One of the most desirable watches in the world is coming to auction at Bonhams London on June 20: a Rolex Oyster Sotto that’s had just one faithful owner for the past half century. Distinguished by its black and white Paul Newman dial – named after the iconic actor when he was pictured wearing such a Rolex in an Italian magazine shoot – it should fetch a cool £300,000 to £400,000.
Other highlights of the sale include a rare 1970s Rolex Daytona Desert Eagle (£150,000 to £200,000) in its original condition. Originally commissioned by the United Arab Emirates as a gift for high-ranking dignitaries, these watches have an eye-catching, stainless-steel dial decorated with a Hawk of Quraysh, the UAE coat of arms. They were only made in small numbers and are highly sought-after by keen horologists.
There will also be a unique private collection of Heuer watches on offer, which Bonhams says includes some of the finest examples ever to come under the hammer. They share a stylish, individual look: the 1970 Skipperara model (£20,000 to £30,000), for instance, has a colourful blue, green and coral enamel dial, while a 1974 Monaco Dark Lord (£20,000 to £30,000) has a distinctive all-black finish and square case that’s worthy of any Bond villain.