A rare and attractive yellow gold calendar wristwatch with so-called "porcelain" dial and bracelet, made for the Sultanate of Oman

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1988
    Reference No: 18238
    Movement No: 5'080'534
    Case No: L'370'737
    Model Name: Day-Date
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3155, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: 18K yellow gold Rolex President bracelet, reference 8385, end links stamped 55B, max length 180mm
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Rolex concealed deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 36mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex service box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    This beautiful and unusual Day-Date is fitted with a so-called porcelain dial displaying an off-white hue with black graphics that seem almost three-dimensional. Rolex produced these porcelain dials between 1988 and 1989, most of these dials were used on Daytonas. However, sparingly few were also fitted to Day-Date models. Like many early porcelain dial Daytonas, this watch also bears an "L" serial.

    Furthermore, the caseback is engraved with a "Jubilee Khanjar" logo, indicating it was made for the Sultanate of Oman. Particularly during the 1970s and 1980s, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Saided of Oman ordered a number of daring and interesting Rolex timepieces, such as the present example.

    Reference 18238 was the first Day-Date to feature a “Double Quick Set” mechanism, which allowed the rapid and instantaneous setting of both the day and the date indications by turning the crown.

  • Maker Bio

    Rolex

    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Rolex

Ref. 18238
A rare and attractive yellow gold calendar wristwatch with so-called "porcelain" dial and bracelet, made for the Sultanate of Oman

Circa 1988
36mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Estimate
CHF15,000 - 25,000 
€12,900-21,400
$15,900-26,500

sold for CHF22,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Sale
+41 22 317 81 81
aghotbi@phillips.com

The Geneva Watch Auction: SEVEN

Geneva Auction 12-13 May 2018