Björn Borg - His love for the Rolex Day-Date

Every Rolex Tells a Story, Björn Borg (photo: Rolex)
Björn Rune Borg is the legendary tennis player from Stockholm, Sweden.  He was an unstoppable force on the world Tennis scene between 1974 and 1981 and became the first man in the Open Era to win 11 Gran Slam titles including 6 French Opens and 5 consecutive Wimbledon titles.  He won 3 year end championships and 15 Grand Prix Super Series titles. 

He owned the world #1 ranking in 1977-1980 and was runner up in 1975, 1976, and 1981.  He still owns 7 all-time records - demonstrating his dominance including a 92.7% win percentage at Wimbledon, 41 consecutive match wins (another record) and an 89.8% Major winning percentage which still stand today.
Borg after winning Wimbledon  Photo: Rolex

He had two major rivalries - early on with Jimmy Connors, and more famously later in his career with John McEnroe, with whom he created a life-long friendship.  He became maybe the first tennis rock star with his long hair and beard - hounded constantly by fame and press.  He retired at the young age of 26 at the top of his game after nearly missing taking home his 6th Wimbledon - making many to wonder how much magic he could have rendered in the years to come and how many more majors he could have won had he continued.

Borg helped change the way tennis would be played.  He had a powerful ground stroke with heavy top spin.  Yet his exceptional athleticism helped power his dominance, especially on grass courts.  He showed great grace under pressure and calm demeanor which earned him the nickname "Ice Man."

Rolex Day-Date 36 worn by Tennis Legend Björn Borg (photo: Rolex)
Borg stated that he loved the Green Rolex Day-Date, particularly because it came out on his birth year 1956 and that it represents his personality and what he stands for - greatness.  Years later he still funnels his greatness into his current and popular self-named fashion label.

This model is the Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 36mm in yellow gold with green dial on black leather shown in the photo. This is the most traditional size for the model, much smaller than today’s popular 40mm model. The original Day-Date introduced the President bracelet in 1956. However, the leather strap configuration is more tied to wristwatch models of that era. The combination of green and yellow gold is a nod to the watchmaker’s corporate colors. An aperture at 12 o’clock displays the day of the week spelled out completely, a design element that also originated on this iconic model.

The Day-Date 36 uses a calibre 3155 self-winding mechanical movement and is a certified Swiss chronometer.  The crystal is a scratch-resistant sapphire with a cyclops lens over the date.  It is water resistant to 330 feet.  It has a power reserve of approximately 48 hours.  

The 2017 Rolex Day-Date 36 (Reference #118138) is available in yellow gold with a green dial and either the cognac leather strap shown above or a green leather strap.
2017 Everose Gold Rolex Day-Date 36 (Reference #118135) 
It is also available in Everose gold with a black leather strap in a variety of dial color options, like the chocolate brown Day-Date 36 configuration (Reference #118135) shown above. Visit rolex.com to browse their entire collection of 2017 Day-Date configurations
 yellow gold Rolex Day-Date 36

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More Rolex Collector Recommendations from John Mayer

Rolex Submariner Reference 5513  Image: ABlogToWatch
John Mayer, famed musician, has 3 more recommendations for Rolex collectors.  The first to discuss today is the Rolex Submariner Reference 5513.  Also called the Matte Dial Submariner, the Rolex Submariner Reference 5513 was produced between 1962 and 1989.  Distinctive simplicity, without any date or small seconds functionality, this Rolex is extremely popular with resale prices that range from under $8k to upwards of $50,000 or more.  

The Rolex Submariner Reference 5513 has had several variations over the nearly 28 years of production.  These variations  (Meters First, Non-Serif/Serif Dials, Pre Comex, and Maxi Dials) are best analyzed by the dedicated site http://www.5513mattedial.com/About.html. 

This particular model can be submerged to an impressive 660 feet and has a stainless steel, 40 mm diameter and 13 mm thick case.  The durability of this Submariner is impressive. 

The movement is a non-chronometer-certified caliber 1520.  It has a black dial and bezel with off-white markers.  The bracelet is Oyster, and it has a lug width of 20 mm.  It does not have Sapphire Crystal, but it uses tritium luminous markers which creates interesting patinas on the markers as it ages.

Rolex "Pepsi" GMT Master Reference 1675
The next Rolex on the Mayer buy list is the Rolex GMT Master Reference 1675.  It is known as a Pepsi because of its stunning blue and red bezel with fat font.  This was produced between 1959 and 1980, one of the longest running Rolexes to be produced in history.  The earlier versions of this watch had a red 24 hour hand with a small triangle at the end.  In 1970 this changed to large red triangle at the end.

The bezel is metal for sturdiness and it is rotatable for time-lapse.  The two crown guards and screw down crown add further protection.  The movement is an automatic caliber 1575 with 26 jewels and a power reserve of 42 hours.  It uses acrylic crystal with a cyclops date viewer at 3 o'clock and a black gilt dial with glossy finish.  The GMT Master is waterproof up to 165 feet.  The Oyster Bracelet provides a solid and reliable compliment to this powerful and durable Rolex.

Rolex Explorer II Reference 16550 Black Photo: Woundforlife
The last recommendation Mayer makes in his buy list is a Rolex Explorer II Reference 16550 (Black Dial).  Although the white dial 16550 may have more value in the resale arena, Mayer prefers the black dial which has a black gloss dial with white gold hands and hour markers.  This may be partly because the cream dial versions had some production issues with the paint on the dial. 

