2022 & 2023 horological birthdays

Marking the end of one celebratory year and the start of another year sure to be even more successful, we wanted to draw a focus on the famous anniversaries illustrated between 2022 and 2023.
Antiquorum results increased significantly in 2020 and 2022 ; 2022 totalizing an auction result of more than CHF 74 million, its best year since 7 years.

Triumph of the Métiers d’Art and independent watchmakers

While 2022 saw the continuation of the Rolex, Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet (for the Royal Oak) domination on the market in terms of sales volume, it was above all the triumph of the Métiers d’Art and independent watchmakers.

For instance, the beautiful yellow gold Patek Philippe, ref. 715, “Woman with a water jug” by Vermeer, enamel by Suzanne Rohr is a world record for a Suzanne Rohr enamel pocket watch. Initially acquired at the famous Art of Patek Philippe sale in 1989, this pocket watch has remained in the safe of the buyer ever since. He specifically recalls at the time searching for enamel works by Suzanne Rohr but unfortunately none were available at the time so he had to purchase it through our auction. There is no doubt that Suzanne Rohr is known as being one of the most talented enamellers of her generation, having created some of the most exquisite scenes for Patek Philippe. Signed on the enamel 1967, this was the first year of her collaboration with Patek Philippe making it one of the earliest known to the market. Often inspired by paintings from the 1600 and 1700’s such as Cuyp, Guardi, Vernet, Pagnocki, Fragonard, Renoir, this particular example is the only example based on the famous “Woman and the Jug” painted by Vermeer in 1658.

Patek Philippe, Ref. 715, "Woman with a water jug" by Vermeer, enamel by Suzanne Rohr, yellow gold
Patek Philippe, Ref. 715, "Woman with a water jug" by Vermeer, enamel by Suzanne Rohr, yellow gold

The surge in prices of recent years had already begun to stabilize last May and the second semester sales confirmed this. This trend, combined with the complex period we are living through – health, political, economic and ecological crisis …. – is pushing customers to look for refuge values and “coup de coeur”. The focus is on vintage models with stable ratings and modern independent watchmakers. This is demonstrated by the results of our last auctions.

For example, Richard Mille and F.P Journe hold the new records in terms of results per lot. Richard Mille is in the lead, notably with this unique “Skull – Vanitas” piece (lot 373 of the July 2022 Monaco auction), followed by F.P Journe Chronomètre à résonnance, sold for EUR 456,300.00 (lot 370 of the July 2022 Monaco auction). This is a return to the roots of watchmaking. Customers are looking less for investment than for a passion timepiece. Passion will be the most resistant quality to the current market jolts. Among all the challenges facing the watchmaking industry is the need to renew the offer through new complications or technical advances in design and the mastery of new materials. In this case, the RM 52-01 “Skull Tourbillon”, known as “The Vanitas Vanitatum” is a real technical challenge: managing to sculpt a sapphire case of such quality is an outstanding feat.

A marketing tool brilliantly used by certain watch manufacturers, anniversary dates are an opportunity to highlight certain models.
Omega Speedmaster

Omega introduced its first Speedmaster chronograph in 1957, registered under the reference CK2915, the same year as the Railmaster and the Seamaster 300 models. From 1962, NASA acquired several chronographs from famous manufacturers such as Rolex, Hamilton, Longines and Omega. It is only two years later that an official call for tenders is launched. Becoming the symbol of the space conquest, the choice of the Speedmaster was therefore the fruit of a long reflection and heavy specifications from NASA.

Following this heavy heritage, few of the limited editions bring such envy and excitement to collectors as the Apollo Soyuz. Indeed, in July 1975 the USA and the Soviet Union, putting aside their political conflicts, carried out jointly the first international space mission. This was one of the strongest symbol of “détente” during the Cold War.

Few months later, the famous Omega Italian dealer, Fratelli De Marchi, ordered a limited edition of 500 Speedmaster timepieces to commemorate this major event. The Apollo-Soyuz series were based on the legendary 145.022 – which was the first Speedmaster to use the caliber 861, which replaced the revered caliber 321 from the very first models – but featured a slightly modified case and a dial personalized with the Apollo-Soyuz logo. De Marchi became responsible for the whole distribution of Omega watches throughout Italy in 1921. Even if their partnership ended in the late 1970s, it is a milestone in the watchmaking history, since this retailer was originally behind the very first limited series in steel of the brand’s history.

