A rare, impressive and unusual yellow gold, diamond and yellow sapphire-set chronograph wristwatch

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 2005
    Reference No: 116598 SACO
    Movement No: CO'226'426
    Case No: D'804'987
    Model Name: Cosmograph Daytona "Leopard"
    Material: 18K yellow gold, diamonds and yellow sapphires
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 4130, 44 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Rolex folding deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 40mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex punched Guarantee dated January 24, 2007, invoice dated January 24, 2007, product literature and leather wallet.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Introduced at Basel Fair in 2004, reference 116598 SACO immediately captured the eyes and hearts of Rolex fans. Set with diamond hour markers contrasting against a leopard print dial and strap, the watch was something entirely different than anything Rolex had conceived in the past. This print inspired the watch's nickname, "Leopard".

    The watch is adorned with 36 baguette-cut yellow sapphires on the bezel, which are completely uniform, set incredibly close together and matching, which technically is no easy feat. The hoods between the lugs are also embellished with brilliant diamonds.

    Presented in excellent condition, this example is accompanied by its original punched guarantee and invoice, stating the watch was retailed at Emperor Watch & Jewellery in Hong Kong.

    Gem-set, precious sports watches are becoming increasingly collectible today, due to their good looks and robust proportions. Conspicuous, bold and audacious, this watch is a completely novel and interesting interpretation of the Cosmograph Datyona, making a bold statement about both Rolex and the collector who dons the timepiece.

  • 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. 116598 SACO
A rare, impressive and unusual yellow gold, diamond and yellow sapphire-set chronograph wristwatch

Circa 2005
40mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and clasp signed

Estimate
CHF20,000 - 40,000 
€17,100-34,300
$21,200-42,300

sold for CHF56,250

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