If you find one which says Superlative Chronometer Official Certified" wording on it, you would have found a rare model with a premium value. It was produced only between 1985 and 1989.

It has a stainless steel bezel and a scratch resistant sapphire crystal with cyclops lens at 3 o'clock. The case is 40 mm and the dial is black with luminescent hour markers. It uses a caliber 3085 movement but has an independent hour hand to track a second timezone.  It has a waterproof screw down crown and it supports a depth of 300 meters.

John Mayer - Famous Rolex Collector

John Mayer is not only a famed musician, singer-songwriter, guitarist and musician, but an avid Rolex Collector
John Mayer is most famous for his exquisite musicianship and vocal prowess which has earned him a Grammy and millions of albums sold worldwide.  He is inspired by a wide range of music from country to blues to rock and beyond.  He has performed with many celebrity musicians including Maroon 5, Counting Crows, Sheryl Crow, and Keith Urban.  He has dated celebrities such as Jessica Simpson, Taylor Swift, Jennifer Aniston, Katy Perry, and Jennifer Love Hewitt. 

However, John has teamed up with Hodinkee to pen several articles on watch collecting - a long pastime of his.  He owns nearly 5 million dollars worth of watches in his collection, and he collects IWC and Panerai in addition to a long-time love for Rolex.

We know John Mayer has a Rare 6264 in gold with red "Daytona" in his extensive collection.
Rolex Daytona Ref 6264
This 6264 is the twin to the 6262. The model features the Valjoux caliber 727 movement and pump pushers. It's distinctive black acrylic bezel sets it apart from some of the earlier Daytonas.  The ones made in 1970 and 71 are extremely rare and have been fetching outrageous prices at auction.

The Rolex Daytona is one of the most sought after Rolex watches today.  New or old, they are extremely collectible.  The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona was introduced in 1963 and was designed for professional racecar drivers.  Initially the reliable chronograph and bezel with tachymetric scale allowed drivers to measure average speeds up to 200 kilometres or miles per hour.  Newer Daytonas measure up to 400 miles per hour.

The Daytona has an hour, minute and second hands.  It has a small seconds hand at 6 o'clock, a chronograph center hand, a 30 minute counter at 3 o'clock and a 12 hour counter at 9 o'clock.

Military Submariner. Image: Bobs Watches
John also owns a 5513/5517 Military Submariner.  These Rolex watches were originally made for the Royal Navy in the 1970's.  Only about 1200 MilSubs were ever made and they are in high demand since only a few hundred may be in original condition.

These MilSubs have a large T in a circle above the depth markings at six o'clock.  T refers to the use of tritium in the manufacturing. 

The hour, minute and seconds hands have sharp points and are often thought to be in the shape of swords.

The strap can easily be replaced with a quality 20 mm lug width replacement band such as one of these from Rubber B.

This watch is stunning with its black bezel and simplicity of design.  The nostalgia effect and rarity of these models make these extremely collectible.  However, it would take an expert to help determine whether some of the parts have been replaced from the original.  Many of the original 1200 units have been repaired, replaced and contain a variety of non-original parts.

Rolex Explorer I Ref 1016 - Image: Bob's Watches
John Mayer also recommended several Rolex buys under 8k which he is currently buying for his own collection and recommending to many other artists, rap stars and colleagues. 

The first Rolex on John Mayer's "Buy List" is the Rolex Explorer I Reference 1016 which could be called the "James Bond Rolex" since it was actually worn by famous author Ian Fleming, creator of 007, and mentioned in the original books.  It was worn by the first party to climb Mount Everest and was produced between 1963 and 1989.

The Rolex Explorer I Reference 1016 has a water resistance up to 300 feet and a screw down oyster case.  The simplicity of the black dial with slightly off-white numbers and markers is both stunning and exquisite.  The numerals 3, 6 and 9 represent the hour markers in those positions and are highly readable.   The initial movement was a 1560 caliber, but was replaced by the 1570.  The Reference 1016 is the longest running Explorer references in Rolex history.

Rolex Datejust Reference 1601 in 18k Yellow Gold
Next on Mayer's "Buy List" is the Rolex Datejust Reference 1601 in 18k Gold. This valuable collectable item has a 36mm case made out of solid 18k gold.  It has an Acrylic crystal glass with cyclops lens for viewing the date easily.  The Rolex crown appears at 12 o'clock and gold lugs appear for the other hours.

This model came with a president style gold plated link band which matches the gold case crown bezel and lugs.  This model was manufactured between 1960 and 1969.

Today with the rising price of gold, the value of this Gold Rolex is likely to rise.

We will cover the other three items on John Mayer's Buy List in the next article.



My Favorite New Rolex Daytona - Reference 116518 LN, Black with 18 ct Gold

New Rolex Cosmograph Daytona in 18 CT Gold
Let me just first say that I absolutely love this Rolex.  Although I love many of the new Rolexes that were released at Baselworld this year and certainly many of the classic Rolexes that came before, I think this might be my favorite Rolex to date.  Certainly it is on top of my holiday wish list.


The Rolex Daytona Reference 116518 LN comes with a 4130 Calibre mechanical chronograph and bidirectional self-winding mechanism, with power reserve up to 72 hours.  Besides the hour and minute hands it has a small seconds hand at 6 o'clock, a 30 minute counter at 3 o'clock and a 12 hour counter at 9'oclock. 

This 18 ct yellow gold timepiece has Chromalight  hands, 44 total rubies and PVD coating  to facilitate long-lasting luminescence.  The case is 40mm Oyster design with chronograph pushers.  The crystal is scratch-resistant sapphire, and the watch is waterproof to 330 feet. 

