11.10.2017 - News

The Biannual ‘Only Watch’ Charity Auction Returns To Geneva

The watchmaking capital of the world is getting ready to wind down for the festive season after a busy year accommodating numerous lavish auctions. However, this coming weekend is an especially significant and busy time for watchmakers and collectors in Geneva, as the biannual ‘Only Watch’ charity auction is taking place at the Four Seasons Hotel. For those of you who do not know, the event is a unique wristwatch sale whereby a number of luxury watch brands come together to donate one very special and original timepiece that will be sold at auction, to help the organisers, Association Monegasque Contre les Myopathies (AMM), raise money for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy research.

Credit: Only Watch

The world famous philanthropic event has been a huge success since its conception in 2005. Luc Pettavino, the president of AMM and mastermind behind the Only Watch auction, thought of the concept after co-founding the AMM charity in 2001, following the discovery that his son, Paul, who has sadly since passed away at the age of 21, suffered from the condition.

Since then, Pettavino has been on a mission to raise money and help find a cure for the debilitating genetic disorder, which is characterised by progressive muscle degeneration and weakness, by generating a number of other auction concepts like the Project Joconde, Adam & Eve, Only One Seasons 1 & 2, Hermès Vintage & Rare Wines (for Mission Enfance).

Credit: Revolution

Credit: Only Watch (a taster of the incredible watch designs that are up for auction this weekend)

This year, there will be 49 one-of-a-kind luxury timepieces up for auction, which in total amounts to an impressive $4 million. Over the years, the Only Watch charity auction has raised an incredible €25 million, all of which (excluding a 1% administration running fee) has gone directly to funding research labs that are currently exploring Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, to help find a cure.

Pettavino stated that the success of the auction is purely down to the generosity of watch brands, attendees and organisers; and so the lucky bidders who succeed in acquiring one of these exquisite timepieces, will also receive an invite from the specific watch brand, to attend an exclusive upcoming event related to the speciality of one of their brand ambassadors (e.g. Formula 1, film festival, fashion shows and more).

Credit: Formula 1 (experience day at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix for the purchaser of  the Bell & Ross timepiece)

Credit: David Ross/ Getty Images (experience day: meet and greet with Usain Bolt for the purchaser of Hublot’s timepiece)

Private collectors everywhere should be extremely excited about the upcoming auction, because this year’s collection is more diverse, inventive and superb than ever before. One of our personal favourites is Hublot’s Big Bang Unico Sapphire Usain Bolt. The most striking features of the timepiece are its majestic green and gold skeleton dial, and the incredible, futuristic looking transparent strap. Hublot has certainly pushed the boat out this year with its extraordinarily unique and contemporary design that was inspired by the fastest man on earth’s speed, jamaican heritage and Olympic gold medal achievements.

Credit: Only Watch

Credit: Only Watch

The Only Watch charity auction is the perfect event for passionate horologists who are keen to collect extremely rare, unique and original timepieces that cannot be sourced elsewhere. Some of the biggest brands in the watch industry that have spent hundreds of hours designing, crafting and perfecting a wristwatch for this years charity auction include, Audemars Piguet, Bovet, Chanel, Hublot, Montblanc, MB & F, Piaget, Tag Heuer and many more.

For a closer look at all the unique timepieces up for auction this year, click here, and you’ll be directed to Christie’s official auction page. If you fancy reading more about the stories and work behind the event, click here, and you’ll be directed to the official Only Watch homepage.