While all variants of the stainless steel and white gold Rolex Sky-Dweller are popular, the blue dial version is the most in-demand of them all. In fact, the Sky-Dweller ref. 326934 with a blue dial has a market value that’s about twice its official retail price. So, why is the blue-dial Rolex Sky-Dweller so hot right now?
One of the more obvious explanations is that its material and color combination fits right into the white metal/blue face watch trend that’s been prevalent for years now – think Nautilus, Royal Oak, Overseas, and Seamaster Diver 300M. However, another reason is simply that the Sky-Dweller is one of Rolex’s most fascinating modern watches. Not only does the Sky-Dweller combine classic Rolex dress watch touches with a larger case size but it’s also a GMT watch with an annual calendar complication. Plus, regardless of the color, the Sky-Dweller boasts a dial layout that’s unlike any other Rolex watch. In short, the blue Sky-Dweller 326934 blends popular materials, colors, and functions, which results in an exceedingly sought-after luxury watch. Let’s dig into the details.
Rolex Sky-Dweller Reference 326934 Blue Dial
Blue Sky-Dweller 326934 Key Features:
– Reference Number: 326934
– Production Years: 2017 – Present
– Case Size: 42mm
– Materials: White Rolesor (Stainless Steel & 18k White Gold)
– Functions: Time w/ Running Seconds, Date Display, Month Indicator, GMT Functionality, Annual Calendar
– Dial: Blue w/ Luminous Hour Markers (Black and White also available)
– Bezel: Ring Command, 18k White Gold, Fluted Style
– Crystal: Sapphire (Flat w/ Cyclops Lens)
– Movement: Rolex Caliber 9001
– Water Resistance: 100 Meters / 330 Feet
– Strap/Bracelet: Oyster Bracelet or Jubilee Bracelet (as of 2021)
– Retail Price: $14,800 (Oyster Bracelet); $15,050 (Jubilee Bracelet)
A Brief History of the Rolex Sky-Dweller
Rolex debuted the Sky-Dweller collection in 2012. It’s not often Rolex unveils an entirely new model, so it wasn’t a surprise that the novel Sky-Dweller was the biggest news to come out of Baselworld that year. The Sky-Dweller was a lot to take in at first – it had a generously sized 42mm case exclusively available in solid gold, which was topped with a rotating fluted bezel that played a part in controlling the internal movement. Its dial was packed with information including two time zones, a date window, and a month indicator – oh, and it was also an annual calendar.
The first three Rolex Sky-Dweller references that launched the collection were the yellow gold Sky-Dweller ref. 326938, the white gold Sky-Dweller ref. 326939, and the Everose gold Sky-Dweller ref. 326135. Rolex fitted the first two options with a matching gold Oyster bracelet and paired the latter with a leather strap. Two years later, Rolex added three more gold variants with additional bracelet and leather strap options.
For the first five years of the Sky-Dweller’s history, the watch was only available in full gold, making it out of reach for most collectors. However, in 2017, Rolex dropped the entry price of the Sky-Dweller by adding two new Rolesor (the brand’s term for watches that combine gold and steel) options to the Sky-Dweller line including the two-tone yellow gold/steel ref. 326933 and the subject of our discussion here, the steel Sky-Dweller ref. 326934 with a white gold bezel. The pair of then-new Sky-Dweller watches were equipped with Oyster bracelets and Rolex offered a few different dial colors.
Rolex continued to evolve the Sky-Dweller collection over the following years by adding various bracelet options. You can find a number of these used Rolex watches on the secondary market. The yellow and Everose gold Sky-Dweller models are now also available on black rubber Oysterflex bracelets and the Rolesor editions now offer the choice between Oyster and Jubilee bracelets. It’s also important to note that Rolex no longer makes any white gold Sky-Dweller models nor does it offer any with leather straps.
Rolex Sky-Dweller Timeline
– 2012: Debut of the Rolex Sky-Dweller collection with references 326938, 326939, and 326135
– 2014: Launch of Sky-Dweller references 326138, 326139, and 326935
– 2017: Release of Rolesor Sky-Dweller references 326933 and 326934
– 2018: Discontinuation of full white gold Sky-Dweller models
– 2020: Introduction of Sky-Dweller on Oysterflex bracelets with reference 326238 and 326235
– 2021: Introduction of Rolesor Sky-Dweller on Jubilee bracelets
The Appeal of the Rolex Sky-Dweller 326934 Blue Dial
Although the debut of the Sky-Dweller was big news, there was some trepidation among the watch enthusiast crowd about the new model – even among Rolex fans. However, by the time the Sky-Dweller 326934 came onto the scene, it received a much warmer welcome.
