What brand of watches do you consider the most expensive? When asked this question, the most answers appear to be the Rolex watches. Rolex watches come to a lot of folks’ minds when they think about outstanding watches that display wealth status and success.
Watch enthusiasts are willing to pay any amount to get their hands on the most expensive Rolex watches of all time.
Although most of them can’t afford it, they can always go for a less costly version of this prestigious watch brand.
Over time, the Rolex brand of watches has become one of the most best-selling, trust and investment-worthy luxurious brands that lots of people are willing to patronize.
Even as time comes and passes by, this brand will still stand out among other brands of wristwatches.
Let us look at the 10 most expensive Rolex watches in the world, why it’s tempting to get one, and what you need to know before getting one. Discover more about Rolex watches here.
Is It Smart To Buy A Rolex Watch?
There are many things we wish to have and some we crave to have immediately. Money doesn’t grow on trees, it’s not something you can get easily, and even when gotten its used to sort after a lot of our needs.
There is a clear difference between things you need to have and things you just want to satisfy your desire, show off, or for other reasons.
While we are at this, is it smart to consider getting a Rolex watch? What could be your reason? You can’t argue that you need to know the time because we have clocks on our walls and time on our smartphones, which we take almost everywhere.
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So why then is it smart to buy a Rolex watch?
Rolex watches are very expensive and cannot be afforded by many. Most people buy these expensive Rolex watches to brag about their success and make people see that they have made a fortune.
This is not the case for some; you might think this applies to every person getting expensive kinds of stuff for themselves.
Most people get expensive Rolex watches, clothes, or shoes for themselves to feel good about themselves. They also do it to look presentable and capable in certain situations.
Another reason they get this expensive Rolex is because of its quality. Unlike other watches, this particular brand of watches is said to be designed and made with the best quality of materials.
The watches can work and tick accurately for more extended periods over the years than the ordinary watches that can stop functioning after some time.
This excellent lasting quality, fine designs, and good works make it attractive and expensive, yet clients often tend to patronize it.
The reason we all know of getting a Rolex watch is a display of wealth. Of course, these expensive Rolex watches make you stand out and be recognized in public or anywhere you find yourself.
People get amazed at such a person wearing the latest brand of Rolex or the most expensive Rolex watch. Not minding these reasons, ensure not to buy a fake Rolex watch and know the features you should expect when buying one.
How Long Is The Rolex Waiting List?
Unlike ordinary wristwatches, you can’t just walk into a store and order to get a Rolex watch. You have to join the waiting list. The Rolex waiting list is an arbitrary order in which clients are ranked to receive new Rolex watches as they come in store.
Depending on your rank on the waiting list, it can take longer or shorter periods for you to receive your Rolex watch.
Some clients don’t have this patience of waiting so they tend to pay more than the Rolex actual price to skip the waiting process and get theirs before others.
Some dealers handle their waiting list according to the rank while some are just interested in any form of increasing their income.
With these situations, the Rolex waiting list does not guarantee that you will receive a new Rolex even after joining the list. Through the list, it can take months or years before you can receive a new Rolex watch.
Most Expensive Rolex Watches in 2022
Rolex Bao Dai
At the Phillips Auction House, the Rolex Bao Dai was sold for $5.1 million in 2017. It was first owned by Emperor Nguyễn Phύc VĨnh Thụy, the last Emperor of Vietnam as of then. The Emperor requested the rarest, finest, and most expensive Rolex watch ever made in 1952.
During his visit to Geneva, the Bao Dai was offered to him when he came across a popular Rolex retailer named Chronometrie Philippe Beguin.
In 2002, the watch was auctioned off by the Nguyen family. The Bao Dai Rolex watch stands out as the only Rolex watch with diamond markers set around its dial.
The Bao Dai Rolex watch has five diamond markers embedded under its even hours and a yellow gold oyster case. The unique features of the expensive Rolex Bao Dai have made it the third-highest-priced watch that has ever been sold from Rolex collections.
Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona
In 2017, Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona became the most expensive Rolex watch ever auctioned off in history. It was auctioned off by Phillips Auction house. It rose to a price of $17.8 million in that same year.
This most expensive Rolex watch was named after the famous actor, Paul Newman, and the unique story behind the watch made it popular and outstanding.
The watch was made visible in most of Paul Newman’s movies and was said to be given to him by his wife with the words “Drive Carefully Me” engraved at the back of the case.
