For those who can’t take the drama of live auctions—with the gavel and the nods and the winks—Christie’s offers online auctions and also puts certain items up for sale at fixed prices. For especially rare items, the house will arrange private sales. It’s all very hush-hush.
“We have access to, really, the best collections in the world,” says Reginald Brack, Christie’s senior vice president of international retail, watch division. “So, we are able to find these impossible-to-find pieces and marry them to the right owner.”
Let’s take a look at some of the latest loot. The comments are Brack’s.
CARTIER PASHA, CIRCA 1998 ($2,400)
“The Cartier Pasha was redesigned by the famous artist Gérald Genta, in the mid-1980s. Cartier rereleased this watch with very unusual features: One is the crown that hinges off like a canteen and screws down for the watch to be waterproof. Also, with this relaunch, was a crystal protector on these original watches back in World War Two.”
PATEK PHILIPPE CALATRAVA, CIRCA 2002 ($17,900)
“This Patek Philippe Calatrava, reference 5170G, is in 18-karat white gold. What we love about this Calatrava is that it really adds a sporty element to this serious dress watch. With the shoulder guards on either side of the crown, it really adds a beefier element to this otherwise refined dress watch.”
ROLEX GMT-MASTER, CIRCA 1969 ($8,100)
“Perhaps the most widely recog-nizable Rolex, the GMT-Master, reference 1675—this one from 1969—is a must-have in every Rolex sport collectors’ collection. Originally commissioned by Pan Am, for Rolex to manufacture a two-time-zone watch for its pilots who were suffering from a then-new phenomenon called jet lag, this watch became synonymous with the adventurous commercial-airline pilots of the 1960s and remains infinitely popular today.”