Patek Philippe ref. 1518 Perpetual Calendar Chronograph: The only publicly known reference 1518 to be double-signed, numbered and certified by Cartier at Rare Watches Geneva Live Sale, Christie’s Geneva, 7 November 2022.
From a remarkable collection comes a most remarkable timepiece. For the first time at auction, the only known example of a Patek Philippe reference 1518 perpetual calendar chronograph, Patek Philippe’s most symbolic of complications, signed, numbered and certified by one of the world’s most aristocratic jewellers – Cartier. This watch will be presented at The Rare Watches auction, a live auction to be held by Christie’s on November 7th, 2022, at the Hotel des Bergues in Geneva.
Rémi Guillemin, Head of Watches Christie’s Geneva, says: “A timepiece that so uniquely combines beauty with horological mastery, exceptional provenance with exquisite rarity, two legendary signatures of luxury and watchmaking… for a collector, it is a once-in-a-lifetime alignment of the stars. This Patek Philippe ref. 1518, double-signed by Cartier and certified by Cartier, is the only known example of this highly exclusive combination, and never before has been offered at auction. The 1518 is the earliest Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch to have been serially produced. In fact, it is the first series-produced perpetual chronograph wristwatch by any manufacturer, ever – which also makes the ref. 1518, and this one in particular, also the rarest.”
Patek Philippe ref. 1518 Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
Estimate: CHF1,500,000-2,500,000 | US$1,600,000-2,600,000 |€1,600,000-2,600,000
An extremely fine, highly important and most probably unique Patek Philippe 18k gold perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch manufactured in 1944. It is the only known reference 1518 double-signed and certified by Cartier.
As such, it is of historic significance and naturally, one of the ultimate and most exclusive trophy watches of the reference. Besides the eye-catching signature ‘Cartier’ on the dial below the moon phase, an equally fascinating feature is Cartier’s hand-stamped five-digit reference no. 17544 underneath the upper left lug.
The rarest hallmark complication
Reference 1518 is not only the earliest Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch serially produced; it is the first produced by any manufacturer, ever. And ref. 1518 is the rarest. This particular combination of complications confirmed Patek Philippe’s pre-eminent position as the greatest watch brand in the world. A reputation upheld to this day. Indeed, these technically remarkable timepieces, so closely linked to the fortunes of the company over the last 80 years, have become icons of ‘golden age’ mid-20th century design.
Only 281 were produced – in yellow and pink gold, as well as a few examples in steel – between 1941 to 1954. Its scarcity frustrated dozens of clients, as it was reserved for the most prominent Patek Philippe patrons such as Henry Graves Jr, the King of Jordan and the King of Egypt.
The unique Patek Philippe ref. 1518 perpetual calendar chronograph will be presented at Christie’s Rare Watches, a live auction on November 7th, 2022, at the Hotel des Bergues in Geneva.
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*Please note when quoting estimates above that other fees will apply in addition to the hammer price – see Section D of the Conditions of Sale at the back of the sale catalogue.
*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium. Sales totals are hammer price plus buyer’s premium and are reported net of applicable fees.
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