Taking advantage of the excitement generated by this celebration, in 2022, Swatch collaborated with Omega and launched on 26 March 2022 the MoonSwatch, a bioceramic watch that took on the overall design of the Speedmaster. The mania surrounding the launch of this model is arguably one of the most important publicity stunts of the last 20 years.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

Same for the Royal Oak, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022: the price of this model soared before stabilizing. This is a reflection of the taste for designer watches. Indeed, what makes the Royal Oak so successful is its design. The genius of Gerald Genta (1931-2011) is to have been able to minimise the space, i.e. to flatten the case to the point where it becomes one with the bracelet. It is no longer just a useful object but a piece of jewellery. Collectors are buying a design above all. Moreover, at the time, it was the most expensive steel watch in the world.

Other iconic models celebrated their anniversary but in a more discreet manner, such as the Navitimer by Breitling and the Calatrava by Patek Philippe.
Breitling Navitimer


In 1952, Willy Breitling was contacted by the famous American Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) who asked him to create a new chronograph for its members. The Breitling Navitimer (contraction of navigation and time) was born. Later it was equipped with a 24-hour dial in order to distinguish day and night. On 24 May 1962, a Breitling Navitimer chronograph was the first wristwatch to share in the conquest of space by accompanying the Aurora 7 flight on the wrist of Lt Commander Scott Carpenter. 2022 thus marked a double jubilee for Breitling. In the last November 2022 Geneva auction, a stainless steel Breitling Cosmonaute ref. 809-36 (lot 17) was hammered at CHF 6,875.

Patek Philippe Calatrava


Another anniversary that did not get much attention was that of the Calatrava, one of Patek Philippe’s most emblematic models. With its timeless design, round, classic and refined, it is an icon of the watchmaking history. Launched in 1932, this model has undergone many evolutions such as the ref. 6000G-010 in white gold one of which was sold for more than 16.000 CHF in Geneva in November.

2023 – Back to basics


However, 2023 will temper the horological auction results, as in 2021 and 2022, the speculative bubble that agitated the market on certain models, particularly for the “modern”, has burst and will therefore most probably lead to a drop in future results. Part of this speculation had revolved around the anniversaries of iconic models such as the Omega Speedmaster or the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak. Therefore, on the one hand, buyers are seeking refuge in safe values, and on the other hand, they prefer to favour their personal taste over investment. Finally, such a fall is excellent for the education of the collectors’ watchmaking taste. After two years focusing on investment, habits might change as drawn by the revival of the vintage enthusiasm.

The November 2022 Geneva and January 2023 Monaco results suggest that the love for watchmaking history remains intact. Hence, the stainless steel Patek Philippe, ref. 1463, with a  two-tone silver dial and applied Breguet numerals (lot 200 – Geneva November 2022 auction) was acquired for CHF 475,000. The Patek 1463 is the first Patek Philippe waterproof chronograph, produced from the 1940’s. Out of all the variations, the ones in steel with applied Breguet numerals are the most appreciated and collected.


Sold for more than half a million Euros, the Rolex Antimagnétique ref. 6236 lot illustrates all the expertise and savoir-faire of Rolex, already more than half a century ago. This model was Rolex’s greatest complication for over 50 years. Initially called Dato-Compax, it is nicknamed “Jean-Claude Killy“, after the famous French Olympic skier, three times champion, who wore a Ref. 6236 on his wrist, the last model of the series and, without doubt, the most accomplished.