I personally prefer the Oysterflex bracelet to the metal options due to the comfort fit.  It is made with high-performance elastomer and has a Oysterlock folding safety clasp in 18 ct yellow gold.  And the yellow gold and black dial and black bracelet complement each other so well.  It is truly a gorgeous masterpiece. 

To illustrate the mastery of this design, take a look at this Daytona from the side view.  The Rolex Crown is embossed in the screw-down, triplock waterproof winding crown.  It is offset on either side by the chronograph pushers.  The workmanship of the design of this Rolex is exquisite.  The engraved Rolex name is placed within the gold inner dial, allowing you to see its unmistakable Rolex brand from any angle. 


This is truly a fantastic Daytona, and one of the most popular Rolex designs on the market today.  The Daytona brand has also been a very hot after market commodity fetching outstanding gains at auction many years later. 

This design is not over the top with Diamonds or other Gems.  So, this is a wearable sports watch which can be worn for play and even when you are dressed in your finest.  Tuxedo... no problem. 

The Most Interesting Rolex From Baselworld 2017

Rolex Yacht-Master 40 - 18 CT Everrose Gold Unveiled at Baselworld 2017
Baselworld 2018 is fast approaching.  It has a reduced schedule this year, by 2 days due to several smaller vendors pulling out from the Exhibit Hall.  However, it will still be jam packed with tremendous jewelry and watch designs, thousands of vendors and a media storm of at least 5000 journalists. 

Baselworld 2018 will happen from March 22nd through March 27th in Messe Basel, Switzerland.  At only roughly $150 a ticket for the whole week, it is a great deal for soRolex Yacht-Master 40 - 18 CT Everrose Goldmeone that wants to see the latest Rolexes and other priceless timepieces and jewelry in one place. 

To commemorate this highly anticipated event, we are going to look at one of the most interesting Rolex timepieces to come out of the 2017 Baselworld event. 

This Oyster Perpetual Rolex Yacht-Master 40 Reference 116695 SATS is set with 31 jewels, including multicolor sapphires, green tsavorites, and a triangular diamond at 12 o'clock. 

The waterproof oyster case supports a depth of 330 feet and is crafted from a solid block of 18 ct Everose Gold.  The winding crown is supported by a triple waterproofness system. 

The sapphire crystal is practically scratchproof, and it comes with a Cyclops lense at 3 o'clock to facilitate the readability of the date. 

The Yacht-Master 40 is equipped with a caliber 3135, self-winding mechanical movement system providing precise and reliable time and a power reserve up to 48 hours.  Its oscillator protects against magnetic fields, temperature variations and shock. 

The black dial is offset by Chromalight appliques surrounded by 18 ct pink gold, offering long-lasting luminescence in dark environments.  The bracelet is a black Oysterflex made of high-performance elastomer and has an Oysterlock folding safety clasp in 18 ct Everose gold.

I love the color of the black dial and white Chromalight appliques.  This watch, though, seems to precious to take diving, swimming or in other activities.  Although it is built to for an active lifestyle, I feel this gem of a watch is more for wearing out and catching the attention of anyone that glimpses its adornments.  The collectability of this watch will be enhanced by the solid pink gold design.  This would surely be the only piece of jewelry a man would need.


Should Rolex Develop a Digital Watch?

Fitbit Blaze tracker with PurePulse heart rate, connected GPS and on-screen workouts - $199.99
Fitbit took the world by storm with its ability to calculate number of steps, miles walked, heart rate and so much more.  Apple and Google have extended their respective phone features on their watches as well allowing you to see emails and text messages on your wrist without needing to reach for your phone or fumble through your purse.

This year we are seeing several new players to the digital watch forum.  Besides new versions of the Fitbit and Samsung, we are seeing Michael Kors, Movodo and even Tag Heuer get into the game with some impressive digital offerings of their own.

So, it begs the question of whether Rolex should get into the Digital Watch game or not?

Source: Tag Heuer - Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 - $2,200
Before, we answer the question, let's look at some of the features of the Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45.  To the right, it is pictured a Tag Heuer watch that is built with dual compatibility for Android 4.4+ and IOS 9+.  So, if you have an Android phone (such as Samsung) or an Apple phone, you are in business.  This watch has several built in sensors which will help track an increasing number of fitness, distance and many other features for you.

  • Accelerometer, gyroscope
  • Tilt detection
  • Microphone
  • Vibrations engine
  • Ambient light sensor
  • GPS 
  • NFC Payment
It is powered by an Intel Atom Processor Z34XX and has 512 MB of memory and 4 GB of storage. The touch display supports fingerprint recognition.  Resolution is a solid 400 x 400.  The case is 45 mm across and 13.75 mm thick.  It has a 1.39 inch screen.    

Since it is a sports watch, they outfitted it with a brown leather strap with a rubber lining.  With an approx pricetag of $4,000, the Tag Heuer certainly approaching the Rolex entry level pricing. 
Movado Connect for Android/IOS - $595

The benefits of digital watches are incredible today.  Firstly, the fitness aspect of these devices are excellent.  Many of these watches also submit information to health providers with monetary incentives for hitting daily goals such as walking 10,000 steps, or climbing 10 flights of stairs.  Tracking heart rate, miles walked, sleep patterns and more can give health professionals data that could help the wearer understand healthy habits and lifestyle options that could lead to better health.

