Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIII Hong Kong Thursday, November 25, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1988
    Reference No: 16238
    Movement No: 8’357’505
    Case No: R697’682
    Model Name: Datejust
    Material: 18K yellow gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3135, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Gilt Rolex pin buckle
    Dimensions: 36mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and buckle signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex guarantee stamped Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Co., LTD., Hong Kong dated 15th February 1989.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Hardstone dials are without a doubt one of the most interesting elements featured in some rare examples of Rolex timepieces. Offering a wide array of colors, textures and appeal, these natural hardstone dials can simply be considered as unique, as no other example will ever be the same as another. Extremely tough to execute requiring a rigorous process, each natural hardstone has varying hardness and composition and are extremely fragile. It is believed that the production of these dials come with an 80% wastage rate and usually vary in thickness compared to regular dials.

    The present example Rolex Datejust ref. 16238 features one of the most demanded hardstone dials in recent times, onyx. With an opaque glossy and wax-like luster, onyx is ranked 6.5-7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Paired beautifully against the iconic yellow gold case, the absence of numerals and outer track on the dial allows the wearer to admire the hardstone dial at full view. The present timepiece is very well-preserved with a crisp case and a flawless dial.

  • 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. 16238
An attractive and rare yellow gold wristwatch with center seconds, date, onyx dial and guarantee

Circa 1988
36mm diameter
Case, dial, movement and buckle signed

HK$95,000 - 180,000 

Sold for HK$277,200

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIII

Hong Kong Auctions 25-26 November 2021