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02 May 2018

Phillips Presents Hong Kong Watch Auction: SIX    



Highlighting an Extremely Rare Patek Philippe Reference 2438/1

18K Pink Gold Wristwatch, circa 1959


Auction to take place at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong on 29 May 2018

HONG KONG – 2 May 2018 – Following the announcements of the Daytona Ultimatum sale and Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN, Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo is delighted to announce yet another exciting sale - Hong Kong Watch Auction: SIX.  Comprising over 230 lots, the sale will offer an exceptional selection of timepieces in excellent condition and with notable provenance, all manufactured by the world’s most established watchmakers.  Held on 29 May at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, the sale will provide collectors with the opportunity to acquire modern and vintage wristwatches, as well as a meticulous selection of fine pocket watches and enamel clocks.

Thomas Perazzi, Head of Watches, Phillips, Asia,
said: “Following the success of our sale last November, which achieved the highest sale total for any watch auction held in Asia in 2017, Phillips is delighted to present the sixth installment of Hong Kong Watch Auction this Spring, as we continue to cater to the appetite and collecting needs of the discerning collectors in the region.  This season we are particularly proud that our international team has together mounted a sale with a strong vintage accent – and indeed amongst the highlights of the sale is a highly important and extremely rare Patek Philippe Reference 2438/1 18K pink gold perpetual calendar wristwatch, made circa 1959.  In production from 1952 to 1963, the present example is the waterproof twin of reference 2497.  Coming from an important private Swiss collector, the watch bears remarkable history: it comes with original Certificate and even the original purchase invoice, documenting the fact that it was acquired at the Geneva Salon on 4 April 1970 for CHF 6,490.  The rarity of this reference 2438/1 is represented by its pink gold configuration as compared with the standard yellow gold counterpart.  It is believed that the overall production of pink gold 2438 was extremely limited, probably slightly more than 10 examples.  As one of the auctioneers of the sale, I, together with the global team, look forward to introducing this precious and important timepiece alongside other meticulously selected timepieces to the collectors in Asia and beyond.



One of the most exquisite Rolex timepieces, this extremely rare Rolex ‘Sea-Dweller’ Reference 1665 will also grace the sale this season. Rolex started to develop timepieces for underwater use - resisting up to 2,000 feet underwater - with a helium escape valve in the mid-1960s.  However, some of the very first ‘Sea-Dweller’, most probably developed for the Tektite habitat located at just 15 metres underwater, were produced without the valve.  According to our research, less than ten pieces of such are known overall.  The present example, bearing a double red dial, which was most likely manufactured for a specific scientific endeavour, is astoundingly rare to come by.

Coming from the family of the original owner, the present piece is one of the earliest examples of reference 1518. Only a few known examples have survived through 80 years together with their documents; the present piece, however, is accompanied by almost all of the original documents possible – from the 1945 catalogue and price list to two instruction leaflets and multiple extracts from the archives, making this a truly collectible piece.

Coming from an important Asian collector, the present early example of reference 6263 has all the hallmarks desired by scholars of the Rolex Daytona.  The reference 6263, a premier reference amongst watch aficionados, was produced from 1969 until the late 1980s.  Boasting the highly-sought-after “Paul Newman” style, the present example is in well-preserved condition and its “Panda” configuration will surely entice the fans of Rolex Daytona.


This particular Bvlgari Serpenti has never appeared for sale publicly.  The movement and case were produced by Jaeger-LeCoultre and sold to Bvlgari in 1957, with the Serpenti being produced circa 1970. Its smaller size indicates that it was likely a custom-made piece which is rarely seen at auction, further contributing to its collectability and importance. The immaculate details, sumptuous materials and evocative design make this Serpenti a horological and artistic specimen of the highest order.


From an important Swiss collector, this Patek Philippe whimsical dome clock is an early example of the highly desirable solar powered dome clocks.  The brand introduced them in 1953, and they are still being made today in very limited numbers. The present example features jungle creatures on each panel, and the entire scene is highlighted by purple and red birds and foliage.  The white dial has a gilt chapter ring with baton numerals.  In pristine condition, “The Jungle” will add joie de vivre to any interiors.


In original condition, the present watch is fresh to the market and features a clean classic sigma dial with gold markers, enhanced by the red numbering of the 24-hour, leap year and subsidiary seconds indication.  This is the fifth known example to be offered at auction and is truly a masterpiece, giving the opportunity for all savvy connoisseurs to own part of Patek Philippe’s history.