Besides the health benefits, there are utility or infinite app-based add-ons that can make the digital watch very powerful.   Reading email and texts is a huge plus.  Listening to music or getting calendar alerts are big benefits.  Being able to change the clock face to fit your color preference or style preference or even the current set of activities is where the digital watch really starts to separate from the older mechanical technology.  

For example, say you go diving and you change to the diving options of the Submariner, but later in the day you could be driving your race car around a track and would rather have your watch shift to a Daytona timepiece.  That is all possible with digital.  

Samsung Gear S3 - $349.99
The fastest growing selling point for digital watch technology is payment option.  This is just in the early stages, but many restaurants and stores are beginning to accept payment via digital device so you could eventually just leave your wallet at home. Add to that, the fact that you could eventually do away with your physical wallet, and the growth of digital currency like BitCoin, this could become the hottest reason to invest in this technology.


So, does that put timeless Rolex technology into the Model T category of less than useful gadgets in today's age.  Not at all.  Rolex devices are more than fine jewelry.  With the auto winding technology, if you don't have power to charge your digital watch, the standard Rolex lineup would wipe the pavement with digital devices that are essentially dead without a daily (or more often) charge-up.  There are too many situations where a digital watch would be worth less than a rock paperweight if power were unavailable.  

One annoyance of digital is the time-out.  When you look at your Rolex timepiece it is on.  You don't have to tap it for it to turn on.  This saves you precious seconds and certainly doesn't require 2 hands.  Try driving a race car at 180 mph and then need to tap the watch dial to turn on the watch!  Digital also heats up when it is running for an extended period of time.  Have you ever tried to run your laptop on your actual lap?  

Michael Kors Access - $350
Imagine driving, boating or just doing anything active for a long period of time.   With a Rolex timepiece you don't have to worry about charging or feel tethered to the electrical outlet.  The problem is intensified during a power outage caused by some calamity (hurricane, tornado, bad power, or worse).   It is built to last and work doing the handful of features it provides without fail and with great precision.  Many digital watches are not built with the same rigorous standards to support deep diving depths such as the Rolex Submariner.

The value of a Rolex investment is also greater - with many Rolexes currently setting all time records for prices at auction.  

The chances of a defective part in a traditional Rolex is nearly non-existent compared to the potential problems that a digital timepiece might have.  This could cause a digital watch to diminish in value or even become worthless over time.  

As technology changes, will the digital watch be able to keep up 20, 50 or even 100 years from now?  Unlikely.  

Although a digital watch today might support Android 4+ or Iphone, what happens when the next best thing comes out or newer versions of those OS's?  Does the watch lose capability or connectivity?  How many 1st Generation Iphones are still in service?

And what about the electronic parts that are provided by Intel or other brands.  If you need a replacement processor, storage or memory in 2060 for your digital timepiece, will Intel manufacture that for you? For this reason, most digital watches could be considered disposable objects rather than heirlooms that could be handed down from father to son for generations.  That poses a huge challenge for Rolex, which produces timeless works of art.  

With that said, I do believe that Rolex should get into the digital game when they can control the factors of production, integration and technology as they have done since their inception.  They have a time honored history in timepiece mastery.  The potential of what Rolex could do with their timepiece lineup is too immense to ignore.  But they have to guarantee longevity and the timeless design they are known for.  
Concept Art of what a Rolex Digital Watch might look like.  Image from: François Petit / www.1984.agency
Add to that the fact that DATA is becoming the go to resource for every company and human being.  Without data a company will suffer and die out over time.  People that embrace data stop making gut decisions and all the other stuff that might get in the way.  All of us will be drawn into this new realm of more data. The graphic above shows how a data driven watch might use GPS to map a race track and detailed progress in terms of time, splits and speed - a big advance in tech over a standard Daytona.  A dive watch might show dive depth as well as dive time.  Yachtmaster series watches might show weather patterns or even land masses or boat traffic that may cause congestion ahead.  Maybe even sea depth, and wave height could be calculated.  And the more Rolexes people wear, the more data could be collected, providing even better data for others to use. 

Although I fully expect Rolex to embrace digital in the future, they will maintain their main line of watches for the majority of their customer base.  I also expect to see some crossover occur from the digital data people to the standard Rolex line of watches.  For example, step counting.  Why not create a dial that counts the number of steps one takes from the time it is set.  I am sure this could be developed if it doesn't already exist.  Also, I expect to see a mixture of rolex classic design, such as the hands and time clock along with a digital display or two or three.  For example, let's say on the Daytona, the three circles could have digital outputs that vary.  Or perhaps the whole back can be digital, but the clock hands remain intact.  The permutations are endless.  

However, the bottom line is that I wouldn't want to exchange my Rolex timepiece for a digital option unless Rolex was involved somehow.  Do you feel the same?

Paul Newman's Legendary Daytona Rolex Becomes the Most Expensive Watch Sold in the World - For $17.8 Million

Photo from Phillips
Paul Newman (January 26, 1925 - September 26, 2008) was one of the worlds most iconic actors famous for his long legendary history of Hollywood movie masterpieces including The Color of Money (1986), The Hustler (1961), Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969), and The Sting (1982).  He has acted alongside some of the greatest actors in history including his wife Joanne Woodward, Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise, Robert Redford, and Elizabeth Taylor.

The younger generation may remember his voice recordings in Cars as Doc Hudson.  He has won an Emmy, an Academy Award, a BAFTA, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Cannes Film Festival Award. 
Newman with his Daytona Rolex.  Photo Credit: Ron Galella via Getty Images

Paul Newman won several national championships as a driver in Sports Car Club of America road racing.  He owned several winning teams in open-wheel IndyCar racing as well.  His teams have employed the services of Al Unser and Mario Andretti, and have won 8 national titles and 108 individual victories.  He had a 2nd place finish at the 1979 24 Hours of Le Mans, and a first place finish (at age 70) at the 1995 24 Hours of Daytona race. 

