Back in 1933, the single most important watch ever built was engineered for a quiet millionaire collector named Henry Graves. It took over eight years and the most advanced horological techniques to create the multifunction masterpiece. Decades later, when the ultra-rare innovation was auctioned off in 1999, it sold for the record price of $11m and in recent years has been on display in a Geneva museum.
However, the watch recently returned to the auction block selling at a new record price of $24,128,000 to an anonymous bidder. Will this masterpiece slip away into a private collection only to be enjoyed by the privileged few? We believe that a classic like this should be available to true watch aficionados, so Stauer replicated the Graves design in the limited edition Stauer Graves ’33 Wristwatch.
The antique enameled face and Breguet hands are inspired by the original. But the real beauty of this watch is on the inside. Stauer replicated an extremely complicated automatic movement with 27 jewels and seven hands. There are 210 individual parts that are assembled entirely by hand and then tested for over 15 days on Swiss calibrators to ensure accuracy. Each Stauer Graves ‘33 watch is then re-inspected in the United States upon its arrival.
What makes rare watches rare? Business Week stated it best... “It’s the complications that can have the biggest impact on price.” (July, 2003). The four interior complications on our Graves watch display the month, day and date, while the 24-hour clock graphically depicts the sun and the moon. The innovative engine for this timepiece is powered by the movement of the body as the automatic rotor winds the mainspring. It never needs batteries and never needs to be manually wound. The precision-crafted gears are “lubricated” by 27 rubies that give the hands a smooth sweeping movement.
We’ve done the unthinkable. Not only have we emulated this stunning watch of the 1930s but we’ve been able to build this luxury timepiece for a spectacular price. Many fine 27-jewel automatics on the market today are priced well over $2,000 dollars, but you can enter the rarified world of fine watch collecting for much less. You can now wear a millionaire’s watch but still keep your millions in your vest pocket. Fits wrists 6 ½"–9".