The quintessential luxury dress watch, few timepieces are as revered as the Rolex Day-Date. In fact, so impeccable is this Rolex watch that it has been the go-to watch for countless celebrities, global leaders, business trailblazers, and even presidents for more than half a century. It even goes by its nickname, the Rolex President. Let’s find out how the Rolex Day-Date President came to be. But more importantly, why the Day-Date picked up its illustrious moniker.
While it’s true that presidents have worn the Day-Date, that’s not the only reason it’s known as the Rolex President. When Rolex inaugurated the Day-Date in 1956, it was presented on a brand new style bracelet. This was dubbed as the President bracelet. Characterized by its semi-circular links, the President bracelet certainly adds an even dressier touch to an already formal wristwatch.
So the combination of the bracelet’s official name along with its status among political and business presidents led the way for the (almost official) Rolex President nickname.
In addition to its bracelet, the most important component of the Rolex Day-Date President is, of course, the pair of windows on the dial. These windows indicate the day of the week and the date of the month. The Rolex President was the first watch to have the full name of the week displayed on the dial, along with the date. These calendar functions are super practical to have on hand.
Also vital to the Rolex Day-Date President model is its material. As the most luxurious dress watch in Rolex’s lineup, the Day-Date President is exclusively available in 18k gold or platinum. Naturally, there are plenty of diamond Rolex President watches too.
Throughout the Day-Date’s 60-year history, the famous Swiss watchmaking giant has produced four main versions of the Rolex Day-Date President.
The first and most traditional is the Day-Date 36, which as its name suggests, sports a 36mm Oyster case. An absolute classic, the Day-Date 36 remains as the most popular Rolex President mens watch option today. Plus, with so many references, dial options, gem settings, and metal choices, the 36mm Rolex President is also the most varied.
It may be surprising, but even Rolex jumped on the quartz bandwagon in the 1970s with the Oysterquartz. Along with Datejust Oysterquartz watches, Rolex also made Day-Date Oysterquartz timepieces in yellow and white gold. It’s interesting to note that the 36mm Oyster case of the Day-Date Oysterquartz models came with an integrated bracelet rather than the President bracelet. Oysterquartz watches are no longer in production, but the secondary market has several vintage Oysterquartz models to choose from.
The third Rolex Day-Date President model, the Day-Date II, made its debut in 2008. With its bigger 41mm case, this was Rolex’s answer to prevailing trends for larger men’s watches. However, Rolex actually discontinued the model in 2015, even though many were happy with the bigger Rolex President watch. This was to make way for the newest Day-Date collection.
The most recent Rolex President model is the Day-Date 40. With its slightly smaller and slimmer 40mm Oystercase and thinner lugs, this is a very elegant Rolex President indeed. It perfectly balances a larger size along with a refined touch.
There are so many Rolex Day-Date President models out there to choose from. Settling on the right candidate may be tough. But whether you go 36mm or 40mm, vintage or modern, yellow, white, or rose gold or even platinum, really any Rolex President is a great choice. And now, you can view these great choices of used Rolex President timepieces here at BeckerTime.com. We welcome you to visit today.
quintessential luxury dress watch, few timepieces are as revered as the Rolex Day-Date. In fact, so impeccable is this Rolex watch that it has been the go-to watch for countless celebrities, global leaders, business trailblazers, and even presidents for more than half a century. It even goes by its nickname, the Rolex President. Let’s find out how the Rolex President came to be. But more importantly, why the Day-Date picked up its illustrious moniker.
Our Rolex Day-Date facts take us back over 60 years. It was then when Rolex was on the verge of giving up on producing complicated timepieces. Their first Day-Dates introduced, called “moonphase watches,” were not selling or attracting any interest. However, Rolex came up with a niche model that soon became one of its most distinctive watches.
