On May 14 and 15 at Hôtel La Réserve, Geneva, Phillips in association with Bacs & Russo will be auctioning some of the world's finest collectors’ watches ever to cross the block. The first part of the sale is dedicated solely to "Epic Stainless Steel Chronographs" of the highest quality and rarity – all produced by the most prestigious watch manufacturers of the last century. Here are our picks from the two-day horological feast:
1.) ROLEX REF. 4113 SPLIT-SECONDS
An extremely rare, oversized and important stainless steel split-seconds racing driver's chronograph wristwatch with silvered matte dial, pink gold raised Arabic and baton hour markers, outer blue telemeter and black tachometer scales, manufactured 1942. For many collectors considered the most important Rolex wristwatch ever made. Estimate up to $1.4 million.
2.) OMEGA SYNCHROBEAT
In 1954, Omega planned to manufacture around 1,000 Synchrobeat watches for the U.S. market featuring a dead-beat (stop-seconds) mechanism. Unfortunately, technical challenges arose and Omega was forced to stop production and recall all unsold watches, which were then destroyed or used as spare parts. This is only one of 17 believed to have survived. Estimate not yet released.
3.) LONGINES A7
An oversized, rare and historically important asymmetrical chrome plated pilot’s chronograph wristwatch with black dial and military markings, made for the US Army, manufactured in 1935. The Type A-7 'Avigation' watches were produced by Longines and Meylan in compliance to the US military’s specifications with massive 51mm cases. Estimated at up to $100,000.
4.) PATEK PHILIPPE REF. 1463 "FRECCERO"
An extremely rare and highly attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with two-tone silvered dial, applied Arabic and baton hour markers, outer tachometer scale and bracelet, retailed by Freccero, manufactured 1955. The only vintage chronograph model by Patek Philippe fitted with a water-resistant case and round chronograph pushers. Estimated at up to $550,000.
5.) ROLEX "PAUL NEWMAN" DAYTONA
An extremely fine, possibly unique stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with tropical non-Oyster "Sotto" – "Oyster below", in Italian – Paul Newman dial. One of the ultimate goals for the Daytona collector. Signed Rolex, Oyster, Cosmograph, ref. 6263, made circa 1970. Estimate not yet released.