This week, we are coming back with a handful of outstanding vintage pieces from 40s to 70s and of course, our Unicorn Find (to be revealed later in the article). Let's check them out (and have a great weekend)!
<HKD 20,000: 1947 Omega Tuxedo Dial
Aptly named the "Tuxedo", the dial is of a two-tone, creamy and black variation (much like the colors seen on a Tuxedo), with sector track printed on its outer perimeter and Arabic numerals. And it's an arrangement hardly seen in modern watches anymore. Sure, Rolex has something similar, but this Omega definitely tops it from an aesthetic point of view. This 1947 beauty comes in a surprisingly modern 36mm case and apart from the rather overly patinated dial and hands, the rest of it features are absolutely stunning and channel that Great Gatsby vibe.
The overall condition is outstanding for a 70-year-old, manually-wound watch and it even comes with 43 good hours of power reserve! We can't see how you can't don it in your cool friend's birthday party in 2016.
This amazing Omega Tuxedo dial is being offered here for around HKD12,000. Steal of the day.
HKD 20,000 - 50,000: A 1960s Movado m95 Chronograph
First thing first, Movado back then, is nothing like Movado today. It was one of the few brands capable of manufacturing its in-house chronographs and we have a prime example here: Caliber m95. It is a modular, column wheel chronograph and the first of its kind. The original dial with tachy/tele-meter is a sight to behold, shows very minimal signs of wear and contains the right amount of colors just to keep things from looking staid without overkilling it.
This super well preserved m95 Chronograph could be had here for around HKD 27,500.
HKD 50,000 - 100,000: A 1978 Tudor Big Block with Exotic Dial
This Tudor Ref. 94300, aka. the Big Block, comes in excellent condition with thick and even lugs, suggesting it is likely the case has never been re-polished. Powered by the tried and tested Valjoux 7750, the 39mm Big Block has all the lovely features that remind us of the Rolex Daytonas (e.g. Ref. 6265) from the same era: steel tachymeter bezel, screw pushers etc. But what makes this Big Block extra special, is what we call the exotic dial in black and orange, nicely rounded off with a catchy chronograph hand also in orange, a rare find in general.
You can purchase this razor-sharp Big Block here for around HKD62,000.
And......The Unicorn Find: The 19th F.P. Journe Wristwatch EVER MADE, the "Souscription" Tourbillon
F.P.Journe, the critically acclaimed, outrageously talented French watchmaker was, before his wristwatch debut in 1999, a successful artisan of bespoke pocket watches for top collectors. But that doesn't mean the transition into an independent wristwatch manufacturer was not met with any trouble. In fact, the biggest problem of all, came up: money.
He simply didn't have enough capital to create his first wristwatches (which made a lot of sense retrospectively speaking, given his ambition to make his debut collection a groundbreaking one).
So, he turned to a solution somewhat like what people are doing with Kickstarter today: reaching out to a handful of selected clients for down payments to finance his eventual creation, a practice known as "Souscription". A total of 20 lucky souls were solicited by Journe and each of them received what would eventually become the absolute foundation of what F.P.Journe the brand has gone on to become.
Today, we are looking at the 19th of the first 20 such watches, to be auctioned by Phillips in The Geneve Watch Auction: Three in May 2016. The Souscription Tourbillon, as the name suggested, prominently features a dreamy tourbillon spinning away on the left hand side of the dial, with the actual time face sitting on the right in perfect symmetry. Not only does it come with a tourbillon, which is hard enough to make in its own right, there's also a remontoire, a constant force device to ensure high time-telling accuracy, built into the movement. To commemorate the first 20 wristwatches made by Journe, each one comes with its unique number at 2 o'clock. An elegant power reserve indicator fills up the space between 11 and 12 o'clock nicely. Everything is housed in a tasteful 38mm platinum case.
Phillips gives this historically important wristwatch an estimate of CHF120,000 - 180,000 and I can double-guarantee you the sale will close higher, potentially much higher than the estimate. Simply because, why not?