A vintage piece by luxury watchmaker Audermars Piguet is going on auction at Christie's, with the bidding to begin on April 24.
With an estimated value of $30,000 to $50,000, the Maktoum Dial timepiece is part of the Swiss watchmaker's Royal Oak collection, known for its sleek octagonal bezel and intricate tapisserie dial.
It was designed by Jacqueline Dimier and is one of the only 2,130 yellow gold pieces manufactured between 1977 and 1988.
The 35mm watch features the signature of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, on the top half of the dial. The bottom half shows the Audemars Piguet script.
When the watch was made during the 1980s, Sheikh Mohammed was serving as the country's minister of defence. The timepiece will be sold with its Audemars Piguet extract.
“Sheikh Mohammed’s name has appeared on vintage Rolex wristwatches in the past, but we have rarely come across his signature on vintage Audemars Piguet models,” said Christie's.
The auction house said such luxury wristwatches, which are typically used for state gifts, are considered "Arabic dials” within collectors' circles.
In 2018, a Patek Philippe clock that featured Sheikh Mohammed's signature also went on sale. The rectangular gilt brass clock also sported an engraving of the UAE crest.
The Maktoum Dial piece is only one of the 136 luxury watches to be auctioned at Christie’s Watches Online: The Dubai Edit, which will continue until May 4.
Headlining the sale is a Richard Mille 69, one of only 30 pieces ever made, with an estimated value of $800,000 to $1.2 million.
Patek Philippe and Rolex are leading the auction's vintage watch selection, while other pieces from brands such as FP Journe, MB &, De Bethune and Ludovic Ballouard are also part of the famed biannual sale.
The auction house is displaying all the watches at its gallery at the Dubai International Financial Centre during the 10-day auction, from 10am to 7pm.