In 1956, the first watch that spelled out the days of the week in 26 languages was born, ref. 6511. This Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date was a brand new type of calendar watch. The day and date was visible in two separate apertures of the dial. In addition, the date and day of the week would turn instantaneously at midnight. In fact, Rolex subjected the Chronometer to the highest precision tests, and the Oyster case was 100% air tight to water and impurities. Rolex Day-Date President facts note that the earlier Day-Dates were water resistant to only 165 feet, while the more current models are water resistant to depths of 330 feet.
Subsequently, inevitable popularity developed around this niche model offering its wearer distinction and prestige. Besides, the Day-Date was only available in 18K gold or platinum. As a result, this successfully positioned Rolex to a new level in the marketplace.
It had been rumored that the first Rolex given to then President Eisenhower was a Day-Date “President” watch. Yet, the facts reveal this rumor was false. The first Rolex given to the President was actually a solid gold Datejust, ref. 6305. However, Mr. Eisenhower was not the first American President to wear a Rolex watch. President Roosevelt sported one for several years. In addition, Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, and Ford, to name a few, were proud wearers of Rolex Day-Date watches. The Rolex Day-Date President facts lead us to the origination of its name – Because the Day-Date has earned its reputation on the wrists of many world leaders, particularly American presidents, this timepiece has become known as the Rolex Day-Date President watch.
In 1972, Rolex added the “hack” feature that enabled the second hand to stop completely when the crown was fully extended. This would enable the wearer to reset the time with better accuracy.
The late 1970’s introduced the “Single Quick Set” feature. This feature solved the lengthy problem of setting the date function, but not the day. In the late 1980’s, Rolex introduced the “Double Quick Set” feature. This feature allowed the wearer to quickly set the day and date.
Today, Rolex offers a wide variety of Day-Date models. In fact, you can find these authentic, elegant watches at BeckerTime in 18K yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, or platinum. While some styles are very basic, stunning options with diamonds and other precious gems are also available. Needless to say, the Rolex Day-Date President watch remains synonymous with success and marks a distinguished milestone in one’s lifetime.
Rolex fans often wonder why Rolex doesn’t manufacture more complicated watches – most models they produce are of the standard three-hand variety. The truth is, Rolex has produced very complicated watches in their past – they just didn’t sell particularly well for Rolex. Their moonphase watches languished in jewelers cases. Even their early chronographs sold poorly. It wasn’t until 1956 and the introduction of the Day-Date that Rolex produced a complicated watch which really resonated with the public.
The watch featured a window at the 12 o’clock position which displayed the day of the week, and synchronized perfectly with the day of the month window at 3 o’clock. The Day-Date also featured a brand new “President” bracelet and an elevated price tag which placed Rolex in the same category as competitors Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin. Despite the bracelet name, the Day-Date did not become (unofficially) known as the “President” or “Presidential” until a Day-Date was given to US President Dwight Eisenhower by Rolex.
The Day-Date would soon replace the Datejust as the Rolex flagship watch and become a landmark acquisition time piece synonymous with success worldwide – the day of the week wheel can be ordered in any one of 26 different languages. It is also available in the following precious metals: Yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, and platinum.
|1956||Rolex introduces the 6511 Day-Date.|
|1957||Rolex replaces the 6511 with the externally identical 6611 featuring the new Rolex Caliber 1055.|
|1958||Rolex introduces the Day-Date reference 1803.|
|1969||Rolex introduces an integrated “concealed clasp” into the President bracelet.|
|1972||Rolex adds the “hack” second hand feature to the Day-Date which allows the user to stop the second hand when the crown is fully extended.|
|1978||Rolex adds the “quick set” date function as well as the sapphire crystal with model reference 18038.|
|1988||Rolex adds the “Double Quick-Set” feature to the Rolex Day-Date with the model 18238.|
|2000||olex improves the President bracelet with solid links, making it much heavier and less prone to “bracelet stretch” seen in pre-2000 Day-Date models with hollow link bracelets. Rose gold returns as an option for the Day-Date, and a domed sapphire crystal is also introduced.|
|2008||Rolex debuts the Day Date II (a larger version of the classic Day Date) for the 100 year anniversary.|