An Omega timepiece belonging to Elvis Presley has been sold for $1.8 million, the highest price every paid for a watch made by the company.
At the same Phillips auction in Geneva, a 1958 Omega Speedmaster with a pre-sale estimate of $80,000 to $140,000 went under the hammer for $408,500.
The sales establish Omega as one of the most desirable brands in the increasingly heated market for rare vintage watches, and burnish the already shining reputation of Phillips as the auction house that commands the highest prices for timepieces with peerless back stories. A Rolex Daytona owned by Paul Newman sold for $17.8 million last year.
Phillips described the Elvis Omega as the “most historically significant Elvis Presley-owned watch to ever appear on the market.” The 18ct white gold wristwatch was presented to the artist by RCA Records in February 1961, at a charity luncheon and concert to celebrate his 75 million records sold worldwide.
The 33 mm timepiece houses a manually-wound Omega calibre 510, and features 44 brilliant cut diamonds surrounding the bezel.
The caseback is engraved with the words: “To Elvis, 75 Million Records, RCA Victor, 12-25-60.”