The gentleman who prefers the richness of vinyl audio over the smooth efficiency of digital will find no shortage of inspiring timepieces from Rolex. The mechanical watch already speaks to the heart of the contemporary gentleman, but Rolex takes it to another level with the four watches we are featuring here. From the eternal elegance of the timeless Cellini collection and the tasteful iterations of the Oyster Perpetual Datejust, to the restrained refinement of the Oyster Perpetual 41, Rolex has mastered classicism in traditional watchmaking while adding a dash of contemporary savoir faire.
Introduced in 2014, the lines of the Cellini models are sober and refined, the materials noble, the finishings sleek: every detail reflects the traditional art of watchmaking. But the Cellini collection is not suspended in an idealised past, even as it draws inspiration from the classical part of the Italian Renaissance. These watches evoke the finest examples of contemporary architecture, where grandiose proportions and clean lines are accompanied by a strikingly modern reading of space and light. Every line in the collection is suffused with refinement, and elevated to the level of fine watchmaking by precious materials. Cellini watches only use 18 ct white or Everose gold, in honour of Renaissance artist Benvenuto Cellini, the sculptor and goldsmith to the popes, who inspired the name of the collection. These materials are cast by Rolex in its own foundry in Geneva, bearing witness to the depth of the manufacture’s know-how. The classically minded gentleman will also appreciate the refined lugs, the polished finish and another key characteristic of the Cellini collection: the double bezel. One bezel is domed and the second delicately fluted, which adds a touch of distinction to the wrist.
Rolex Cellini Moonphase in 18 ct Everose Gold with a leather strap
The only watch in the Cellini collection with an astronomical function, the Cellini Moonphase is a study in exclusivity and elegance — qualities distinguished gentlemen appreciate. The round shape of the Cellini Moonphase, and its 39 mm proportions emphasise these traits, along with the double bezel. The contrast of the blue enamelled disc at 6 o’clock showing the full moon and the new moon against the white lacquer dial brings harmony to the watch. The full moon is depicted by a meteorite circle and the new moon by a silver ring.
The moonphase is read via the triangular indicator at 12 o’clock on the subdial, as the full moon and new moon rotate through the lunar cycle. This peerless model is driven by a self-winding mechanical movement entirely manufactured by Rolex, whose patented moonphase module is astronomically accurate for 122 years. This is yet another feature of the sublime automatic calibre 3195, which also comes with approximately 48 hours of power reserve.
The Cellini Moonphase displays the date around the circumference of the dial, via a centre hand with a crescent moon at its tip, and is a distinctive feature unique to the model.
Rolex Cellini Time in 18 ct white gold fitted with a double bezel and a leather strap
Reinterpreting the codes of classic watchmaking with a contemporary touch, all the specific characteristics of the Cellini collection shine in this time-only model, from the double bezel to the flared shape of the screw-down crown and the fluting on the screw-down caseback. The details on the Cellini Time in 18 ct white gold truly define the spirit of classicism, as any distinguished gentleman knows. It is also robust enough to handle the challenges of daily wear with an excellent waterproofness rating of up to 50 metres (165 feet), belying its classical form.
The simple, clear dial of the Cellini Time pays tribute to the timeless codes of classic watchmaking, while reinterpreting them with an elegant modernity. The stylized, stretched applique hour markers are divided by a minute track that has been moved toward the centre of the dial, closer to the tips of the hands that are shaped like two-edged swords, counting off the time with the full precision of a Rolex Superlative Chronometer-certified movement, calibre 3132.
