Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

The 2008 auction season began under Antiquorum's hammer in Geneva over the week end. Vacheron Constantin was very well respresented with 46 lots (all vintage) from simple time only to the most complicated. The results are rather interesting abut hard to analyse: some time only watches went for amazingly high prices whereas the minute repeater on the catalogue cover did not sell!! Was this due to the supposed economic downturn or the USD hitting new lows? Its too soon to tell, we'll need to wait for the results of the forthcomming sales to see if there is a pattern here.

Herebelow a selection of the more interesting pieces sold by Antiquorum in the March 15-16 auction (prices include buyer premium but not VAT):

LOT 265 Evasion: Made in the early 2000 this world time watch was made in 100 pieces in rose gold and 100 in white gold specially for the Japanese market. Estimated at  CHF10,000 - 12,000 ($9,000 - 11,000 (€6,000 - 7,500) it sold for CHF11,400 ($11,629 / €7,358)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

LOT 323 Ref. 4651: Yellow gold manual wind (cal 453) with a beautiful guilloché dial, 35mm case made in 1952.  Estimated at  CHF 11,000 - 13,000 ($10,000 - 12,000) (€6,800 - 8,000) it sold over its high estimate for CHF 14,400 (€9,300 / $14,684)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

LOT 332 Ref 6394Q: A watch which is slowly becoing a favorite of mine with is beautifull guilloché case band. This white gold model (35mm case) using the automatic caliber K1072 was made in 1964. Estimated at CHF10,000 - 12,000 ($9,000 - 11,000) (€6,200 - 7,500) sold over its high estimate for CHF 16,800 ($17,131 / €10,848) 

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction 

LOT 333 Chronomètre Royal ref 4838. An iconic vacheron Constantin, the prices are steadily going up but at this price point they still are a great bang for your buck, a must have!!  Using the gorgeous cal 1008BS (bearing the Geneva Hallmark) this yellow gold model (36mm case size) was made circa 1953. Estimated at CHF 7,000 - 9,000 ($6,300  - 8,100) (€4,300- 5,600) it doubled its low estimate and  sold for CHF14,400 (€9,300 / $14,684) 

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction 

Lot 570: Made in 1931 an amazing 18K white and yellow gold jump hour, wandering minutes made for Alexander I Karagjordgevic, King of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. Estimated at CHF18,000 - 25,000 ($16,000 - 23,000) (€11,000 - 16,000) it sold  for CHF 25,200 (€16,275 / $25,707)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

Lot 611: Another watch belonging to Alexander I Karagjordgevic, King of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes . Made in 1929 with rather large dimensions for its time ( 22 x 44 mm) the case is in gold and platinum. Estimated at  CHF8,000- 12,000  ($7,200 - 11,000) (€5,000 - 7,500) it almost doubled its low estimate selling for CHF 15,600 ($15,913 / €10,071)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

LOT 622 :  Platinum dress watch with chronograph and instantaneous 30-minute register, made in 1928. Estimated at CHF22,000 - 27,000 ($20,000 - 24,000) (€14,000- 17,000) it sold for 26,400 (€17,045 / $26,927) 

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction 

Lot 657 Ref 7778: Something very rarely seenand to the best of my knowledge this is the only wrist watch with alarm made by VC.  Made in 1966. Estimated at CHF17,000 - 22,000 ($15,000 - 20,000) (€11,000 - 14,000) it doubled its low estimate selling for CHF25,200 (€16,271 / $25,692)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

Lot 658 Ref 4737 “Pink Cioccolatone”: One of my all time favorite VC. The Cioccolatone was huge for its time at 43x35mm, this model made in 1957 houses an automatic cal 1019. Estimated at CHF38,000 - 48,000 ($34,000 - 43,000) (€24,000 - 30,000) it sold for  CHF44,600 ($45,490 / €28,800)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

LOT 659 Ref 4623:  Made in 1953, this triple date moonphase houses the cal V495 in a 32mm pink gold case. Estimated at CHF20,000 - 25,000 ($18,000 - 23,000) (€12,000 - 16,000) and sold above high estimate for  CHF33,600 (€21,693 / $34,273)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

