Time is money: €349,000 watch sells at Cork Jeweller

One stylish Irishman will be winding forward a very special watch this weekend — one costing almost twice as much as an average house.

The watch was sold for a staggering €349,000 at Keane’s Jewellers in Cork and will remain in store until it is collected later this week.

The timepiece is a Patek Philippe Grand Complication Celestial watch — known simply as “The Celestial”.

While these rare watches are made from solid 18ct white gold, set with more than 5.5ct of diamonds and secured with an alligator strap and a sapphire-crystal case back, part of the monumental cost stems from the fact each one takes a painstaking 18 months to make.

Time is money: €349,000 watch sells at Cork Jeweller

“Patek Philippe is one of the world’s most exclusive watch brands. The Swiss company boasts a long tradition of producing the finest timepieces and this is no exception. It is truly a beautiful piece of engineering, combining the beauty of diamonds with the precision mechanics of a grand complication movement, our customer was over the moon,” said Patrick Keane, who sold the watch a few days ago.

“All I will say is you never own a Patek Philippe, you just mind it for the next generation.”

The collection has a loyal following worldwide and, though this Patek sale was to a fellow countryman, the majority come from overseas, with collectors aware of where a model is on sale and prepared to travel half-way round the globe to secure it.

“We’ve been able to look internationally as well as locally with the Patek Philippe Collection and it’s fantastic for the local economy that we can attract customers of this calibre from overseas,” said Mr Keane.

“That trend is going to continue this year as we will be taking delivery of some highly exclusive collectors’ pieces over the coming months which were selected by our buyers at the Baselworld watch fair which took place last week in Basel, Switzerland.”

These special pieces are highly sought after worldwide — some of which will have a production run of fewer than 10 this year.

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