Dr Crott, May 6 2017
Sold for €868,000
They are the stuff of pawnbrokers’ dreams, lottery winners’ shopping lists and sophisticats’ nightmares – but nothing speaks of the ‘loadsamoney’ era of the 1980s better than a bejewelled Rolex, and preferably a yellow gold Cosmograph Daytona.
Gem-set Rolex watches abound, but many have been blinged-up with aftermarket stones set with various, often dubious levels of professionalism. But, regardless of your opinion of paved watches, few could deny the workmanship evident in the factory-made daddy of them all, the Cosmograph Daytona reference 6270.
Unveiled at the Basel watch show in 1984 with a price tag of around CHF70,000, it’s thought that a mere eight examples of the 6270 were ever made – and all of them at the behest of Qaboos Bin Said, the Sultan of Oman. The whereabouts of five are known today, and the last time one appeared at auction was at Christie’s in 2014 when the watch carrying the serial number immediately following the Dr Crott example realised slightly more than $1 million which, at the exchange rate of the time, equated to €742,000.
The Cosmograph 6263’s familiar – and practical – engraved bezel is replaced on the 6270 variant with no fewer than 28 baguette-cut diamonds, while the dial is smothered in 240 diamonds and nine sapphires (for the indexes), with the three sub-dials being finished in a deep blue, almost purple hue. Inside the watch, meanwhile, nestles the favoured Calibre 727 hand-wound movement.
The superb, virtually unworn condition of this example saw it set a new auction record for the reference which, given its rarity, is unlikely to be broken for quite some time.