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For the second time this month I find myself breaking TWL’s somewhat unspoken law of not writing about vintage timepieces. I am hoping you will forgive this transgression however when you read what I have to share with you.

You see I just received an email from a friend saying that German-based on-line auction house Auctionata (more on them later) will be holding an ‘important watches’ auction on the 7th of June. The highlight? A 1953 Patek Philippe Ref 2499 2nd Series Calibre 13 Perpetual Calendar in yellow gold.

Patek Philippe Ref 2499

Patek Philippe Ref. 2499

Photo credit: Klas Förster

For those not familiar with the significance of this particular piece a bit of background is undoubtedly helpful. Production of the Patek Philippe Ref 2499 commenced in 1951 and ceased in 1985, and since that time it has become somewhat of a cult watch for Patek lovers everywhere. It is largely considered to be one of the brand’s most significant timepieces of the time, due to its relative technical and aesthetic complexity (perpetual calendar, intergrated bi-compax chronograph, moon-phase, etc), and played a key role in influencing the future direction of the company.

All in all a grand total of only 349 pieces were ever produced, in four distinct series (including two extra special pieces in platinum commissioned by Philippe Stern himself – one of which ended up in Eric Clapton’s private collection before it went to auction last year, netting $3.65m.) This particular model is from the 2nd series, which according to Auctionata’s watch expert, Oliver Hoffman, is considered to be the rarest series of the four, after the first series of course.

Patek Philippe Ref. 2499
Photo credit: Klas Förster

These first two series were characterized by square chronograph buttons, feuille hands and applied Arabic numerals and a very few, including the one for sale, even featured a tachymeter or telemeter scale (this one has a tachymeter scale making it even rarer still).

As you would imagine then, Ref 2499’s don’t come up at auction too often due to their rarity, and this only serves to make them even more desirable to collectors. Incredibly though the previous owner, a well-known Swiss businessman, had been using this model almost as his daily wearer ever since he bought it second-hand 30 years ago.

Patek Philippe Ref. 2499
Photo credit: Klas Förster

The piece is still in remarkably good condition however despite now being over 50 years old and is a testament to the exemplary quality of all Patek timepieces. As you would expect it is far from mint condition however according to Auctionata’s watch expert it has only genuine, authentic parts and functions perfectly, having been put in to be serviced every year by its fastidious owner.

As I mentioned before the watch will go to auction on Friday the 7th of June at 6pm CET and the starting price has been set at €180.000 (approx. US$235,000), which is probably a bit on the low side. Don’t expect it to stay that way for long though once bidding starts although it’s hard to say what impact, if any, the condition of the watch will have on the sale. In order to participate in the auction and have the chance of adding this incredible timepiece to your collection you will need to register online with Auctionata.

Patek Philippe Ref. 2499
Photo credit: Klas Förster

It goes without saying that there will also be a number of other very cool pieces up for sale in June’s auction from notable brands such as Vacheron Constantin and Lange & Söhne just to name a few, so even if the Patek is out of your range it is still well worth checking out.

About Auctionata
Now for those, like myself, wondering what the heck Auctionata is, please allow me to provide some further information. Based in Germany this relatively new company is essentially an on-line auction house, with real time bidding possible for up to 20,000 viewers at a time all over the world. The company recently raised $20 million in start-up funding and have invested a significant proportion of this into top of the range camera equipment that allows auction viewers to see all items up close and in incredible detail.

I won’t bore you with too many more details but for anyone who is interested there is a great article on Forbes about this bold newcomer.

Well, hopefully you will agree that it was worthwhile breaking my own rule to bring you what I think is some very interesting (and perhaps to some of you, even exciting) information. If you do choose to bid please let me know as I would love to hear all about it, even if you’re unsuccessful. Of course if you are successful than I definitely want to hear about it! Good luck, happy bidding and don’t forget to register!

www.auctionata.com

Tom Mulraney
Tom Mulraney
Founder & Editor
Tom likes to write about luxury watches. So much so, that he created The Watch Lounge just so he would have an outlet for his passion. Together with his team, he is dedicated to bringing you original, entertaining (and maybe even a little educational) luxury watch and lifestyle content.

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