Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST, Stainless Steel

£120,000
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This reference 15305* presents one of the most contemporary looking and striking incarnations of the iconic Royal Oak, with a modern approach to skeletonisation and versatile stainless-steel case.

ORIGINS OF THE ROYAL OAK

On the eve of Basel’s 1971 fair, Gerald Genta was tasked with the creation of an “unprecedented steel watch" – his night's work, today considered one of the masterpieces of his career. Audemars Piguet managing director of the time, Georges Golay, contacted Mr. Genta for help in designing a totally new, steel, waterproof sports watch, understanding that the waterproof technology would require an innovative strategy. Gerald Genta’s inspiration for the iconic Royal Oak architecture was to replicate the shape of the scaphander diving helmet on the watch case, complete with eight screws and the joint visible on the cases’ exterior. As Mr. Genta recounts: “I was given the ‘green light’ straight away to begin work on the prototype. I completed the prototype myself within a year. In 1970, I designed the watch. And it took one more year before industrial production, which finally came about in 1972”.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches

Intriguingly, prototypes for the Royal Oak are said to have been initially manufactured from white gold, as the softer material was easier to sculpt and manipulate the varying degree of angular, brushed and polished surfaces.

What is certain is that the discontinuation of the reference marked the end of one of the first reinterpretations of the original Nautilus design. First commercialised as a more appealing – and expensive – alternative to the Nautilus 3700, the mid-size 3800 has come to exist in all sorts of intriguing configurations over the years. In more recent times, as it has been increasingly discovered by collectors, this appreciation has grown.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 15305ST Stainless Steel A Collected Man London Buy Rare Watches