Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 sold for 11,002,000 Swiss francs at the Phillips auction held in Geneva in 2016. It was the most expensive wristwatch ever sold and broke a record.
Where is the right address to hunt for a rare watch? For those who remember American actor Paul Newman’s Paul Newman Daytona, which was sold for approximately 18 million dollars in 2017, one of the first answers that comes to mind will be Phillips Auction House. The Paul Newman Daytona, which broke the record as one of the most expensive watches sold at an auction, was one of the rare watches put up for auction by the Phillips Watch Division, in collaboration with Bacs and Russo, in recent years. The list of rare watches that Phillips puts up for sale is quite long, let’s keep this beautiful Rolex Daytona aside for now; We present to you the Patek Philippe Ref. We will tell the story of 1518: A rare Patek Philippe watch produced during the Second World War, which broke the record at the Phillips auction held in 2016.
Ref. 1518 produced from 1941 to the early 1950s. The series is one of the most popular watches of watch enthusiasts and collectors. What we are talking about is Ref. 1518 is a Patek Philippe watch produced in a stainless steel case. Indeed, it is a steel-cased watch designed during the Second World War, at a time when the brand only produced watches with platinum or gold cases… This is actually one of the reasons why the watch is so desired. Today, there are only four Patek Philippe Refs in the world. It has 1518 watches, this rare watch is also the brand’s first chronograph with a perpetual calendar. Ref. carries the latest technology and design beauty of the time it was produced. A total of 281 watches were produced in the 1518 series, and most of these watches were in yellow gold and approximately 20 percent were in pink gold cases. Produced for approximately fifteen years, Ref. It is known that there were four models of 1518 watches with stainless steel cases (Patek Philippe did not produce stainless steel watches regularly and serially until the 1970s). Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 sold at the Phillips auction in Geneva in 2016. The watch was the only model of these four watches that had not been auctioned until that day. The watch broke a world record by selling for 11,002,000 Swiss francs and went down in history as the most expensive wristwatch ever sold.
The watch, which has survived to this day without any wear on its Gay Frères steel bracelet and other details, is very well preserved. The code “508473” is engraved on the case back. Below the serial number is the number “1”; This is the watch’s first version in stainless steel. It shows that it is a 1518 model.
While looking at the 1518 model (and of course its photographs), I think once again about the issue we pursued and examined in this issue: What is rare? A Patek Philippe watch that has a handcrafted dial, goes beyond what was common at the time and uses stainless steel in its case and bracelet, blends the technique and aesthetics of the period together, and comes out of the years when the Second World War turned many things into mass production and made them anonymous, is definitely “rare”.