LOT 663 Ref. 4072:  An auction would not be complete without a Vacheron Constantin chronograph would it?! Made in 1943 this model is very rare due to its steel case (33mm). Estimated at CHF 45,000 - 55,000 ($40,000 - 50,000) (€28,000 - 35,000) it sold for 52,800 ($53,683 / €34,100)

Auction Report: Antiquorum Geneva March 15-16 2008 auction

The tendency is very clear :-)
03/17/2008 - 13:12


Thanks for the update...
03/17/2008 - 13:20

I like the Triple Date Moonphase, very nice. Which reminds me, Alex, please keep pushing VC for the HL special edition (it would be such a special and beautiful watch. VC simply cannot afford not to make it, it is part of its Destiny)

I'm thinking of taking Doc's "&" approach for HL SE... beware 

The HL SE...
03/17/2008 - 13:23

definately needs the &

if it makes Doc happy, of course...
03/17/2008 - 13:30

what I meant was that I will hound VC and Alex until it becomes a reality...

Regarding the prices...
03/17/2008 - 13:28

...I am not sure for how long they will be able to maintain themselves at these levels...

The economic forecasts are looking gloomy, and me thinks that the luxury industry is going to get a pretty big smack on the face. Me thinks that for VC vintage lovers, buying season is approaching fast...

Is it so sure? (nt)
03/17/2008 - 13:40


Re: Regarding the prices...
03/17/2008 - 19:52

I agree with you, Patrice.

The US and Canada are not the only one to be hit.

Just wait a bit.

My prediction is that you will see a relative glut of watches hit the auction houses soon ($5000-$80000).

THose that buy more expensive watches may be financially secure enoughn to not have to dump their watches, but they will likely be more selective in their purchases.

Just my 2 cents worth


Desole!. Ca aurait ete "Francois", pas "Patrice"
03/17/2008 - 23:03

Je suis vraiment ahuri, Francois!

j'ai la tete etourdie!


my thinking exactly... (nt)
03/18/2008 - 11:59


Thanks Alex...
03/17/2008 - 14:11

...there was not a minutes repeater in pik gold too? I am curious to know its end price

Did not sell........nt
03/17/2008 - 14:21


Thanks for your answer Mario!! She is probably waiting for me LoL (nt)
03/17/2008 - 16:19


I don't think economy downturn will affect vintage pieces.
03/17/2008 - 14:20

Even with the buyer's premium, the vintage VCs are still relatively cheaper than the current models.  I believe the imminent recession will definitely affect the current pieces in Malaysia.

It does not matter how VC is going to control the discount structure (25%), during the tough time, the customers always have better bargaining power.  I remember in 1998/1999, a A  Lange & Sohne Pour Le Merits tourbilon was asking for about USD53,000.  Believe it or not, there was no taker.

In 1998/1999, VC's Mercator also had no taker for a long period of time.

A lot of "collectors" threw out their desired and highly collectible pieces far below their cost price.

So, be patient, work harder, save more money and wait for the "right" time to come.



For those in Euroland the New York auctions will be very
03/17/2008 - 15:38

interesting to follow because of the never ending USD.

In terms of new and contemporary pieces there is an obvious trend of Europeans buying in the US and Asia and this will probably continue

When will the next New York auctions take place ? (nt)
03/17/2008 - 18:31


Re: When will the next New York auctions take place ? (nt)
03/17/2008 - 18:38

April 23: Sotheby's

April 24: Christie's

June 18: Antiquorum

Could you post some VC Items? (nt)
03/18/2008 - 09:41


LN what have I been doing for the past year? :-) (nt)
03/18/2008 - 09:49


got to admit, an excellent job posting VC items :-) (nt)
03/18/2008 - 10:33

Yes, guys
03/17/2008 - 23:00

as you can see, it's the watches with an & that keeps the best values

LOL !!


the last three pieces are the most interesting...
03/18/2008 - 10:38

Still I think the Pink Cioccolatone is the most beautiful. Had I not had the Toledo PT I would have bid for it - it is IMHO the most iconic VC model ever.

Even with a calibre 1019 !
03/18/2008 - 19:18

Not the best of V&C's movements of the era.

There were also several "did not sell" items.
03/18/2008 - 11:19

It would appear that the desirable is very desirable, but not everything (not even every VC) is desirable. I would note that a number of the unsold pieces had estimates that seemed unreasonably high, so they presumably had unrealistic reserves.