachometer scale - of which the present lot is an example.

    - Second series (1955 – 1964): Round chronograph buttons, either applied baton or applied Arabic numerals and tachometer scale.

    - Third series (1960 – 1978): Round chronograph buttons, applied baton numerals and outer seconds divisions.

    - Fourth series (1978 – 1985): Round chronograph buttons, applied baton numerals, outer seconds divisions and sapphire crystal.

    Extremely scarce, it is estimated that only 48 pieces throughout the entire production were examples from the first series across all case metals. Bearing traits that are unique to the specific series transitioning over from the ref. 1518, the first series can also be subdivided into two separate generations with cases made by two different case makers, Vichet (Key no. 9) and Wenger (Key no. 1).

    Vichet Case Profile: Approx. 1951 – 1953. Identifiable via Key no. 9 inside the caseback. 36.2mm diameter. Flat caseback and elongated lugs. 9 examples known in the market in 18K yellow gold.

    Wenger Case Profile: Approx. 1953 – 1960. Identifiable via Key no. 1 inside the caseback. 37.5mm diameter. Domed caseback with slightly shorter lugs. 24 examples (including the present example) known in the market in 18K yellow gold.

    With extensive research and findings of the ref. 2499 by dedicated scholars’ overs the years, it is to our knowledge that a total of two dial variations for the first series were produced.

    Dial A: Similar to the dials featured in ref. 1518. Applied gold Arabic numerals with tachometer scale in Kilometers or Miles. With “Chemin de Fer”.

    Dial B: Applied gold Arabic numerals with tachometer scale in Kilometers or Miles. Without “Chemin de Fer”. (The present example)

    While dials from the first series ref. 2499 in respect to “Dial A” and “Dial B” are very similar to dials seen in the ref. 1518, there are specific traits that separate them apart.

    - The very first examples of the ref. 2499 features a “Chemin de Fer” or “Railway” date scale like the ref. 1518. Usually featured on cases made by Vichet.

    - Examples of ref. 2499 with “Dial A” should have a smaller gap between the outer track and the “Chemin de Fer” compared to dials featured on the ref. 1518.

    - Examples with cases made by Wenger are mostly seen with “Dial B”.


    Most recent Patek Philippe ref. 2499 from the first series offered at PHILLIPS:

    Hong Kong Watch Auction: XII 5-6 June 2021
    Patek Philippe ref. 2499 in yellow gold with Italian Calendar with case no: 691'697, movement no: 868'542, manufactured in 1953, date of sale on 10th December 1956.

    Geneva Watch Auction: XIV 5 & 7 November 2021
    Patek Philippe ref. 2499 in yellow gold retailed by Serpico y Laino with case no: 687'756, movement no: 868'340, manufactured in 1952, date of sale on 2nd March 1956.

    Hong Kong Watch Auction: XV 28 & 29 November 2022 (the present example)
    Patek Philippe ref. 2499 in yellow gold with case no: 691'607, movement no: 868'540, manufactured in 1953, date of sale on 1st October 1956.

    Interestingly, the most recent examples of the ref. 2499 from the first series all in yellow gold that were offered at PHILLIPS all bear very close case and movement numbers. The example sold at Hong Kong Watch Auction: XII is only two numbers apart from the present example being offered (the present lot being the earlier example). All three examples were all sold in the same year in 1956.

    The present example Patek Philippe ref. 2499 from the first series in yellow gold manufactured in 1953 housed in a Wenger-made 37.5mm diameter case is truly a rare and momentous occasion for vintage connoisseurs and collectors of the highest caliber to have the chance to acquire such an example. Hidden and tucked away in private hands for the past 25 years since its was last seen in public at an auction in 1997, the watch has been preserved in the same condition as it was last offered.

    Delivered with an Extract from the Archives issued by Patek Philippe confirming the date of manufacture of the present timepiece in 1953 and its subsequent date of sale on 1st October 1956, the present specimen boasts an extremely well-preserved case with lugs that are full and with a crisp step that flows all the way to the end of each lug, it further displays two deep and clean hallmarks beneath the top left and bottom right lug. To solidify the originality of the present example, the last three numbers of the case number “607” is engraved on the inner surface of the top left lug and inside the bezel.

    Such a timepiece does not appear very often in public. When it does, it gathers the community to celebrate and reflect the importance and significance of how it all started and to admire one of the most impressive wristwatches manufactured by Patek Philippe. PHILLIPS is extremely delighted to offer this rare opportunity for collectors to have the chance to acquire and own this magnificent ref. 2499 in yellow gold from the first series.

  • 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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PLEASE NOTE, THIS LOT IS A PREMIUM LOT. TO BID ON THE LOT YOU MUST COMPLETE AND SATISFY OUR PREMIUM LOT PRE-REGISTRATION PROCEDURE NO LATER THAN 24 HOURS BEFORE THE START OF THE AUCTION SESSION IN WHICH IT IS OFFERED. PLEASE ALSO NOTE THAT ALL BIDDERS MUST PLACE BIDS IN PERSON, VIA ABSENTEE BID, OR BY TELEPHONE. PLEASE CONTACT THE DEPARTMENT FOR DETAILS.

858

Ref. 2499
An extremely fine, highly important and well-preserved yellow gold perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch with moon phases

1953
37.5mm diameter
Case, dial, movement and clasp signed

Estimate
HK$7,800,000 - 15,600,000 
€1,020,000-2,040,000
$1,000,000-2,000,000

Sold for HK$10,656,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XV

28 - 29 November 2022 (Online Registration ends 27 Nov, 2pm HKT)