Bonhams Gearing up for Paris Luxury Watches Sale

Bonhams Watches open their 2022 calendar with their first sale in the City of Lights – Montres de Prestige au Grand Palais Ephémère - appearing alongside the collectors cars of the Grandes Marques à Paris Sale on 3 February.

Leading the sale is a rare circa 1985 Audemars-Piguet Royal Oak, D Series Reference: 25554ST.00.0344ST.01, estimate €50,000 – 70,000. This watch features Audemars-Piguet's first application of a thin perpetual calendar to Gerald Genta's legendary Royal Oak design. Of the 279 watches of this reference produced, only 49 were made in stainless steel, including this example, which has a LOW number and would have been among the first to be executed.

One of the touch points of this watch is that, despite its structural complexity, it remains very thin. Based on the extremely thin Jaeger-LeCoultre Cal.920 automatic movement, the perpetual mechanism is added as a layer or module under the 'Opaline' dial.

Other highlights of the luxury timepieces on offer are two very rare and exciting wristwatches by the celebrated independent watchmaker Laurent Ferrier, ex-Patek Philippe technical director and semi-professional racing driver who finished third in the 1979 Le Mans 24 Hours endurance race.

Laurent- Ferrier circa 2010 Galet Classic Tourbillon, Ref: LCF001.02.R5.E09, €60,000 – 80,000

In 'pole position' is a Ferrier circa 2010 Galet Classic Tourbillon, Reference: LCF001.02.R5.E09, estimate €60,000 – 80,000. Fitted with a double balance-spring tourbillon movement, the 18k rose gold manual wind wristwatch has been crafted in the finest traditional manner with a precision rating certified by Besançon Observatory.

Another timepiece from the Laurent Ferrier Galet (or pebble) collection is a circa 2014 Galet Classic, Reference: LCF004.G1.OBN.1, estimate €25,000 – 30,000, featuring a sold silver dial and its signature pebble-like smooth, rounded edges. Only 150 pieces have been produced every year since the company was established in 2009 and so they are rarities in the auction saleroom.

Jonathan Darracott, Bonhams Global Head of Watches, said: "Laurent Ferrier is part of the tradition of watch makers consumed by a passion for watchmaking. Giving up a career as a racing driver he followed in the footsteps of his family into watchmaking and started to produce exceptional hand-finished watches that led him to be awarded the GPHG prize and a place amongst the legends of watchmaking."

circa 1935 Patek Philippe Reference: 96, double-signed 'Hausmann and Co', estimate €60,000 – 80,000

Another incredibly rare timepiece, from one of the most exclusive and world-renowned names of horology, is a circa 1935 Patek Philippe Reference: 96, double-signed 'Hausmann and Co'.

The quintessentially 1930s wristwatch has been owned since new by the same family, purchased by the current vendor's grandfather who gave it to his grandson as a child who, not appreciating the value and rarity of the timepiece, wore it to school. Adding to its allure is the double-signature of the exceptional jewellers 'Hausmann & Co'. It has an estimate of €60,000 – 80,000.

Other highlights from the sale representing the grand names of horology include:

Circa 1960 Mathey-Tissot Type XX, estimate €15,000 – 20,000

Circa 1960 Mathey-Tissot Type XX. A steel manual wind flyback chronograph pilot's watch, estimate €15,000 – 20,000. The Type XX was commissioned from several watchmakers for the French military, with required specification including a black dial, registers situated at 3 and 9 for constant seconds and a minute recording register, flyback for the chronograph while running and a diameter of approximately 38mm. This Matthey-Tissot example is one of the rarest of this military style chronograph.

Collection of a Distinguished European Gentleman
This selection of more than 60 timepeices was carefully put together by the vendor, a well-respected University Professor influenced by design and aesthetics surrounding him in his everyday life. The result is a collection of interesting, unusual and rare pieces, representing names from Cartier to Rolex, many of which pushed the boundaries of watch design.

Highlights include:

Circa 1920 Movado Polyplan Reference: 4009, estimate €12,000 – 18,000

Circa 1920 Movado Polyplan Reference: 4009, estimate €12,000 – 18,000. This is the only production watch with a movement shaped to the extreme curve of the case, making it a very wearable oversize watch. Launched in 1912 it was light years ahead of its competition in design and technical advancement, housing a movement based on three planes enabling the case's highly curved 'banana' shape.

Due to the excessive costs of production, only 1,500 examples were made, with the model offered, an 18k white gold full size maxi case, the rarest combination available.

Circa 1980 Corum Golden Bridge, estimate €5,000 – 7,000

Circa 1980 Corum Golden Bridge, estimate €5,000 – 7,000. Created by Vincent Calabrese, this watch features a predominantly empty, see-through rock crystal case affording an unrestricted view of its intricately detailed gold linear movement.

Circa 1970 Patek Philippe Calatrava Reference: 3445, estimate €20,000 – 30,000. The 3445 was the first automatic watch by Patek Philippe to have a date and was in production until 1981. This example features a highly attractive and gloss black dial complemented by its solid 18K yellow case and is powered by its incomparable Calibre 27-470PM movement.

The sale will be held as a traditional live auction at 10.00 on Thursday 3 February, with bids accepted from clients in the room (respecting social distancing and all local COVID-related guidelines).

The sale will also be available the Bonhams App, which provides registered bidders the opportunity to bid in real time online via while watching the auctioneer and videos of cars on offer. Absentee and telephone bids are also encouraged.

The sale catalogue is now online here:

Pre-sale viewing will take place as follows:

At Bonhams Paris, 4, rue de la Paix 75002 Paris:
Tuesday 25 January 10-6pm Wednesday 26 January 10-6pm Thursday 27 January 10-6pm Friday 28 January 10-6pm; Monday 31 January by Appointment Only.

And at the Grand Palais Ephémère Place Joffre, 75007 Paris:
Wednesday 2 February 10 - 6pm; Thursday 3 February 8 - 10am.

Contact [email protected] for further details.


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