Paul Newman competed into his 80's winning a race at Lime Rock and was inducted into the Sports Car Club of America auto racing Hall of Fame, posthumously in 2009. Paul Newman once said, "The only thing I found grace in was racing a car."

His legendary acting career may only be surpassed by his philanthropic activity.  He created Newman's Own, a food company which donates all post-tax profits and royalties to charity.  Thus far, Newman's Own has donated nearly $500 million to charitable causes. 

Newman co-founded Safe Water Network which focuses on sustainable drinking water solutions, and he founded Serious Fun Children's Network which creates family fun summer camps for children with serious illness.  It has served nearly 300,000 children since inception. Newman was named the Most Generous Celebrity of 2008 by Givingback.org.
Photo from Phillips.com

The "Paul Newman" Daytona, reference 6263 was a gift from his wife Joanne Woodward during the filming of the movie "Winning" and was worn every day by the Actor between 1969 and 1984.  It was engraved with "Drive Carefully Me," and remained his loyal companion  until he gifted the priceless timepiece to James Cox, a boyfriend of his first daughter Elinor Newman.  James was visiting with Nell and the Newmans at the family house in Westport Connecticut, known as the "Nook House." 
Engraved with "Drive Carefully Me" Photo from Phillips.com

James was working to restore the tree house on the property as a favor to his famous hosts - the tree house was a favorite aspect of the property by Paul and Joanne.  One day while checking up on James' progress, Paul Newman, having forgotten to wind his wristwatch that morning, asked James if he knew the time.  James responded that he didn't and that he didn't own a watch.  Paul handed James his Rolex and said, "If you can remember to wind this each day, it tells pretty good time."  This was clearly an understatement, as Newman won several bets over the years betting his Rolex told better time than other competitors.

Interestingly, the Exotic Dials of the Paul Newman Rolex Daytona was not popular when they came out.  Rolex, therefore, didn't manufacture many of these.  However the value of these dial designs have steadily risen over the years.  The Reference 6239 is powered by the Rolex caliber Valjoux 722 and has a steel bezel with screw down crown, 2 pump pushers and a non-Oyster case.  It has 17 jewels, and 3 dials and a tachymetric scale allowing race car drivers to measure average speeds up to 200 miles per hour.  It has a black dial and a 36 mm case. It has a small seconds hand, a 30 minute counter at the right (3 o'clock), a 12 hour counter in the middle (6 o'clock). and a 60 second timer at the left (9 o'clock).  This differs greatly from modern Daytona's which now can support up to 400 miles per hour average speed measurements. 

The auction for the Paul Newman Rolex Daytona took place at Phillips Auction House in New York.  Bidding started at 1 million, but that quickly went to $10 million, surpassing the $5 million Rolex Bao Dai price fetched only 6 months before.   The price rose steadily from there finally fetching a record breaking $17.8 million.  Proceeds went to benefit the Nell Newman Foundation and the Newman's Own Foundation.

5 Legendary Rolex Watches

Rolex Stelline Ref 6062  Photo from Phillipswatches.com

The Rolex Stelline Ref 6062 represents one of the finest achievements of the Rolex production history. It is one of the only models (along with the 8171) that combines a full calendar with the phases of the moon. 

The yellow gold 36 mm Oyster case and the triple calendar with star-set numerals is spectacular--rich with complexity and yet fine simplicity. It takes its “Stelline” nickname from the Italian word for starlet – paying homage to the stars in the dial. The Reference 6062 was manufactured for 3 years in the 1950’s and was available in stainless steel, yellow gold and pink gold. Pink gold is the rarest model of the three. 

This is one of my favorite Rolex watches for it its simple beauty and luxury. It sold recently for approx. $665,000.

Rolex Reference 4062  Photo from Christies


The Rolex Reference 4062 is a rare stainless steel and pink gold chronograph with pink dial, tear-drop lugs and originally came with a rice-grain bracelet. This Rolex comes with 18K gold and a coin-edge band. It was manufactured in between 1942 and 1963 and came in yellow gold, yellow gold, stainless steel and a mix of stainless steel and gold. It was created with a 36 mm diameter. 

It is valued at over $100,000 at auction. 

It is a complex piece with 17 jewels, silvered dial, applied baton and dagger numerals, outer blue telemetre and black tachymetre scales.

It has a coin-edge band, downturned lugs, two chronograph buttons and an 18k gold Rolex buckle. It has two dials for seconds and a 30 minutes register. This is a spectacular timepiece that has a beauty to be worn anytime, anywhere – at work or at play. 
The Reference 8171: Photo From Phillipswatches.com
The Reference 8171 is known as the "Padellone" (Italian for large frying pan). This rare stainless steel wristwatch has a triple calendar with moonphases. This watch is highly sought after and recently sold at auction for over $1 million. This is only one of two Rolex models that indicate the day of the week, the month and the phases of the moon.

