OPEN FOR BIDDING 12– 19 NOVEMBER 2018
London, 12 November 2018 - This November, Sotheby’s will host an exclusive online sale of three unique prototypes from the luxury Italian watchmaker Panerai. Open for bidding from 12 until 19 November, the “Panerai: the Prototypes” sale coincides with the first anniversary of the watchmaker’s flagship store on New Bond Street. The sale follows the success of the 2017 online auction collaboration between Panerai and Sotheby’s in which a bronze Luminor Submersible watch sold for five times its low estimate.
Laurence Nicolas, Head of Sotheby’s Global Jewelry & Watches Divisions, commented: “For 274 years Sotheby’s has presented collectors with opportunities to purchase some of the rarest and finest objects in the world. Watch prototypes are such treasured pieces, for they not only tell the story of a brand but also shed light on the history of horology. Never before has Panerai allowed collectors to acquire prototypes and we are thrilled to partner with them again this year in this innovative online auction format.”
“We are thrilled to offer these unique pieces in auction, says Jean-Marc Pontroué, Panerai CEO. Our R&D team works relentlessly to design and create new models that encompass the history of our brand with a determined look towards the future. With this special auction we are aiming to satisfy clients who look to differentiate themselves and value the utmost exclusivity. Sotheby’s is the perfect partner to amplify this new initiative and we look forward to meeting these clients to introduce them to the world of Panerai”.
Leading the sale is the exclusive prototype for the yet-to-be-released Lab-ID, reflecting the apex of Panerai’s technical virtuosity. Combining traditional horology with cutting edge technology, the Lab-ID renders the classic Luminor 1950 with the power of carbon. 50 watches will be available at retail, but this prototype is the first and only model to be available before the worldwide release — an unparalleled opportunity to acquire a ground-breaking piece of horological design (est. £40,000-60,000).
Also on offer is the prototype for one of Panerai’s rarest and most coveted watches: The Mare Nostrum. Developed for Italian Naval officers in the 1940s, the watch never made it into production. Where modern Mare Nostrums have seen blue, brown or black dials, this prototype for the PAM00300 limited-edition released in 2010, is the sole model to feature the original olive-green dial and fabric strap. An icon of Panerai’s maritime roots, bolstered by modern innovations, this is a collectible of singular rarity (est. £20,000-30,000).
Closing the sale is an exceptional riff on the Radiomir Firenze, one of Panerai’s most emblematic models. A tribute to the brand’s Florentine heritage, this prototype eventually became the PAM00672, a limited edition of 99 pieces released in 2016. This prototype is distinguished from the eventual retail model by the rare ‘California’ dial and features a matte brushed-steel case (est. £20,000-30,000).
The sale is now open for bidding here
or via the Sotheby’s App on iOS and Android.
The watches will be on view in Sotheby’s New Bond Street galleries from 12 to 14 November.