There are a few independent watchmakers as influential and widely regarded as Phillippe Dufour and this has been proven yet again. A Grande et Petite Sonnerie watch designed by the greatest living watchmaker has sold for a record-shattering $7.33 million through London-based dealer, A Collected Man.
This sale price is not as much as that of the rare Patek Philippe with Eurasian map dial that auctioned for a record-breaking 7.8m in May this year, but it is definitely a new world record for independent watchmakers. For that sale price, it is also amid the top 10 costliest watches.
The grand timepiece
Dufour is no ordinary watchmaker. He is known for painstakingly handcrafting every watch himself. This unique watch that set the new record is in itself handmade by the master craftsman and represents the absolute pinnacle of Dufour’s craftsmanship.
Philippe Dufour Grande et Petite Sonnerie that sold for $7.33 is one of only eight such watches ever made. The first of the batch was made for the Sultan of Brunei in 1995. This particular watch in the third watch amid the eight made – every piece of the watch is handmade by Dufour – and it was made over nine months.
About the watch
An epitome of mechanical precision and melodic beauty, the Grande et Petite Sonnerie is an intricate Minute Repeater. The watch is made to chime on the hour and at each quarter without repeating the hour or also repeating the hour. The user can toggle between the options using a selector on watch case. Interestingly, the pusher in the Dufour watch’s crown can also be used to activate a minute repeater, which strikes the hours, quarters and minutes on-demand.
This Philippe Dufour Grande et Petite Sonnerie Rose Gold case watch measures 39mm in diameter. Within the case is a white enamel dial which is graced with steel hands, Roman numerals, minute track and small seconds hand all in blue color. The watch has a hinged caseback that hides within a handmade mechanical movement.