If you’re a recurring reader of MONOCHROME or simply if you’re a watch enthusiast, you can’t have missed the piece of news that dropped last Monday. Indeed, Patek Philippe and its long-time retail partner Tiffany (now owned by LVMH… hence the logo on the back) released a highly discussed edition of the Nautilus 5711 with a Tiffany-Blue dial. Launched for the 170th anniversary of the NY-based jeweller, the watch will be produced in 170 pieces and is, without a doubt, the most sought-after timepiece of the hour. And you doubt it, the first of the models has just been auctioned by Phillips for a charity cause and it reached an INSANE price of USD 6,503,500 (with fees) making it by far the record for a Nautilus 5711.
Besides the rather questionable colour of the dial – which certainly makes sense for Tiffany but isn’t liked by all – the most debated element of this watch actually had to do with previous statements and the olive green model. Indeed, when Patek Philippe released the olive green edition, under the reference 5711/1A-014 in April this year, it was somehow announced to be the last of the Nautilus 5711, a watch produced for a year, intended to celebrate the end of this model launched in 2006 and a sequel to what’s coming in 2022. But, it wasn’t the last of the 5711. This title, against all odds, goes to this watch, the 5711/1A-018.
This Tiffany-Blue Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 is mostly differentiated by its dial, taking on the signature colour of the retailer. It is also featuring black-gold applied indexes, hands and date frame and a commemorative stamping on the back, with the LVMH logo – which was the cause of many jokes on social media. When the watch was released last Monday, it was also announced that the first model would be auctioned by Phillips during its New York watch auction with proceeds benefiting The Nature Conservancy, a global environmental organization.
Now, we all know the situation regarding the price of the Nautilus 5711. A classic blue dial version, a watch that retailed for about USD 30,000, is now worth well over USD 100,000 on the second-hand market. As for the current model (almost not) available, the olive green 5711/1A-014, the retail price is around USD 35,000 but the few available watches are listed well above the USD 400,000 mark, with an example recently auctioned at EUR 416,000 (with fees). Knowing that this version is not limited in numbers and that it will be produced for a full year, it is certainly a quite scarce but not excessively rare watch either. With this in mind, expectations for the auction of the present Tiffany-Blue 5711 were high… and it didn’t disappoint in this regard.
Just a few minutes ago, under the hammer of Phillips, the first appearing double-signed Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711/1A-018 Tiffany-Blue sold for USD 6,503,500… A mind-blowing record for the reference 5711, making it about 100 times its retail price. In a way, it’s a good thing, knowing the benefits of the sale will go to a charitable organization. But, in all honesty, it’s not reflecting the intrinsic value of this watch (which retails for USD 52,635) but only speculation around a watch that has become far more than just a timekeeping instrument, and is now an investment vehicle. Which is quite sad, to be frank.
The details on the lot can be seen here, at phillips.com.