The auction by Antiquorum in Geneva, Switzerland, offered vintage watches from all the leading watch houses. First to go under the hammer for record prices was the Rolex, Ref. 6034 (LOT 379), Oyster Chronograph, 18K rose gold. Made circa 1955, this extremely rare manual wind chronograph wristwatch was the best example that Antiquorum had ever offered at auction. The new owner won it, bidding over CHF 600’000(£509,659).
Another extremely rare Rolex Ref. 1680 Submariner COMEX (Lot 346) from 1979 was sold for more than half a million CHF 524’000 (£445,103).
The COMEX Ref. 1680 is probably the rarest of all COMEX sport watches, since COMEX only commissioned approximately 60 examples. The great majority of those were later serviced with the COMEX dial replaced with a regular Rolex dial.
This example has survived in amazing condition and was never used for diving operations. It is accompanied by its original punched warranty, another unusual feature as most were retained by Comex and never given to the final owner.
The third world record was achieved by the Rolex Ref. 1680, Red Submariner, Meter First Mark II (LOT 345), selling for CHF 103’750 (£88,128).
The ‘Red’ Submariner is one of the most sought-after vintage Rolex references. This example is in fantastic condition and has a gorgeous brown aged and incredibly uniform tropical dial, with original papers from 1969. It was sold with its original fitted box, punched Chronometer attestation and fitted bracelet.
If you would like your watch valued for insurance or for sale, our experts will be delighted to help. We can also advise on essential servicing and repairs to keep your watch in top working order.
Contact us now on 0207 495 3439 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
"I had bought a 1970s Pepsi GMT at auction and it needed some work. The lume on the hands was breaking up. Rolex UK wanted some hilarious price and threatened to replace the hands with new ones if their work failed - all at my expense of course. Steven Hale and co managed to repair the hands and maintain the original patina of the 40 plus year old watch which was of course crucial! Highly recommended."
"My great grand-father's Breguet was given to me by my father for my 21st birthday. 30 years later, post restoration by SHWR, it is in far better shape than I have ever seen it. SHWR's craftsmanship is immaculate. The firm is polite, professional and honest. Outstanding - I cannot recall another occasion when I have been so favourably impressed."
"I have just had my 1934 Rolex Oyster repaired. From start to finish I had full confidence in every one I had contact with at Steven Hale. They have been very efficient in identifying the problems at the initial examination and dealing with them as promised. There were no nasty surprises and unexpected complications along the way. Because of the age of my watch, spares are not available, and new parts have had to be made - all very expertly done. They even polished the gold case and my 86yr old watch now looks as good as new. You can certainly trust these people with your precious timepieces."
"Fantastic job repairing a family heirloom pocket watch which will now return home to Namibia.
The service was superb with detailed repair and service quote. Communication throughout was equally great leaving you with the confidence that you watch is in the best possible hands."
"These are watch lovers and it shows. Their meticulous craftsmanship and expertise make them unique in London and I suspect that only in Switzerland may their equivalents be found. The experience of Steven Hale Watch Restoration begins with the talented and charming individuals who are client facing in South Molton Street and who instil a confidence that is consequently fully fulfilled. This firm represents unequalled talent in its field as well as exceptional client service. I have seldom recommended anyone with greater conviction."