British auction house Christie’s will display former King of Egypt and the Sudan Farouk the First’s personalized Patek Philippe “Reference 1518” watch in its Dubai watch auction in March. The watch already has a pre-sale estimate of $400,000 to $800,000.
Farouk, who was the penultimate King of Egypt and the Sudan, reigned for 16 years and was a renowned collector of fine watches. Farouk’s reign ended when we was overthrown during the Egyptian Revolution of 1952.
Timepiece designers and manufacturers Patek Philippe launched this particular model in 1941, and it is estimated that only 281 pieces were created. The “Reference 1518″ model is the first perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch produced in series by any watch company. The watch’s back case is engraved with the Royal Crown of Egypt, with its star and half moon and the letter “F”.
“King Farouk’s Patek Phillipe Reference 1518 is a crowning element of Christie’s Dubai watch sale next month – it is a storied piece with provenance from the Middle Eastern region and is already attracting tremendous interest from the region and beyond,” said Remy Julia, head of watches for Christie’s Middle East, India, and Africa.“Having previously found a home for this watch at auction several years ago, Christie’s is delighted to be trusted again to offer King Farouk’s timepiece to a new generation of collectors.”
There has been increased interest in vintage watch collecting in the Middle East in recent years. Christie’s announced total global sales increased 26% in 2017 to £5.1 billion, with overall sales in Europe and the Middle East totalling £1.5 billion, up 16%.