Those who have been to Vicenza Expo Center in recent days could not have failed to notice an object of desire in the middle of the entrance hall: a sugar-paper Dino Ferrari. One of the most valuable pieces belonging to a VO Vintage exhibitor, Vintage Watches & Cars by Andrea Foffi. Making his second appearance at Vicenzaoro, Foffi can be called a regular, displaying 28 pieces from his rare and prestigious Omega Speedmaster collection on this international “marketplace”.
Andrea, tell us about your Speed-master world...
These 28 pieces are the most emblematic of the 70 illustrated in the book dedicated to the collection and their common denominator is that they are all for “space use”. Speedmasters do, in fact, differ in their intended use. For example, there are also Racing Speedmasters for racing. However, these were chosen by Nasa crews for lunar expeditions in the 1960s. I am proud to say that Omega, which collaborated on the set-up with a series of themed gadgets and complimented us on the pieces, has also been here during these days. There are some very rare ones, including the “zero-zero” specimen of 5 out of 50, in full pavé platinum with diamond baguettes, made in 1995 for the 25th anniversary of the moon landing. The other 45 included 5 watches without diamonds and 40 with leather straps.
How quickly and how do you build up such an important collection?
I've been in this profession since 1996 and the Speedmaster has always been one of my favorites, along with the mirror-polished pieces. I can therefore say that it has taken more than 25 years. How and where do I get certain pieces? From private individuals and at auctions, it always depends on the model. Among the rarest specimens, I negotiated for a Patek Philippe 1518 and a 2499.
The most sought-after piece?
A diamond Rolex Daytona 6270, impossible to find because only 20 pieces were made in 1980. It was already highly-coveted at the time and is now truly a watch for a select few. Its estimated value at auctions is around two and a half million.