But if we were to choose only one, it would be the Rolex Midas of Mr René-Paul Jeanneret. An exceptional watch both in its design and in its history. Part of the “Cellini” collection, legend has it that Gérald Genta (1931-2011) designed this model. In the absence of tangible proof, specialists simply agree that he was involved at some point in the design process. René-Paul Jeanneret worked for Rolex from 1948 to 1978. During his 30-year career, he was Hans Wilsdorf’s right-hand man. As Director of Design and Development, it was he who set up Rolex’s famous line of communication, linking the world of sport and that of watchmaking. A keen diver – he was friends with Cousteau – he participated in the creation of the “Submariner” with Hans Wilsdorf. The two men were very close, so much so that it seems that Hans Wilsdorf was the godfather of Mr Jeanneret’s daughter, Dominique. A piece of history, as rarely seen! It is not surprising that the watch sold for more than double its estimate.

rolex_REF. 9630
Anniversaries of sports icons


The next anniversaries to look out for in 2023, will be the Rolex Daytona and the Heuer Carrera, celebrating their 60th birthday. The later already decided to present an anniversary model in a limited edition of 600 pieces, its design inherited from the famous 2447 SN.

Another sports icon, the Blancpain Fifthy Fathoms, the first modern diver’s wristwatch, launched in 1953, will celebrate its 70th jubilee. The brand released a dedicated new model, featuring an exclusive 42 mm diameter and composed of three 70-piece limited series. A 70th anniversary too, for the Rolex Submariner which is perhaps one of if not the most coveted dive watch in the world, and Antiquorum is proud to hold all the world records for the Rolex Submariner COMEX references sold at auction.

Time will tell if these celebrations will durably impact the watch auction market, or not.

Important Modern & Vintage Timepieces & Jewelry

25th November 2023 (Sat) | 3pm Hong Kong time

Venue: Mandarin Oriental, 5 Connaught Road, Central Hong Kong.

Online Registration: www.antiquorum.swiss

Macau Preview: 11th November 2023 (Sat) | 11 am to 6 pm

Venue: Macau Timepiece Museum, Travessa DE S. Paulo No. 1AB Macau

Hong Kong Preview: 22nd-24th November 2023 (Wed-Fri) | 11am to 7pm

Venue: Room 706, The Galleria, 9 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong

Hong Kong, 6th November 2023 – Antiquorum Hong Kong is thrilled to unveil its autumn auction, set to take place on November 25th at The Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, bringing a remarkable collection of 274 modern and vintage timepieces from prestigious manufacturers such as Patek Philippe, Rolex, Audemars Piguet, and more. An exceptional highlight of the sale includes important vintage pieces of historical significance, as well as some high complication timepieces representing the ultimate sincerity and craftsmanship in Haute Horlogerie. Previews will be open to the public in Macau and Hong Kong in the days leading up to the event, providing a unique opportunity for aficionados and collectors to experience these extraordinary timepieces firsthand.

Lot 274

Rolex Ref. 6263, Daytona, Paul Newman, Steel

Estimate: HK$ 2,600,000 – 4,350,000

Produced from 1971 to 1987, the Ref. 6263 is one of the most iconic vintage Rolex. It is easily recognizable by its screwed-in pusher, and the beautiful black bakelite bezel. This reference, along with Ref. 6265, are the last references produced by Rolex using a manual-winding movement.

The current example of Ref. 6263 was made around 1971, features a MK2 Paul Newman dial, which is named after the famous Hollywood actor who achieved a successful career in motorsports later in life. From the black and white high-contrast dial to the stepped sub-dials with square shape markers and reading-friendly bold numerals, all details were specially designed to be more visible to the car racers.

Lot 273

Patek Philippe, Ref. 1463, Chronograph, Asthmometer Dial, Steel, Possibly piece unique

The Patek Philippe Ref. 1463 was launched in 1940. It was the brand’s first ever fully waterproof case with oversized round pushers. Its size was also larger comparing to the brand’s previous chronograph model. All these features together make this reference a distinctive, robust, and sporty chronograph at the time.

This example of Ref. 1463 was one of the rarest among all variations of the same reference. It features a steel case with a special asthmometer dial and is believed to be the personal watch of the legendary watchmaker Jacques Golay, a skilled Régleur working with Patek Philippe at the time.

According to a hand-written letter from Jacques Golay’s son Jules Golay, this special Ref. 1463 was made by the watchmaker himself at the workshop Victorin Piguet, part of the renowned Patek Philippe group of companies, in 1940-50s.

Previously sold at the November Antiquorum Geneva auction in 2012 for the impressive price of CHF 194,500, this extraordinary timepiece has been impeccably preserved by the same owner since then. Now, it resurfaces in the market, giving collectors and enthusiasts a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire a cherished piece of horological history.

