Antiquorum, Hong Kong, 28 June 2014
Sold for HK$1,830,000 (£138,254)
Back in the glorious days of noughties watchmaking excess, when the super-rich seemed to have an insatiable appetite for truly absurd timepieces, Girard-Perregaux pulled the wraps off its delightfully preposterous Vintage 1945 Jackpot Tourbillon at the SIHH.
As the name suggests, it was equipped with its very own fully functional slot machine mechanism operated by a tiny “one armed bandit” handle on the right side of the case. Pulling the lever set the three wheels spinning and, as they drew to a halt, each one activated a striking mechanism to sound a tiny gong.
With five different symbols on each wheel, there was a one in 25 chance of getting a matching row – the prize for which was not a spewing of minuscule coinage, just a mild feeling of satisfaction. When new in 2007, the Jackpot cost £317,000…