Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The most expensive watch in the world

This weekend, history was made. A one of a kind Patek Phillipe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010 sold for AUD $45.3 million. The previous world record for the highest priced wristwatch sold at auction was Rolex Daytona 'Paul Newman' but Patek sold for more than double.

What is so special about it you might wonder? The world record price is a combination of three factors.

Firstly, Patek 6300A-010 is simply an amazing watch. It is one of the most complicated Patek wristwatches ever made featuring over 20 complications which include no fewer than five chiming modes, two of which are patented world firsts. It stands out as the first and only Grandmaster Chime made in stainless steel. It features a hand guilloched hobnail rose gold dial on one side, as well as a black ebony dial on the other. To put it simply, this is the Grand Daddy of Patek Phillipe watches.

The second factor is the venue. The watch was part of 50 one of a kind timepieces auctioned by Christie's on behalf of a charity event called Only Watch. This bi-annual event held in Monaco is a who's who of horology; both mega brands and independent watchmakers submit one piece for auction where all proceedings go to charity.

The third reason is rather bizarre: there is simply so much cash floating around. While AUD $45 million for a wristwatch is insane, this is still just pocket money for a billionaire. There are currently 2,153 billionaires on the planet with a combined wealth exceeding GDP of 153 countries and this list does not include the thousands of billionaires who made their money dealing in illegal stuff.

Overall, the auction was a success where both brands and charity were winners, with a number of pieces setting brand records. At the auction: Tudor sold for half a million Australian dollars, Hublot sold for $350,000, Hermes sold for $307,000, Louis Vuitton for $409,000, Chanel for $190,000, and Bell & Ross sold for $80,000. 
By the way, if you happen to be the owner of the most expensive watch in the world then I would like to remind you that your Patek is not water resistant. The more complex they are, the less waterproof. And no, you cannot wear it in the shower. 

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