First up, the best-performing watch of the bunch – and honestly, for me, one of the best replica watches of the auction season. Not only is it “historically important,” as auction houses are fond of saying, but this watch also just looks damn good. Let’s start with the story, since that’s what turned an otherwise humble cheap fake Rolex pre-Explorer ref. 6298 into a CHF 289,800 hunk of steel.
This Swiss fake Rolex belonged to Jürg Marmet, a Swiss engineer who also happened to be quite the mountaineer in his younger years. In 1953, Marmet was part of an expedition to Canada’s Baffin Island – look way up at the top of the map to find it – an expedition 1:1 replica Rolex UK happened to sponsor, so he got this watch, engraved “Baffinland” on the caseback. Turns out Marmet was just getting started when he made the journey to Baffin Island: In 1956, he was tapped for a Swiss expedition to summit Everest – three years after Norgay and Hillary conquered the peak, it was finally time for the Swiss to get another crack at it (they came just short in 1952; more on that expedition in a minute).
This time, the Swiss made it, and Marmet became just the third person to summit Everest, after Norgay and Hillary. For good measure, the expedition was also the first to summit Lhotse on the way up to Everest, the fourth-tallest peak in the world. As I said, whether a particular super clone watch was actually on someone’s wrist at the summit can lead to nearly endless debate, but what can’t be debated is that this watch went through the absolute ringer with Marmet, from Baffin Island to Lhoste to Everest.
According to Christie’s, the 6298 came from Marmet’s family, and it looks absolutely gorgeous and honest. The dial’s taken on that warm, sand-colored patina you love to see, and the rest of the aaa quality replica Rolex UK looks like it’s got some scratches and nicks on it. And when you get that perfect storm of condition and original provenance, you get a big result, probably as high as you’ll see for a watch that, on the outside, seems like an unassuming, time-only 36mm Swiss movement fake Rolex.