Perhaps it’s because the steel/white gold combination was much more accessible than previous all-gold versions and onlookers could let themselves imagine wearing the watch. Maybe it’s because Rolex settled into using cleaner baton hour markers on the dial and nixed the more ornate Arabic and Roman numerals. Another possibility was that the market grew to appreciate the striking looks and mechanical complexity of the Sky-Dweller. After all, it wouldn’t be the first time that a new Rolex model took a few years to catch on with the general public.
Or maybe, it’s that striking bright blue dial that changed everything. It’s easy to see how the rich blue hue contrasts beautifully with the sleek steel case and glistening white gold fluted bezel. Plus, the blue sets the perfect stage for the lume-filled baton markers, white text, and red accents to truly pop on the dial. The blue face is refined, yet it adds more personality to the watch compared to the muted white and black dials also available with the white Rolesor Sky-Dweller. Initially, the Rolex Sky-Dweller 26934 was only available mounted on a sporty steel three-link Oyster bracelet. However, in 2021, Rolex added the dressier five-link Jubilee steel bracelet as an option too.
The Caliber 9001 is one of Rolex’s most complicated modern movements, developed and manufactured entirely in-house. The beauty of this movement lies in its ease of use, despite the complexity of what it offers. Local time is read via the traditional center hands while a second time zone is read via a small inverted triangle positioned above a slightly off-centered 24-hour disc. Along with the traditional date window at 3 o’clock Rolex also furnished the Sky-Dweller with 12 dial windows next to the hour markers, which fill in red to indicate the current month. Finally, one of the most impressive features of Caliber 9001 is that it’s an annual calendar, which means that the Sky-Dweller can distinguish between months that have 30 or 31 days. The wearer will only need to correct the watch’s calendar once a year – on March 1st – due to the fact that annual calendar watches cannot account for leap years.
Rolex and the Color Blue
Blue has been an exceedingly popular color for Rolex over the last few years. When it upgraded the Submariner bezels to Cerachrom, the classic blue color profile was carried over onto the next generation of watches. Additionally, on the Batman GMT-Master II, Rolex decided to introduce an all-new blue and black Cerachrom bezel, which made the watch immensely popular, creating waitlists at dealers the morning it was announced. And let’s not forget the Yacht-Master II and its blue bezel against its stainless and Everose Rolesor case and bracelet.
However, not all Rolex blues are created equal. Smurf blue, Batman blue, Milgauss blue (Z-Blue) – they’re all completely different. Despite all being variations of the rich, pigmented blue we’ve come to know and love from Rolex, they all feature a very different look. The Sky-Dweller blue is cool, dark, and elegant. It has a steely quality that matches the case and band. The blue face on this watch is undeniably superb and will no doubt cement the reference 326934 Sky-Dweller as a long-time favorite among collectors.
How Much is the Rolex Sky-Dweller Blue Dial?
– Rolex Sky-Dweller 326934-0003 – Oyster Bracelet: $14,800
– Rolex Sky-Dweller 326934-0004 – Jubilee Bracelet: $15,050
The official manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of the Rolex Sky-Dweller 326934 with a blue dial is $14,800 for the Oyster bracelet edition and $15,050 for the Jubilee bracelet variant. However, similar to other popular Rolex watches, its value on the secondary market is much higher than that.
Pre-owned Sky-Dweller 326934 watches with blue dials start at around $29,000 for Oyster bracelet versions, which is about double their original brand-new prices. Plus, it’s not uncommon to find the newest blue Sky-Dweller with a Jubilee bracelet selling pre-owned on the secondary market for over $35,000! That’s approaching 2.5x its MSRP. To put these prices into context, the steel and white gold Sky-Dweller with a blue dial is on par with the secondary market value of the wildly popular Daytona 116600LN.
The Collectible Rolex Sky-Dweller
It’s so secret that the Rolex Sky-Dweller had a slow start. Despite slick looks, incredible mechanical ingenuity, and a direct appeal to the world’s growing jet-set, this watch received little appreciation upon its initial release in 2012. Much of that can be attributed to the fact that it was originally only available in solid 18k gold, giving it a hefty price tag and also making it quite heavy on the wrist.
However, the addition of the white Rolesor Sky-Dweller, particularly with the blue dial, propelled the entire collection into the spotlight. What the blue dial offers is something different – wearable and inviting, luxurious yet robust. It’s everything the Rolex Sky-Dweller didn’t represent when it was first released
The combination of stainless steel, 18k white gold, and blue is clearly a winning formula for the Rolex Sky-Dweller. The demand for the watch shows no signs of slowing down and in just a few short years since its release, the blue Sky-Dweller 326934 has become a true collector’s item and one of the most desirable modern Rolex watches in the world.