The Oyster case has a large 38mm diameter. This model was available in yellow gold, pink gold and stainless steel, and was manufactured in the early 1950’s. It has an exquisite expandable Gay Frères Oyster-style bracelet. The 8171 has a silver dial and silver-colored hour markers, with an Arabic numeral 12. It is surrounded by the date ring with blue colored numbers ranging from 1 to 31, all in the typical Rolex font. The needle-shaped date hand has a matching blue arrow shaped tip and silver arrow body. The hour and minute hand are silver in the classic French leaf design.
Reference 6263 Oyster Cosmograph UAE Desert Eagle   Photo from NikolaosPaliousis

The Reference 6263 Oyster Cosmograph UAE Desert Eagle is a rare stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with the UAE Coat of Arms on the dial. It was originally made for Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and has an approx. value of $220,000. Sheikh Mohammed was born on July 15 1949 and is the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and ruler of the Emirate of Dubai.[3]

He ascended to the throne in 2006 and is directly responsible for growing Dubai into a global city. He has high hopes, with a vision to make UAE one of the greatest countries in the world. He has a diverse set of holdings including Emirates Airline, DP world and the Jumeirah Group. He is also personally overseen the development of many Dubai projects including the Palm Islands, Buri Al Arab hotel and the construction of Buri Khalifa, the tallest building in the world.

Sheik Muhammed is a well-recognized poet and equestrian. He has exceptional taste and this has extended to his taste in Rolex timepieces. The Rolex Daytona 6263 is a stunning achievement, primarily produced between 1971 and 1987. This Daytona is missing the Daytona Red symbol on the dial. It has a 37 mm diameter and is 13 mm thick.

Subsidiary Dials - Three engine-turned subsidiary dials display constant seconds, 30 minutes, and 12 hour registers on the bottom half of the dial. The 6263 has a water resistant case with a screw back, screw down crown, and two round screw down chronograph buttons, or “pushers,” in the band. It has a caliber 727 mechanical movement, 17 jewels. It is available in stainless steel and gold. It has a crystal crown with a Sigma dial. This is a watch that you can wear daily, but has the features a high end collector would want.

Rolex Jean-Claude Killy Reference 6036.  Photo from PhillipsWatches.com
The Reference 6036 is nicknamed the “Jean-Claude Killy,” named after the two-time skiing World Cup “Triple Crown” alpine skiing winner in 1968 at Grenoble, France. He was only 25 when he won gold in the slalom, giant slalom, and downhill events. Killy became an actor and famously married French actress and pin-up model Danielle Gaubert. Killy became a poster boy for Rolex for many years. His namesake timepiece was manufactured from 1940 to 1960.

The Reference 6036 Killy Rolex is a manually wound, triple-date calendar Dato-Compax chronograph with sunken gold markers. At a mere 36 millimeters, it will fit nicely on a smaller wrist. It is manufactured in Pink Gold and in Steel. A 6036 recently sold for over $350k.


The Bao Dai Rolex 6062 Becomes the 2nd Most Expensive Rolex Ever Sold at Auction for $5,060,427

Source: Hodinkee

Fifteen years ago, the Bao Dai Rolex Watch sold at auction on November of 2002 for $235,000, at the time making it the most expensive Rolex watch sold at auction. 

The new price of $5,060,427 fetched on May 14, 2017 (both sold at Phillips de Pury & Luxembourg) is a 21.5 times increase, or a 140 percent return on your investment annually for 15 years.  Not too shabby. In May this made the Bao Dai the most expensive Rolex sold in the world.  However, only a few months later, in October, the Paul Newman Daytona Rolex would soundly beat the Bao Dai and fetch a price of 17.8 million at auction at more than 3 times the price - making it the most expensive watch sold in the world.  See my post on the Paul Newman.  

However, the Bao Dai held the title as the most expensive Rolex for 5 long months, setting the stage for incredible prices to be fetched in the future for Rolex Watches owned by famous personalities.
So, what makes the Bao Dai so special?
Besides being one of the most luxurious and rare Rolex timepieces in history (one of only three 6062s ever made), the Bao Dai Rolex has a unique history, tied to the man who first purchased the watch. 
It was the Spring of 1954 in Geneva Switzerland.  The Vietnamese Emperor, Nguyễn Phúc Vĩnh Thụy, was negotiating the terms of the end of his reign and the future of the realm of Vietnam.  The Indochina War was coming to an end, as was the Nguyễn Dynasty. 
Source: Wikipedia
Nguyễn was the 13th and soon to be last emperor of the combined state of Vietnam.  He had ascended the Emperor’s throne in 1925 at the age of 12 and was given the title of Bao Dai – a title that translates as “Protector of Grandeur” or “Keeper of Greatness”.

Nguyễn was educated in France, and spent most of his life in France after his exile.  Bao Dai served as head of state under both French and American occupation.  He fought to keep Vietnam unified and was known as a reformer, both of institutions such as legal and education, but also of outdated traditions.
Bao Dai’s taste was impeccable.  He owned a rare Ferrari 375 MM Spyder, a private yacht, and a superb French villa.

He entered the famed Rolex retailer Chronomètrie Philippe Beguin and requested the most precious Rolex ever made.
Bao Dai turned down many rare timepieces before Rolex came to the rescue, finally displaying the Rolex reference 6062 in yellow gold with a black dial and diamond indexes.  This fine timepiece took on his name Bao Dai and will always be associated with the Last Emperor of Vietnam.

The Rolex 6062 is made of yellow gold and is one of only three models featuring black dials set with diamond markers.  It has other unique features, adding to its rarity.  It has five diamond numerals for even numbers and a different dial layout. 
Because of the diamond numeral at 12 o'clock, the Rolex crown was moved down, consequently forcing the "Rolex Oyster Perpetual"  to be placed below the day and month apertures. The "Officially Certified Chronometer" wording was moved from the center of the dial and placed below the moonphase dial.

