Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XI Hong Kong Saturday, November 28, 2020 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1988
    Reference No: 16550
    Movement No: 2’114’702
    Case No: R912’172
    Model Name: Explorer II
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3085, 27 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped “78360”, endlinks stamped “501”, max length 195mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped “M8”
    Dimensions: 40mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex guarantee dated 3rd December 1988 stamped Caronel Inc., Guam, instruction manual, product literature, hang tag, 1987 – 1988 calendar card, green card holder, outer packaging and fitted presentation box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    While most would agree that the Rolex Explorer II ref. 16550 fitted with a white dial is one of the most interesting vintage sports wristwatch by Rolex from the 1980s, some examples feature a creamy patina developed on the dial due to age and the nature of the material. Developed at random, not all examples fitted with a white dial develops a creamy hue, making examples that do, rare.

    Initially introduced in 1985, the ref. 16550 was a transitional model of the Explorer II with a short production span of roughly four years. Featuring applied luminous white gold indexes, the successor ref. 16570 featured applied blackened luminous indexes giving a different appeal.

    The present example Rolex Explorer II ref. 16550 features a rare “creamy pink” dial from circa 1988 bearing an “R” serial. The intensified patina with a slight pinkish tint is developed in uniformed fashion. Simultaneously, the luminous material on the dial and hands have also aged and developed a creamy hue matching harmoniously with the hue of the dial. The present example is further charmed by its original guarantee and its fitted presentation box.

  • 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. 16550
An attractive and rare stainless steel dual-time wristwatch with center seconds, date, 24-hour indication, “creamy pink” dial, bracelet, guarantee and presentation box

Circa 1988
40mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

HK$120,000 - 200,000 

Sold for HK$302,400

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi

Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XI

Hong Kong Auction 29 November 2020