Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XVII Hong Kong Friday, November 24, 2023 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1990
    Reference No: 18239
    Movement No: 5'918'561
    Case No: E929’558, inside caseback stamped “18200”
    Model Name: Day-Date
    Material: 18K white gold
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 3155, 31 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: 18K white gold Rolex President bracelet, endlinks stamped “55B”, max length 185mm
    Clasp/Buckle: 18K white gold Rolex concealed deployant clasp stamped “8385”
    Dimensions: 36mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    In 1988, the reference 18239 was introduced with an upgraded caliber 3155. The newly introduced caliber allows the date and day to be adjusted via the crown with a quick-set feature.

    The present example encased in white gold and fitted with a briar root wood dial is a rare variant and a specimen of the fathomed artistry of Rolex’s dial creations. Often seen in yellow gold cases, the white gold variant is believed to have produced in much less quantities. Wood dials are extremely hard to work with as they are brittle and for dial makers to cut out apertures or the day and date without fracturing the material requires supreme artisanal craftsmanship to execute.

    This particular example is preserved in an impressive condition, with crisp hallmarks beneath the lugs and the green caseback sticker remains partially intact. Furthermore, the top of the lugs and caseback display crisp, milled finishes, attesting to the originality of the timepiece.

  • 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. 18239
A well-preserved and rare white gold wristwatch with day, date, center seconds, “wood” dial and bracelet

Circa 1990
36mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

HK$200,000 - 400,000 

Sold for HK$355,600

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Deputy Chairman, Watches, Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XVII

Hong Kong Auction 24-25 November 2023