Offered for the first time at auction in Asia and created for the 175th anniversary of Patek Philippe in a 175-piece limited edition, reference 5275 can be considered one of the technical pinnacles of Patek Philippe production. Inspired by another celebratory timepiece - reference 3969 launched for the 150th anniversary, which features digital hour display - it was vastly improved on the digital hour concept.  Far from being a simple digital hour timepiece, reference 5275 features a number of complications: all the time indications - the seconds, the minutes and the digital hour - proceed by jump intervals, rather than a constant movement.

The present example sets the collectability bar further up than a standard 5004, as it features an extremely special personalised dial.  The overall design is the “alternative” style reserved by Patek Philippe for special request timepieces, characterised by the double railway scales, an outer one for the tachymeter and an inner one for the minute divisions.  The dial and hands are luminous, exuding a remarkable kind of aesthetic.  Only another modern timepiece with nominal dial is known - a white gold 5004 with bracelet sold last year at Phillips Hong Kong.

Richard Mille is one of the most visionary contemporary watch brands, and the present piece aptly represents such revolutionary spirit.  The base plate of the movement is made of carbon nanofiber, a recently developed material with the well-appreciated features of high chemical and physical stability. Number 2 of an extremely restricted limited edition of 5, this remarkable timepiece’s absolutely untouched condition, the presence of the original Warranty and the winding display case further amplify its appeal and collectability.


Phillips Hong Kong Spring Sale 2018

20th Century & Contemporary Art and Design Evening Sale, 27 May 2018, 6pm HKT

Jewels and Jadeite, 28 May 2018, 2:30pm HKT

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: Six, 29 May 2018, 1pm & 4:30pm HKT

Location: Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, 5 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong


Asia Preview Tour


Phillips Korea Office, #12 SOUNDS, 35 Daesagwan-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Korea (04401)

26 – 28 April 2018, 11am – 6pm


Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li, 480 West Jianguo Road, Xuhui District, Shanghai 200031, China

4 – 5 May 2018, 10am – 6pm


Four Seasons Hotel Singapore, 190 Orchard Boulevard, 248646, Singapore

5 – 6 May, 2018, 11am –  6pm


14/F Kelti International Tower, 105 Songren Road, Xinyi District, Taipei, Taiwan

19 May 2018, 11am – 5pm

20 May 2018, 11am – 6pm

Hong Kong

Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, 1/F & 2/F, 5 Connaught Road Central, Hong Kong

24 – 25 & 27 May 2018, 10am – 6pm HKT

26 May 2018, 10am – 7pm HKT

28 May 2018, 10am – 6pm HKT (The Hong Kong Watch Auction: Six only)



The team of specialists at Phillips Watches is dedicated to an uncompromised approach to quality, transparency, and client service, achieving a sale total of $112 million in 2017 – its second consecutive year as the worldwide market leader in watch auctions.

A selection of our recent record-breaking prices:

1.       Paul Newman’s Rolex “Paul Newman” Daytona reference 6239 (CHF 17,709,894/US$17,752,500) – New York Auction: Winning Icons – 26 October 2017 – ­­­Highest result ever achieved for any wristwatch at auction.

2.      Patek Philippe reference 1518 in stainless steel (CHF 11,020,000 /US$11,112,020) – Geneva Watch Auction: FOUR – 12 November 2016 – Highest result ever achieved for a Patek Philippe wristwatch at auction.

3.      Patek Philippe reference 2523 (HK$22,300,000 /US$2,856,630) – Hong Kong Watch Auction: FIVE – 28 November 2017 – Highest result ever achieved for any wristwatch sold at auction in Asia


Phillips is a leading global platform for buying and selling 20th and 21st century art and design. With dedicated expertise in the areas of 20th Century and Contemporary Art, Design, Photographs, Editions, Watches, and Jewelry, Phillips offers professional services and advice on all aspects of collecting. Auctions and exhibitions are held at salerooms in New York, London, Geneva, and Hong Kong, while clients are further served through representative offices based throughout Europe, the United States and Asia. Phillips also offers an online auction platform accessible anywhere in the world.  In addition to providing selling and buying opportunities through auction, Phillips brokers private sales and offers assistance with appraisals, valuations, and other financial services.

Visit for further information.


*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium; prices achieved include the hammer price plus buyer’s premium.



HONG KONG - Rhonda Yung, PR Director, Asia             +852 2318 2043

GENEVA - Asta Ponzo, PR Consultant                                          +41 799618566


PHILLIPS HONG KONG -  14/F St. George’s Building,  2 Ice House Street Central Hong Kong

PHILLIPS NEW YORK - 450 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10022

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