ROLEX DATEJUST 'FATHER'S ROLEX, FATHER OF ALL ROLEX' LUEL MAGAZINE DEC. 2014
Many experienced vintage Rolex collectors usually wish to own a beautifully aged sports watch, so higher demands result in higher market value of these sports models. This market trend seems only natural because Rolex earned its fame mostly thanks to these durable and functional sport watches.
Considering the current sky-high popularity, it may be surprising for you to know that Rolex watches became officially available in the Korean market not so long ago. History of Rolex in Korea is believed to have started when a small amount of them were circulated through the PX's of US military bases immediately after the Korean War.
It was only after the 1960s that more general public could have a chance to come by Rolex watches. As the volume of trade and people-to-people exchanges rapidly increased with Vietnam War and Middle East construction boom, many homecoming soldiers and engineers bought Rolex watches as souvenirs as well as for their cash value. However they could only afford one Rolex watch or two, so they had to make sure it was the most popular and representative model.
Think about it, if you have to buy only one Rolex watch for your lifetime and if you can never get another domestically, would you dare to choose splendid sports watch? There was a good reason for seeking after luxurious, glittering Rolex models rather than sports watches. As a result, apart from a small amount of golden Day-date, Rolex Datejust enjoyed overwhelming popularity among Koreans, which led to today's vintage Rolex market predominated by the Datejust models.
Maybe not so much appreciated as sports models, Rolex Datejust has always been on the vanguard of all Rolex family, and helped Rolex achieve its prestigious status of today. Since its birth to mark the 40th anniversary of Rolex brand, Datejust has insisted on the 36mm case for the past 70 years (except for the recent Datejust II model). Being the one and only Rolex model available in all precious metals and stones, it carries the Perpetual automatic movement as well as easy-to-read date window.
Without exaggeration, successful settling down of the Datejust served as an important foundation for many different sports variations. Its elegant face and demure luster from the bracelet is still keeping the Datejust on the top of our fathers' wishlists. Sometimes I can see in a vintage Datejust how rough and intensive its previous owner's life was - the case that no longer shines and the worn-out, slack bracelet tell us a personal history in a million words of silence.
After reading this article I suggest you look inside your father's desk drawers, so you may find an old Rolex Datejust in a long oblivious sleep. With a little bit of tweak it may come back to life once again on your wrist.
In the above photo are the most iconic Datejust of all time, Ref. 1601 manufactured between 1960 and 1979. Featuring stainless steel case, 5-row Jubilee bracelet and platinum or gold fluted bezel, this model is one of the most commonly available Datejusts in the market, which means it is a truly time-tested, most reliable model to consider for your future collection.
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