Lot 272

Patek Philippe Ref. 533, Chronograph, 18K pink gold

Estimate: HK$ 380,000 – 600,000

The Patek Philippe Ref. 533 was launched in 1937, featuring a slightly larger case size compared to its predecessor Ref. 130. With its elegant Calatrava case and flat bezel, it is often revered as the epitome of 1950s chronographs. This example of Ref. 533 features a pink gold case and a pink dial, also known as ‘Pink on Pink’, which is exceptionally rare and highly sought after by collectors. It is believed that the total production of this reference is limited to only 350 pieces, adding to their desirability and exclusivity.

Lot 266

Patek Philippe Ref. 5971P-001, Perpetual Calendar Chronograph, Platinum

Estimate: HK$ 1,700,000 – 2,450,000

The Ref. 5971, introduced in 2007, features a platinum case with a bezel set with 36 baguette diamonds and a black lacquered dial. It is considered as a luxurious variation of the Ref. 5970. Despite its exquisite design, the Ref. 5971 was only available in the product catalogue for three years, indicating its rarity with an estimated production number not exceeding one hundred units. Regarded as the “classic column-wheel chronograph with perpetual calendar, accented by the eternal fire of diamonds,” the Ref. 5971 is highly prized by connoisseurs for its exceptional craftsmanship and timeless beauty.

Lot 265

Patek Philippe Ref. 5970G-001, Perpetual Calendar Chronograph, 18K white gold

Estimate: HK$ 1,100,000 – 1,560,000

The Patek Philippe Ref. 5970 is a remarkable timepiece that represents the last Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph model that utilizes the CH 27-70 Q movement, which is based on the renowned Lemania 2310. Produced between 2004 and 2010, this reference is a highly sought-after watch with limited production numbers. In total, there were less than 3,000 pieces made across four variations. The white gold version alone is estimated to have approximately 1,000 to 1,200 examples. Its rarity, coupled with its exquisite craftsmanship and timeless design, make this reference a true gem in the world of horology.

Lot 172

Patek Philippe, Ref. 5101P-010, 10 Day Tourbillon, Platinum

Estimate: HK$ 780,000 – 1,250,000

The Patek Philippe reference 5101P was introduced in 2003. With its distinctive triple-stepped flanks and seamlessly curved case merging with the sapphire crystal, it exudes elegance and comfort. Powered by the in-house caliber 28-20/222, it houses rare complications within its rectangular form. Twin mainspring barrels provide an impressive 10-day power reserve, while a delicate one-minute tourbillon carriage ensures precision. Certified by C.O.S.C. and bearing the prestigious Geneva Seal, the reference 5101P-010 embodies Patek Philippe’s unwavering commitment to excellence.

Lot 149

Jaeger-LeCoultre, Ref. 149.3.34.S,
Master Grand Tourbillon Enamel Van Gogh,
18K white gold, Limited Edition of 18 pieces

Estimate: HK$ 450,000 – 880,000

This limited edition timepiece showcases a remarkable miniature enamel painting on the dial, featuring Van Gogh’s iconic Starry Night. Every stroke and detail has been meticulously crafted, capturing the essence of the original artwork. Equipped with an award-winning automatic tourbillon movement cal. 978, this watch seamlessly blends exceptional craftsmanship and technical precision. Limited to only 18 pieces, it is a true collector’s item that embodies the fusion of fine watchmaking and the world of art.

Lot 267

Cartier, Ref. HPI01203, Rencontre de Panthères,
18K white gold

Estimate: HK$ 680,000 – 900,000

Cartier takes its exploration of complications to new heights with the Rencontre de Panthères watch. Breaking tradition, Cartier showcases the inner workings of the movement on the dial, revealing the oscillating weight in a captivating display. The dial features two panthers engaged in a fierce battle over a diamond ring, symbolizing the power and intensity of time. As the wearer’s wrist moves, the oscillations charge the barrel, which powers the watch’s heart.

18K white gold case with set with 395 brilliant-cut diamonds totalling 5.85 carats; Panther motif set with 288 brilliant-cut diamonds totalling 0.74 carats, marquise-cut emerald eyes, black lacquer spots, two-tone hands in rhodium-finish steel and black. This fusion of aesthetics and function delivers a masterful blend of style and refinement. The intricate details of the panthers’ faces, ears, and spots demonstrate Cartier’s commitment to graphic excellence.

