Rolex - The Geneva Watch Auction: XIV Geneva Friday, November 5, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: circa 1988
    Reference No: 18038
    Movement No: 2002806
    Case No: R787081
    Model Name: Day-Date
    Material: 18K yellow gold and lapis lazuli
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3055, 27 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: 18K yellow gold Rolex President bracelet, max length 172mm
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Rolex concealed folding deployant clasp stamped “8385”
    Dimensions: 36mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by contemporary Rolex fitted presentation box and outer packaging.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The Rolex Day-Date has long been admired for its iconic status, diversification and most notably its timeless appeal. Over the years, it has witnessed a wide array of case and dial materials demonstrating the ever-growing demand for uniqueness and originality. Ever glamorous, Rolex has excelled in using hard stone such as lapis lazuli, rubellite, blood stone, coral, jade or even onyx to cite a few. Requiring extreme precision and precautions, each hardstone is delicately cut to fit the specification of the dial, rendering each watch unique.

    Adorned with a shimmering fluted bezel, the present yellow gold Day-Date reference 18038 displays a highly desirable lapis lazuli dial. This very example is particularly rich and saturated in tone, with strong gold and copper inclusions that pair wonderfully with the yellow gold case. The hour markers have been removed leaving the dial pure to express its penetrating colour to its fullest.

    Indeed, the lapis lazuli stone has a long and rich history of folklore and legends, always fascinating people with its shades of intense blue. Symbolizing health, nobility, luck, elegance and purity, Rolex wonderfully combined here the mythological allure of the precious stone with the fine design of the Day-Date model.

    In overall excellent condition, the present watch is a truly incredible item to behold, possess and enjoy.

  • Artist Biography


    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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Ref. 18038
A well-preserved and rare yellow gold wristwatch with center seconds, day, date, lapis lazuli dial, bracelet and presentation box

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

CHF15,000 - 25,000 

Sold for CHF37,800

Contact Specialist

Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Watches, Continental Europe and the Middle East Director

The Geneva Watch Auction: XIV

Geneva Auction 5 & 7 November 2021