With Patek Philippe Certificate of Origin, original sales tag, presentation box and outer packaging, plastic wallet, sales tag, a set of original spare parts for the perpetual calendar work, month and day disks in English, gold crown with Calatrava cross, one gold chronograph button with seal spring, one main spring, one large gold crown with Calatrava cross and stem, sapphire crystal, leather strap and two gold spring bars. Furthermore delivered with contemporary brochure "Montres compliquées", technical data sheet for the perpetual calendar, copy of Patek Philippe's telex dated 13 October 1983 confirming that the present watch was sold to Franco Gobbi in Milan on 27 October 1980, copy of Patek Philippe's "Service Fournitures" invoice dated 3 September 1986 for two gold crowns, one sapphire crystal and two main springs for ref. 2499/100. The Extract from the Archives confirms production of this watch with silvered dial and yellow gold indexes in 1980 and its sale on 27 October 1980.
Consigned by its original owner, an important private collector, the watch offered here for sale is undeniably one of the very best and certainly the most complete example of the celebrated reference 2499/100 to ever be offered at auction. Since its acquisition nearly 35 years ago it has been safely locked away and is preserved in absolutely immaculate, "new old stock" condition. The highly charismatic, uniform bronze-coloured oxidation to the case and buckle, an infallible sign for watches having remained untouched during many years, impressively underline the "sleeping beauty" aspect.
The superbly full and sharp case proportions display in a most impressive manner how a reference 2499/100 left Patek Philippe's factory, including the immaculate condition the original protective sticker to the case back, showing the Calatrava crown. The dial has equally never been touched and is in as pristine condition as the case.
The impressive array of accessories delivered with this extraordinary timepiece, in addition to the original certificate, sales tag, box, period brochure and technical data sheet, further enhance its appeal: its meticulous owner wishing to have key watch parts of the period for his treasure purchased not only a spare leather bracelet, sapphire crystal, gold crowns, month and date disks, full set of spare parts for the perpetual calendar work but most notably also a spare dial made by the celebrated Fabrique de Cadrans Stern Frères. This dial is offered as the succeeding lot 308A in this auction.
These brand new, original Patek Philippe accessories, all rarities by themselves and delights to the collector's heart, further enhance the appeal of the present watch.
Consigned by its first owner, preserved in "new old stock" condition and offered with a wide array of original Patek Philippe accessories and parts, this reference 2499/100 represents one of the exceedingly scarce opportunities to acquire a genuine horological treasure.
Reference 2499, widely acknowledged 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.
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 tachometer scale
- second series: round chronograph buttons, either applied baton or applied Arabic numerals and tachometer scale
- third series: round chronograph buttons, applied baton numerals and outer seconds divisions
- fourth series, the present watch: 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, and Patek Philippe Museum - Patek Philippe Watches Vol. I, pp. 306-307.