What began in July and ends next week onl August 17th in Vacheron Constantin’s New York City boutique is an incredible and unusual event: the showing off 11 exclusive vintage timepieces that have been hand-selected and fully refurbished by the brand — and every one is for sale.The exhibition and sale is the result of a new initiative by the brand to offer refurbished pre-owned timepieces – complete with a warranty – to Vacheron Constantin watch lovers. The Les Collectionneurs New York pieces are just a portion of the complete collection, which is traveling around the world, with different watches being shown in different cities. In total, the collection consists of about 60 to 70 pieces,w it more being continually added. This may well mark the first time a haute horology brand has actively sought out so many vintage timepieces, reconditioned them and re-sold them. According to Vacheron Constantin, each watch was hand-picked b the brand’s Heritage team from private collections, purchased at auction or taken from the brand’s own Heritage Department. We wrote about this collection not too long ago on our Perfect Timing column on Forbes.com. Now we bring you a look at these 11 watches, which may or may not still be available.
According to Christian Selmoni, Vacheron Constantin’s Heritage and Style Director, the in the process of searching and finding vintage Vacheron Constantin timepieces took some time. “We look for both Les Collectionneurs watches and watches for our own private collection. Sometimes we have to arbitrate whether a timepiece should be kept for our private collection or offered to the public through Les Collectionneurs. Finally, as our private collection isn’t static but evolves, we might decide to offer a timepiece that is currently part of our own collection through Les Collectionneurs.”
Each watch is fully restored over a several-month period by Vacheron Constantin’s heritage specialists at the workshops in Geneva, and each is presented with a Certificate of Authenticity and a two-year Manufacture warranty The collection includes an array of exciting watches that showcase the brand’s achievements over the past century, with watches that include pocket and wrist watches, chronographs and calendars from the 20th century. The 11 pieces put up for sale in New York include pocket watches and wristwatches dating from 1928 to 1993. Highlights — until sold — include a repeater pocket watch from 1928 ($80,500), a rare yellow gold wristwatch repeater from 1951 ($362,000) and a 1993 perpetual calendar repeater ($412,000). Three are also some very special chronographs from 1941 and 1942 that retails from $42,500 to $44,300, and some 1950’s watches, including a square and rectangular piece, that will sell for between $12,800 and $20,800. The key here: hurry! These are one of a kind watches that when sold, are gone.