To the best of our knowledge, the present watch has never before been offered in public. Furthermore this is only the second time that a reference 3700/1 in yellow gold featuring the crest of Oman has been offered at auction. The other known example with movement no. 1'305'066 (seven numbers after the present watch), case no. 537'352 (four numbers after the present watch), was sold by Christie’s Geneva, on 11th November 2013, lot 149. Significantly and importantly both known watches were sold on the same day, 27th September 1978, thus confirming their presence in the same batch of watches sold to the Sultan.
The present Patek Philippe reference 3700/1 is not only amongst the rarest and most exclusive examples of a gold Nautilus ever offered at auction but is one of the scarcest of all Khanjar watches in existence. As scholarship and the appeal of collecting these ultra-exclusive watches continues to increase, the greatest rarities amongst them particularly from the 1970s era such as the present watch become ever more desirable. This solid gold Nautilus “Jumbo” is in an excellent state of preservation overall with original “Swiss sigma” dial exhibiting the first signs of mellow tropicalization found on some early and untouched Nautilus dials.
His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said
When Qaboos acceded to the throne on 23 July 1970 he declared that the country would no longer be known as Muscat and Oman, but would change its name to "the Sultanate of Oman". The aim of which was to show political unity and use the country’s oil revenue for modernization. There were few signs of the modern world when Qaboos took power and established an absolute monarchy, this means that all power is concentrated in the Sultan whose authority is unquestioned and who governs the country at every level of government.
Stability came to Oman only after the end of the Dhofar rebellion in 1976 with the help of Iranian, Jordanian and British forces. It was during this period that Sultan Qaboos was ordering watches from Patek Philippe, Rolex and Audemars Piguet via Asprey in London who, having direct access to him, coordinated the commissions and supplied the final purchases. Naturally these special watches were personalized with Oman’s “Khanjar” emblem making them very special and highly prized gifts for those lucky enough to receive them.