The Bao Dai Rolex’s value is highly desirable due to its historical importance and ties to regal fame, but also to its iconic Rolex features including the Oyster case, a Rolex "perpetual" in-house movement and of course the rare full calendar complication featuring a moonphase display. 
This Rolex watch is also in fantastic shape, with no noticible wear marks or imperfections.  The yellow gold Rolex Jubilee bracelet adds to the effect of the watch, while not overly large, it is comfortable to wear. 

Truly a Rolex fit for a king.

Stainless Steel Rolex Yacht-Master 40 Reference 116622

Rolex Yacht-Master 40 Reference 116622 (photo: Rolex)
Rolex’s Yacht-Master 40 model combines form and function to offer a stylish configuration that is equally at home on land and sea. With a 950 Platinum bezel and 904l stainless steel case and bracelet, it also combines luxury with utility. The watchmaker has featured this wristwatch model on their official social media accounts recently, with beautiful photos like the one above that show the Yacht-Master in its natural habitat.

The 116622 reference comes with the option of a dark rhodium dial or a blue dial. The rhodium version comes with the model name and seconds hand in light blue, adding to its cool, nautical aesthetic. Its bidirectional, rotatable bezel features a graduated scale to time dives up to 60 minutes. It's functions are powered by a 3135 self-winding mechanical movement. This is the same movement that powers the popular Submariner Date model.

This Yacht-Master model offers a depth rating of 100 meters and a power reserve of 48 hours. Its Oysterlock safety clasp is equipped with an Easylink comfort extension that increases the length of the bracelet by an additional 5mm. This marine watch boasts a precision of -2/+2 seconds per day after casing and is certified as a Superlative Chronometer.

While there are similarities between this configuration and the Submariner Date, the Yacht-Master caters to a more sophisticated watch collector. The color combinations of this stainless steel version evoke an ocean feel. The addition of a platinum bezel lifts it to a higher echelon than a traditional stainless steel dive watch. The suggested retail price for the Yacht-Master 40 (Reference #116622) is $11,550. For more information on this and other Rolex models, visit their official website at rolex.com.

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Rolex Milgauss Worn by Tim Henman

Rolex Milgauss Worn by Tim Henman
The Rolex Milgauss is the perfect choice for someone that wants a no-frills model. It suits the lifestyle of the physicist and hiker alike. This model was designed to remain undisturbed by intense magnetic fields. Nevertheless, it is the strength of this watch - a product of its tactile purpose - that has made it a favorite amongst collectors.

The Milgauss was the first watch to enclose the movement with a soft-iron container. This made it instantly sturdier than almost all of the watches available on the market at the time. The watch appears sporty while also maintaining the sheer elegance of the Rolex brand. With a seconds hand shaped like a thunderbolt, the Milgauss flips the script on the classical aesthetic of other models.

The watch is powered by a Calibre 3131 self-winding mechanical movement manufactured in-house by Rolex. Its state-of-the-art technology is yet another reminder of the brand’s commitment to producing the best professional watched in the world. Aesthetically, the watch stands out with its black dial and orange hour markers surrounded by a subtle hint of lime green. The lime ring allows for eye-catching beauty while also making the watch more legible to its owner for quick time checks. Its Oyster bracelet an case make this outlier model configuration instantly recognizable.

In one of the latest installments of the “Every Rolex Tells a Story” series, Tim Henman introduces the world to his Milgauss. He chose it for its overall wearability and precision but also because the colors are combined in such a way to make telling the time even easier. For Tim, purchasing the watch was the culmination of a life-long dream of making a career out of tennis, Rolex has been a companion of that journey both on and off the court. Visit rolex.com to learn more about the Milgauss and Tim Henman's Rolex story.

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Every Rolex Tells a Story: Tim Henman

Every Rolex Tells a Story Tim Henman (photo: Rolex)
Tim Henman has lived and breathed the sport of tennis his entire life. His grandfather, grandmother, and great-grandmother all played at Wimbledon. His great-grandmother was the first female player to serve an overarm and his grandmother was the last female player to serve an underarm at Wimbledon. And he has made it to Wimbledon four times and has a four titles under his belt.

His first visit to Centre Court at All England Lawn was in 1981 when he was just six years old. It was here that two things came together: a commitment to pursue tennis as a career and a youthful reverence for Rolex and its role in the sport he would dedicate his life to.

In 1996 Henman was ranked No. 1 in British tennis and he held the title again from the years 1999-2005 when he was replaced by Andy Murray. Murray injured his hip at Wimbledon this past month and lost in the quarter finals to American Sam Querrey.

Henman’s fascination with Rolex was born the same day as his passion for tennis. He connects the watch and brand to the sport that shaped his life. His Milgauss purchase came 32 years after 1981. This model was originally designed for scientists, but the stainless steel configuration is equally equipped for the tennis court. For more information on Tim Henman's Milgauss and his Every Rolex Tells a Story, visit rolex.com.

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Yellow Gold Rolex Day-Date 36 Worn by Björn Borg

Rolex Day-Date 36 worn by Tennis Legend Björn Borg (photo: Rolex)
Rolex is the maker of many iconic watches, but none with the legacy of the Day-Date. It is a model steeped in history, having been worn by many successful men, including US Presidents and legendary athletes like Björn Borg. The Ice Man was featured in Rolex’s latest installment of Every Rolex Tells a Story. His model of choice is the 36mm Day-Date in yellow gold with green dial on black leather shown in the photo.