The high-precision self-winding mechanical calibre 3132 was entirely developed and manufactured by Rolex. It features patented innovations from Rolex, including the Perpetual rotor, paramagnetic blue Parachrom hairspring and high-performance Paraflex shock absorbers. These shock absorbers are particularly notable in a dress watch because they protect the heart of the watch — the escapement — from sudden disturbances that might even cause the watch to stop. Introduced by Rolex in 2005, the Paraflex shock absorbers ensure that the balance spring remains securely in place, under any conditions of wear, with no risk of deformation.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust
The epitome of the classic watch, the Datejust is a hallmark of horological excellence and versatility, exuding timeless elegance and perfect for daily wear. With functions and aesthetics that never go out of fashion, a gentleman need never fear looking out of style with the Datejust on his wrist. Launched in 1945, the Datejust was the first self-winding waterproof chronometer wristwatch to display the date in a window at 3 o’clock on the dial, which would become the watchmaking standard. The watch also consolidated all the major innovations that the brand had contributed to the modern wristwatch until then. The Datejust has spanned eras while retaining the enduring aesthetic characteristics that make it so instantly recognisable. It is also a very robust and trusty timekeeper, with a waterproofness rating of 100 metres. Such strength goes well beyond what is expected for watches in this category. Datejust watches are also incredibly versatile, with the large variety of configurations available, as its owner wishes.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust 41 in Oystersteel and 18 ct yellow gold, with a Jubilee bracelet
The Datejust is a restrained yet robust watch suitable for daily wear, brought to life in this 18 ct yellow gold and Oystersteel Rolesor model. It is extraordinarily practical to boot, which is perfect for the dapper gentleman who values both form and function.
Originally, the fluting of the bezel had a functional purpose: it served to screw the bezel down onto the case helping to ensure the waterproofness of the watch. It was therefore identical to the fluting on the case back, which was also screwed down onto the case for waterproofness, using specific Rolex tools. This changed over time as Rolex innovated its watchmaking techniques, leading the fluting to become an aesthetic element. Today the fluted bezel is a mark of distinction, always crafted in gold.
The Datejust revolutionised the wristwatch’s date display. It was the first to bear a date window on the dial, and it was also the first to feature an instantaneous date mechanism in 1956. Just before that, the Cyclops lens, which takes its name from the one-eyed giants of Greek mythology, was patented by Rolex in the early 1950s and introduced for the first time in 1953 on a Datejust model. This innovation makes it appreciably easier for the reading of the date and has become a signature feature that classic watch lovers look out for.
The self-winding calibre 3235 that powers this watch is entirely developed and manufactured by Rolex. A movement at the forefront of watchmaking technology, it was first released in 2015. Carrying a number of patents, the movement offers outstanding performance in terms of precision, power reserve, resistance to shocks and magnetic fields, convenience and reliability.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual
Perpetually renewed to take on the brand’s latest technical innovations, the Oyster Perpetual features all the key characteristics of the Oyster Perpetual collection — the waterproof Oyster case, a mechanical self-winding movement via Perpetual rotor, and excellent chronometric precision. The Oyster Perpetual range is wide and varied, encompassing many styles and sizes, allowing each watch to perfectly mould itself around the wearer’s unique lifestyle and personality. Displaying hours, minutes and seconds, made exclusively of Oystersteel and featuring a sophisticated finish, these are chronometer wristwatches in their purest form. The Oyster Perpetual is further enhanced by the accompanying Oyster bracelet, the most recognisable bracelet in watchmaking.
Oyster Perpetual 41 in Oystersteel, fitted with a silver dial and an Oyster bracelet
The Oyster Perpetual 41 with a silver dial is the perfect embodiment of restrained beauty in form and appearance. This is evident right from the dial, with the sunray finish creating delicate light reflections. It is obtained using masterful brushing techniques that create grooves running outwards from the centre of the dial. Light is diffused consistently along each engraving, creating a characteristic subtle glow that moves depending on the position of the wrist. Once the sunray finish has been completed, the dial colour is applied using Physical Vapour Deposition or electroplating, with a light coat of varnish completing its final look.
The gentleman with an eye for quiet sophistication always has an eye out for little details so it is worth noting that the hour marker and hands come in 18 ct yellow gold. Like the model with the bright black, sunray-finished dial we covered previously, legibility is elevated thanks to the optimized Chromalight display, where the hands and hour markers are coated or filled with a luminescent material that emits a long-lasting blue glow in dark conditions. Another impeccably stylish yet functional innovation characteristic of the Oyster Perpetual 41 is the use of Oystersteel. Specially developed by the brand, Rolex’s proprietary blend of Oystersteel belongs to the 904L steel family, alloys most commonly used in high-technology and in the aerospace and chemical industries, where maximum resistance to corrosion is essential. Oystersteel is extremely resistant, offers an exceptional sheen once polished and maintains its beauty even in the harshest environments.
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