With Patek Philippe Certificate of Origin stamped A l'Emeraude Lausanne and dated 18 June 1981 and original fitted black presentation box. Furthermore delivered with Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with silvered dial and raised gold hour markers in 1981, but omitting the date of sale which interestingly has not been recorded in the firm's registers.
The present watch impresses by its overall very good, original overall condition. The case shows only very minimal wear and has not suffered from polishing. In fact, its proportions remain full, most evident to the beholders eye are the sharp edges of the lugs and the crisp gold marks. The charismatic dial reflects a great shine with no signs of any restoration and enhances the overall look of this fine wristwatch. The rarity is further enhanced by the original certificate.
Reference 2499, widely acknowledged to be one of the world's greatest watch models ever created, has without doubt significantly influenced the designs of many of the most renowned watchmakers. Introduced to the market in 1950, it replaced the legendary reference 1518, the world's first perpetual calendar wristwatch with chronograph made in series (see lots 62 and 132 in this auction).
Over a period of 35 years, reference 2499 was made in four series with a total production of only 349 pieces, the majority cased in yellow gold. The rarity of this model becomes evident when considering that on average only 9 watches left Patek Philippe's workbench each year.
Reference 2499 is generally divided into the following four series:
- first series: square chronograph buttons, applied Arabic numerals and tachymetre scale
- second series: round chronograph buttons, either applied baton or applied Arabic numerals and tachymetre scale
- third series: round chronograph buttons, applied baton numerals and outer seconds divisions
- fourth series: round chronograph buttons, applied baton numerals, outer seconds divisions and sapphire crystal
The model is illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, pp. 302 & 304.