The Rolex Day-Date is synonymous with luxury, leadership and prestige. This eternal jewel was the first watch to indicate the date and day of the week on the dial. Manufactured in gold or platinum, it is the watch par excellence of the most influential personalities.
5 Interesting Facts About The Rolex Day-Date
- First automatic wristwatch that indicates the date and the day of the week in a complete way
- Available exclusively in 18 carat or platinum gold
- The watch chosen by the most influential personalities
- Exclusive three-link President bracelet for the Day-Date
- Superlative stopwatch, 3255 manufacture caliber
Symbol of prestige, leadership and luxury
The Rolex Day-Date was the first wristwatch to indicate the date and the day of the week in a complete way, that is, visualizing all the letters and numbers on the dial. Launched in 1956, this jewel of watch making is a symbol of exclusivity and avant-garde that has helped make Rolex a pioneer in the luxury sector. In this sense, talking about the Day-Date as a ‘luxury watch’ is no triviality. This prestigious piece is made exclusively in 18 carat gold or platinum, and, therefore, we could say that it belongs to the elite of watches. Another of its most noteworthy features is the President rounded three-link bracelet designed especially for this watch. The other Rolex models like the Daytona, the Oyster Perpetual or the Submariner usually wear an Oyster bracelet with three long, flat links.
The Day-Date, also known as the “Rolex President“ , is not only the favorite of the state leader; it is also the watch of the most influential personalities of finance, religion, culture and other spheres of influence.
Presidents of the United States like Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson, like Pope John Paul II, sported a Rolex Day-Date on their wrist. Also big investors like Warren Buffett, one of the richest men in the world, have presumed to have the presidents’ clock. Even, it is rumored that Marilyn Monroe gave away her lover, the American president John F. Kennedy, a Day-Date with the inscription “Jack / with love as always / Marilyn / May 29, 1962”. As they say, Kennedy got rid of the watch by giving it to one of his employees. If the story really was like that, it is still an enigma; the truth is that the clock appeared in 2005 at an auction, in which an anonymous person paid $ 120,000 for the presidential watch.
Materials and design that distill luxury
The designers of the Geneva Manufacture have opted for gold in all its variants – yellow, white and pink (called by Rolex as Eve rose) – or platinum to make the case and the President’s Day-Date bracelet. Rolex has decided on 18-carat gold to capture the indexes that do not rust over the years. In addition, the design of the dial has not only been created meticulously by the artists of the house Rolex, but also, each of the boxes of these watches has been made by hand.
This Swiss brand also offers the Day-Date spheres in colors such as blue, green, silver, orange, black, brown and glacier blue. The mother-of-pearl version is one of the most eccentric in the collection, and among the most luxurious models, it presents pieces with indexes set with diamonds. The bezel is available in different variants, including the grooved and smooth texture introduced since 2000 for models made of platinum with sapphire crystal. The first Day-Date model was introduced by Rolex in 1956 and currently offers a wide range of boxes of 36 or 40 mm in diameter, in addition to another 41 mm in diameter for the Day-Date II model.
One of the vintage pieces most coveted by collectors is the model with reference 18038, whose price in the second hand market reaches 9700 euros. This Day-Date of the Seventies and Eighties is distinguished by its legendary “Stella sphere” that is characterized by providing freshness thanks to its varied color palette in which includes colors such as white, yellow, blue, orange, pink, turquoise , brown, salmon and of course the color black. Unlike the enameled spheres, decoration obtained by fixing in ovens, the chromatic effect of Day-Date is achieved through a kind of lacquer. There are two theories about the origin of the name of these spheres. On the one hand it is said to be inspired by the colorful works of the American painter Frank Stella. The second hypothesis suggests that it comes from the term star -Stella in Latin- as a synonym of luminosity and brightness.
Avant-garde technical advances
The first Day-Date with the reference 6511 housed an automatic caliber 1030, in which the disc of the days of the week revolved on the ring of the date. The seven small windows positioned on the dial at 12 o’clock were placed in such a way that the day could be seen with its entire letters, in addition to the corresponding date. The model also featured a lens called Cyclops placed on the glass in order to improve the readability of the date positioned at three o’clock. Currently, this model offers the date indicator in more than 25 languages.
The model with reference number 6611 of the year 1957 houses the caliber 1055 with which Rolex presented an improved date display mechanism. In fact, the first versions of the Day-Date presented alterations in the precision when adjusting the date, but with the new generation of calibers, Rolex managed to polish the technique.
The decade the seventies also dazzled with new technical advances. In the year 1972, Rolex equipped all its parts with the caliber 1556, which had a mechanism of stop seconds to adjust the time much more accurately. In the late seventies, Rolex introduced the rapid change of the date through the crown. It was only necessary to pull it halfway to change the day and date in the blink of an eye. This innovation greatly benefited the Day-Date, giving it that touch of unmistakable technical exclusivity.
The luxury watches par excellence
“The presidents’ watch” is undoubtedly a banner of exclusivity, prestige and elegance. That is why this avant-garde piece captivates especially a select audience and enjoys an influential reputation in politics, economics and culture. Through its values and its prestige, Rolex offers in its collection real jewels that keep inside the essence of the Swiss watch making tradition in balance with the most exquisite aesthetics and avant-garde technical innovations. Without a doubt, the Day-Date is one of the most coveted pieces by celebrities, heads of state, collectors, and of course also by all those who love watch making.