An “exceptionally rare” Patek Philippe watch owned by Eric Clapton has sold at auction for more than £2.2 million.
The 1987 timepiece, one of just two made, was the star attraction at the Christie’s sale in Geneva.
It created a bidding frenzy with ten people from around the world bidding for the watch, a perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch, with moon phases.
The hammer eventually went down at £2.28 million – with an unnamed Asian man winning the auction with a telephone bid.
A spokesperson for Christie’s said: “The Eric Clapton Patek Philippe is one of the most loved watches and one of only two made in platinum in 1987.
“It is the only one in private hands which made a difference and then there is the provenance.
“In the watch collecting world, rarity counts for everything.”
The watch, which Clapton bought privately ten-years ago, has only been sold at auction once previously – selling for $250,000 in 1989.
Rock star Clapton, nicknamed Slowhand, is putting the proceeds from the sale into his Crossroads Centre drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Antigua.
However, the watch wasn’t the most expensive lot – with another platinum chronograph Patek Philippe made in 1952 for US collector J.B Champion – selling for £2.5 million.
In total, 96 per cent of the 315 lots sold, with sales totalling a staggering £18 million.
Aurel Bacs, international head of Christie’s Watch Department, said the seven-hour marathon auction had welcomed 500 registrants from around the world.
He added: “Christie’s auction of Important Watches in Geneva performed extremely well, demonstrating great consistency at all levels in terms of watches, prices and clients.
“In a broad, healthy and ever growing market, where buyers demand expertise and scholarship, we offered once again the finest selection of watches and wristwatches.
“Collectors, public and private museums, the trade and also an investment watch fund, battled out the bidding for the best watches seen at auction this season, reconfirming Christie’s market leadership in every horological category.”
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