“Howard Hughes” Patek Philippe Ref 1463 Sells Amid Controversy

“Lot 385″ Sold On a Story….Howard Hughes Turns In His Grave…




…Unfortunately the purchaser of this watch remains undocumented and sales records of this transaction may not be available…” (page 266, Christie’s June 16 Auction catalogue)

It is unfortunate that serious questions regarding the provenance of this watch were posed to Christie’s, yet Christie’s did not answer them.  In my view, unless and until these questions are properly answered by Christie’s, this watch’s provenance, namely its purported association with the late Howard Hughes, should be considered highly doubtful.


Perpetuelle’s additional, in-depth coverage of this watch can be seen here:

  1. The Curious Case of the “Howard Hughes” Patek Philippe Ref 1463, Continued (June 15, 2010)
  2. The Curious Case of the “Howard Hughes” Patek Philippe Ref 1463 (June 14, 2010)
  3. Howard Hughes Patek Philippe Ref. 1463 Up At Auction (June 3, 2010)
  • Blake

    Not long ago I recall a historic Audi (Auto-Union) racer that was pulled from auction (by Christie’s) due to some doubts surfacing over the correct chassis number and its true significance. It seems that there were more than enough questions regarding this particular piece to justify the hold of the auction in the same manner as the Audi. Really incredible that the auction ran through and sold for a substantial amount of money even in light of these questions.

    I wonder if the new owner was made aware of these discrepancies prior to bidding and furthermore, (if they indeed had not been informed) if the watch turns out to be of false origins, would they have a legitimate claim against Christie’s?

    Nice sleuthing work here Kyle…

  • http://blog.perpetuelle.com Kyle

    Thanks for the comments, Blake. As to whether or not the new owner was made aware of the discrepancies — I HIGHLY DOUBT IT! If you were made aware of these discrepancies, would you drop $255,000 on a watch? 😉 I don’t know about your “claim” question.

    Christie’s tried to sweep Perpetuelle under the rug from the moment I started asking questions. They refused to take my phone calls (“please submit your questions via e-mail…”) and issued pitiful, empty statements in response.

    Its pathetic behavior fundamentally changed my view of this company — for the worse.


  • David

    Christies have unquestionably behaved in a shabby manner.

    I feel that the new owner, should he become aware of this controversy, would have a valid case to make a claim against Christies.

    Clearly Christies were fully aware of the doubt surrounding the sellers claim, and went ahead regardless without making potential purchasers aware of the doubt.

    An unpleasant episode.

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