The annual Christie's Dubai Important Watches Auction will be held this year on March 23 at the Jumeirah Emirates Tower Hotel. And judging by the vintage timepieces up for grabs this time, a new auction record for the Middle East is on the cards.
Last year, the auction generated its biggest ever result with a total of $5.4 million. A rare Patek Philippe Ref. 2499/100 became the most expensive wristwatch sold an any auction in the region when it was hammered for $499,500 (AED1.83 million) including buyer's premium on the night of March 19, 2018.
According to Remy Julia, head of Christie's Watch Department for the Middle East, India and Africa, this year is set to be the biggest watch auction Christie's will host in the region what with more than 200 lots in the fray.
The highlight of the auction, no doubt, is a rare yellow gold Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 that once belonged to King Farouk, the penultimate monarch of Egypt and Sudan. Ref. 1518 is the first perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch produced in series by any watch company and is a much sought-after timepiece in the vintage market. This watch was manufactured in 1944 and has a pre-sale estimate of $400,000-$500,000 (Dh1.5 million – Dh.9 million).
Also up for sale is a rare stainless steel Rolex GMT-Master Ref. 1675 from 1972. The matte black dial of this watch features a print signature in red of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the current Ruler of Dubai and Prime Minister of the UAE. It is worth mentioning here that back in 1972, Shaikh Mohammad was the UAE’s Defence Minister. The watch has a pre-sale estimate of $120,000-160,000.