Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XII Hong Kong Saturday, June 5, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1987
    Reference No: 18078
    Movement No: 897’974
    Case No: 9’582’330, inside caseback stamped 18000
    Model Name: Day-Date
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3055, 27 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: 18K yellow gold Rolex President bark-finished bracelet, max length 180mm
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K yellow gold Rolex concealed folding clasp
    Dimensions: 36mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex guarantee stamped Watches of Switzerland Limited dated 28th January 1988, instruction manual, product literature, letter, Watches of Switzerland privileged customer card, green card holder, hang tag and fitted presentation box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The Rolex Day-Date is one that is admired by most due to its iconic status, diversification and most notably its timeless appeal. First introduced in the mid-1950s, the Day-Date was a phenomenal breakthrough for the firm as it was the world’s first self-winding chronometer wristwatch with a waterproof case as well as a day and date indication at 12 and 3 o’clock.

    In 1977, Rolex introduced the Day-Date ref. 18000 series fitted with an upgraded cal. 3055 beating at 28800 bph enhancing its robustness and precision. Since the ref. 1800 series, the Day-Date has witnessed a wide array of case and dial materials to cater to the demand for diversity. Hardstone dials are among one of the most celebrated materials to be incorporated, as each hardstone is unique deriving from various species. Requiring extreme precision and precautions, each hardstone dial is delicately cut to fit the specification of the dial. Each hardstone has its own distinct hardness as well as its natural mottling and texture making it an extremely difficult task to execute.

    The present Rolex Day-Date ref. 18078 in yellow gold with a bark-finished bezel and center links displays a highly desirable lapis lazuli dial with strong gold inclusions that pairs wonderfully with the yellow gold case. Offered with its full set of accessories with a guarantee dated 1988, the present timepiece is with no doubt a rare example. With the continuous rise in demand for vintage Day-Date timepieces, this present specimen will surely captivate the attention of Rolex enthusiasts.

  • 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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From an Important European Collector


Ref. 18078
A very fine, well-preserved and rare yellow gold wristwatch with center seconds, day, date, lapis lazuli dial, bracelet, guarantee and presentation box

Circa 1987
36mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

HK$195,000 - 390,000 

Sold for HK$403,200

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XII

Hong Kong Auctions 5-6 June 2021