Lot 153

Audemars Piguet, Ref. 26221FT.OO.D002CA.01,
Royal Oak Concept Laptimer Michael Schumacher, Forged Carbon, Limited Edition of 221 Pieces

Estimate: HK$ 800,000 – 1,300,000

Designed with motorsport enthusiasts in mind, the Royal Oak Concept Laptimer features a unique laptimer chronograph function. This innovative feature allows drivers to measure and record individual lap times during races or track sessions. With its double central second hands and flyback capability, it enables precise timing, making it an indispensable tool for professional racing.

The forged carbon case provides strength and durability, while the curved sapphire crystal ensures optimal visibility and protection. The black openworked dial showcases a 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock, while the luminescent-coated white gold Royal Oak hands enhance legibility in any lighting condition.

Limited to only 221 pieces, this timepiece pays tribute to the legendary Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher. Schumacher’s pursuit of perfection and his relentless drive for success perfectly align with the spirit of the Royal Oak Concept Laptimer.

Lot 271

Audemars Piguet, Ref. 26265FO.OO.D002CR.01,
Royal Oak Concept Carbon Tourbillon Chronograph, Forged Carbon

Estimate: HK$ 700,000 – 1,000,000

Introduced in 2008, the Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Concept Carbon Tourbillon Chronograph is an evolution of the Royal Oak Concept collection, which was unveiled in 2002 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the iconic Royal Oak collection. The watch’s case is crafted from an extremely dense carbon, resulting in an ultra-lightweight, robust structure that can withstand thermal shocks. In a display of inventive material usage, the timepiece incorporates new elements from the aviation and automotive industries, including eloxed aluminum, PVD coating, amorphous carbon coating, and ceramics. The watch packs a punch with its horological functions, boasting a tourbillon, a 10-day power reserve with an indicator, and a high-performance chronograph, showcasing the brand’s commitment to precision and performance.

Lot 270

Lange & Söhne, Ref. 145.032, Zeitwerk Striking Time, 18K pink gold

Estimate: HK$ 650,000 – 1,000,000

The A. Lange & Söhne’s Zeitwerk Striking Time was launched in the year 2011. It was the first Lange wristwatch with a chiming mechanism that acoustically indicates the full and quarter hours. Its unique features include a jumping numerals display and a visible striking mechanism. The striking mechanism chimes every quarter-hour and full hour, producing a high-pitched tone and a vigorous, lower pitched tone respectively.

Lot 268

F.P. Journe, Octa Lune, Platinum

Estimate: HK$ 500,000 – 880,000

The F.P.Journe Octa Lune combines technical excellence with poetic elegance. The watch’s automatic movement 1300-2, crafted in 18K rose gold, offers a remarkable power reserve of over five days. The moon phase complication, with its intricately crafted 18K gold moon and stars against a deep blue background, adds a touch of enchantment to the watch. The guilloché silver subdials, blued hands, and steel rings further enhance its visual appeal.

Lot 145

Hublot, Ref. 304.PX.1180.LR,
Big Bang Minutes Repeater Tourbillon,
18K pink gold, Limited Edition of 10 pieces

Estimate: HK$ 330,000 – 580,000

Crafted around 2015, this exceptional watch features two impressive complications, a tourbillon and a minute repeater. The 18K pink gold case and bezel, complemented by titanium screws, exude a timeless elegance. With only 10 pieces ever produced, and this particular watch numbered 0, it holds a special place in the world of luxury timepieces.


Established in Geneva in 1974, Antiquorum has carved its own unparalleled niche in the auction world through its focused expertise in horology and by cultivating a thriving collector’s market for timepieces worldwide. The world’s premier auctioneer of fine modern and vintage timepieces has set world records for auction sales and holds several auctions a year in Geneva and Hong Kong, with previews held in major cities worldwide. Antiquorum maintains offices in Geneva, Hong Kong, Monaco, Milan, Paris, Munich, Shanghai, Singapore and Bangkok.





Marketing Department – Antiquorum Hong Kong

+852 25224168


Room 706, 9 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong

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