This is the most traditional size for the model, much smaller than today’s popular 40mm model. The original Day-Date introduced the President bracelet in 1956. However, the leather strap configuration is more tied to wristwatch models of that era. The combination of green and yellow gold is a nod to the watchmaker’s corporate colors. An aperture at 12 o’clock displays the day of the week spelled out completely, a design element that also originated on this iconic model.

2017 Yellow Gold Rolex Day-Date 36 (Reference #118138)
The 2017 Rolex Day-Date 36 (Reference #118138) is available in yellow gold with a green dial and either the cognac leather strap shown above or a green leather strap.
2017 Everose Gold Rolex Day-Date 36 (Reference #118135) 
It is also available in Everose gold with a black leather strap in a variety of dial color options, like the chocolate brown Day-Date 36 configuration (Reference #118135) shown above. Visit rolex.com to browse their entire collection of 2017 Day-Date configurations

Rolex Testimonee Roger Federer Wins his Eighth Wimbledon Title

Rolex Testimonee Roger Federer Wins 8th Wimbledon Title (photo: Sporting News)
After taking a six month long break from tennis, Roger Federer stepped back into the game with a mastery befitting a champion. In the last few months - much to the amazement of the tennis world - he has won two majors. This past Sunday, he seized his eighth Wimbledon title. As he approached the cameras for his post-victory interview, his Rolex Datejust 41 accompanied him as he kissed his trophy.

Rolex has woven the legacy of its brand into the successes of athletes like Roger Federer for a century with its testimonee concept. Federer is no stranger to luxury items, considering he has won over $97,000,000 in prizes over the span of his career. However, it is his relationship with Rolex that is rather noteworthy because it further reinforces the deep-seated commitment Rolex has with associating itself with excellence.

Like so many other testimonees, Federer’s watches mean significantly more for him for their symbolism than as time-telling devices or display of financial achievement. For him, they are part of his most cherished memories. In 2009, he beat Peter Sampras’ all time Grand Slam record at Wimbledon. The iconic shot of him holding up the trophy also includes a clear shot of his prized Rolex. When asked about his watch collection, Federer says “When I look at the watch, I remember that day very vividly.”

Rolex has done an excellent job of tying their timepieces to grand achievements. For more information on Rolex, The Championships at Wimbledon and the Datejust 41, visit rolex.com.

2017 Rolex Pearlmaster 39 Reference 86409RBR

2017 Rolex Pearlmaster 39 Reference 86409RBR
Originally, watchmakers began using jewels in watches to help decrease metal-on-metal wear and subsequently lengthen the lifespan of the device. Diamonds are harder than metal and Rolex has designed a diamond watch to last the millennia.

The Pearlmaster 39, available in 18ct yellow, white, or Everose gold is a work of art. The diamond paved dial is an impressive accomplishment. The Rolex gem-setters carve a setting for each of the gemstones which are then lodged perfectly and aligned with symphonic symmetry. The dial itself is a triumph, guaranteeing a spectacle for all who glance at its face.

The Reference 86409RBR's bracelet boasts the rounded-five piece link structure introduced with the first Pearlmaster twenty-five years ago. In keeping with that traditional design, the Crownclasp is hidden from view. All that is visible on the bracelet, the dial and the bezel are the brilliant diamonds that almost entirely cover the timepiece.

Perhaps the most impressive feature of the new Pearlmaster 39 is its technology. Rolex takes this part of the job more seriously than its competitors, having developed strict exacting criteria for assessing precision. The watchmaker tests its watches even after they have been tested by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute. This Pearlmaster comes equipped with a new generation movement, Calibre 3235. Made with nickel-phosphorus, the watch is immune to magnetic interference.

This watch combines elements of jewel art with the reliability of advanced technology, leaving no doubt that Rolex is pioneering the future of the time-telling industry. For more information on the Pearlmaster 39 (Reference #86409RBR) visit rolex.com.

2017 Stainless Steel and Yellow Gold Rolex Datejust 41

2017 Stainless Steel and Yellow Gold Rolex Datejust 41 (photo: Rolex)
The latest Rolex model to be featured on the watchmaker's official website is the Yellow Rolesor Datejust 41 (Reference # 126303) shown above. It is featured along with their sponsorship of The Championships, Wimbledon 2017. This classic dress watch model is sized to please modern tastes at 41 millimeters. A smooth gold bezel replaces the the model's customary fluted bezel in this updated reference. 

Inside its stainless steel and gold Oyster case lies the Manufacture Rolex Calibre 3235 self-winding mechanical movement that powers its date and time functions. With a power reserve of 70 hours, it beats at a precision of -2/+2 seconds per day. This model offers a depth rating of 100 meters. Its mobobloc middle case attaches its screw-down case back with its scratch-resistant sapphire crystal. The watchmaker’s iconic Cyclops magnifying lens is affixed to the crystal over the date aperture at 3 o’clock. 

A slate dial gives this elegant wristwatch a modern touch, with the Roman numeral hour markers in a sophisticated combination of black and green. A white baton-style hour marker is placed at 9 o’clock to offset the white color visible through the date aperture. This design touch is a testament to the watchmaker’s dedication to perfection when it comes to dial symmetry. 

Rolex’s flat, three-piece Oyster bracelet is featured on this configuration in yellow gold and stainless steel. Its folding Oysterclasp clasp comes with a 5mm Easylink comfort extension. The price of this Datejust 41 (Reference #126303) is $11,950 USD. For more information on this and other 2017 Rolex models, visit the Rolex Models section. 

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