While it is Rolex’s sport watch lines that get much of the attention these days, many would argue that it is their Datejust and Day-Date watches that represent the quintessential Rolex timepiece.
The Rolex Datejust II ref. 116334 is luxurious and it is not overwhelming.
Everyday Luxury Watches
Rolex’s sport watch lines are designed for specific conditions and environments; however most Rolex owners are not cave explorers or commercial SCUBA divers, and many just need a reliable, versatile, and luxurious watch for everyday life. In this category, the Rolex Datejust and Day-Date lines truly excel. Their iconic and timeless designs contain highly practical feature-sets that make them perfect for nearly every setting imaginable.
There are many variations of a Datejust, here is one example Rolex “Thunderbird” Turn-O-Graph
The Unforgettable Datejust
First introduced in 1945 to celebrate the company’s 40th anniversary, the Rolex Datejust has remained largely unchanged throughout the many decades that it has been in production. Although it has seen a variety of movement upgrades and subtle design alterations over the years, the classic 36mm Datejust is still very much the same watch that it was when it was first released over seventy years ago.
A Rolex like the “Thunderbird” ref. 116261 is classic in design, yet has a history with military ties.
In 1956, Rolex released a new flagship watch: the Day-Date. Only available in 18-karat gold or platinum, Rolex’s Day-Date was the first watch to display both the date and the day of the week (spelt out in full), through windows in the surface of the dial. Much like the Datejust, the Day-Date line has changed very little throughout the years, and it has remained a constant offering in Rolex’s catalogue since its initial introduction.
This Everose Gold has a blend of platinum to retain its color and prevent oxydation.
Both the Datejust and Day-Date lines are available in a wide variety of bezel, dial, and bracelet configurations; however the Jubilee bracelet is only an option for the Datejust line, and the President bracelet is only available for the Day-Date. Additionally, while the Day-Date is only available in 18-karat gold or platinum, the Datejust can be purchased in stainless steel, solid 18-karat gold, or a combination of the two metals that Rolex calls Rolesor.
Other than the addition of a day display, and the different configuration options available from the factory, the Datejust and Day-Date are very similar watch lines. Both timepieces are of modest proportions, and both feature a date display at the 3 o’clock position, with a Cyclops magnification bubble on the crystal.
The President Day-Date 118235 in Everose Gold is sure to make its way to the party.
Neither the Datejust nor Day-Date possesses any additional features or complications that are specific to a particular sport or environment. While the programmable regatta countdown on the Yacht-Master II, and the helium-gas escape valve on the Sea-Dweller are highly impressive from a technological standpoint; very few owners of these watches actually find themselves in situations that require the use of these highly-specific functions.
Rolex Date-Date President ref. 118208 with diamond hour markers.
With practical feature sets, timeless designs, and 100 meters of water resistance, both the Datejust and Day-Date are highly versatile watches that are equally at-home in boardroom meetings, as they are at weekend poolside barbecues. While some prefer to have a sports watch as their everyday watch, the Datejust and the Day-Date are perfect for daily wear. This versatility is part of the reason why both watches have remained in production since their initial release, and why many would argue that they represent the quintessential Rolex timepiece.