This most expensive Rolex watch has amazing features, including three sub-dials with block markers, with the second sub-dial found at the 9 o’clock point marked with 15, 30, 45, and 60 as indicators.
The watch possesses other features such as a 300 units-per-hour stainless steel bezel, an 18,000 beats-per-hour-movements, and a tachymeter scale attached to the bezel.
1942 Rolex Antimagnetique
This is another expensive Rolex watch sold at the Phillips Auction House about five years ago. It was sold for $2.5 million in Geneva Switzerland. Regardless of its original date of release, this Rolex watch has continued to grow in value over time.
It was originally gifted to different drivers and racing teams as a celebration of their victory. As of that time, Rolex was a sponsor of different racing competitions and served as a celebration price to the winners.
The famous British motorist, Sir Malcolm Campbell, the Rolex watch, was also worn during one of his competitions.
The 1942 Rolex Antimagnetique is a timepiece with amazing features such as a split-seconds chronograph, raised pink gold-colored Arabic and baton hour markers; a black tachymeter scale in the dial, and an oversized case with a satin finish and blue telemeter.
Rolex The Unicorn Oyster Cosmography
In 2018, the Rolex Unicorn Oyster Cosmography was sold for $5.9 million as one of the most expensive Rolex watches. This watches brand has almost all been produced in stainless steel or yellow gold design.
Back then in 1970, the watch was regarded as the most expensive Rolex watch ever sold. It was manufactured with luxurious white metal as requested by a German retailer.
Its heavy white gold bracelet and black sigma made it stand out among the rest. Also, it comes with a unique white gold case, a black background, and silver graphics that make the watch glow beautifully. It is said to be the only white gold Cosmograph that Rolex has ever made.
Marlon Brando’s Rolex GMT-Master
This expensive Rolex watch was sold at the Philips game-changer event in 2019 for a price of $1.92 million. Its name came about as a result of the famous academy award winner, Marlon Brando, who wore this watch during the famous film Apocalypse now.
The watch contains an engraved name “M. Brando”, it was said to have been engraved by the actor himself.
Now, the watch has no bezel as it was asked to be removed by the actor during the filming of Apocalypse Now in the Philippines.
It is fitted on a simple black rubber strap with luminous hour markers and hands with a golden binge shine. This particular expensive Rolex also has a mark IV dial with a tiny oval at the base of its coronet.
Eric Clapton’s Cosmography Daytona
This is another expensive Rolex watch sold for more than a million dollars. It was sold in Geneva during one of the auctions organized by Philips. This watch was named after Sir Eric Clapton, a famous English musician, singer, and songwriter.
It is listed among the rare and famous watches around the globe. It is the only piece of its kind to feature subsidiary dials that are not in black.
It comes with white printing and possesses a silver finish as the original silver dial plate. It is also called the “All-White Cosmograph Albino”.
Rolex Stelline Gold
In 2015, this fine Rolex watch was sold for $895,000. It was the fourth most expensive Rolex watch sold in Geneva in the Christie’s auction in 2012.
The stelline gold model was released in 1950, featuring a jubilee bracelet and in-house automatic movement.
This Rolex watch also contains the Rolex’s genetic codes with its oyster case, a triple calendar, and a moon phase display which is housed in a water-resistant case.
It was the first of its kind to have these outstanding features with a hard durable case enclosing the blue numerals and the day and date apertures.
Rolex GMT Master II Ice
Listed among the most expensive Rolex watches, the renowned football star, Cristiano Ronaldo, wore it during the 14th Dubai International Sports Conference. It is considered the most expensive watch released by the brand in the last few years.
When it was released, its first retail price was about $485,350 in 2007. It was nicknamed “Master Ice” by watch enthusiasts due to the gleaming silver and diamond-encrusted exterior it possesses.
It consists of 30 Carats of brilliantly cut diamonds and an 18k white gold oyster case that features a trip lock winding crown and a screw-down case back.
In addition to the watch’s outstanding features, it comes with a caliber 3186 self-automatic winding movement and 31 jewels, all enclosed in a 100-meter waterproof case.
The hands of the watch are lined with black, in order to increase readability. This expensive Rolex watch has luminous hour markers and a shining white dial which displays the date aperture at the 3 o’clock mark and a GMT 24-hour time zone.
1967 Jack Nicklaus Rolex Day-Date
In 2019, the Jack Nicklaus Rolex day-date was auctioned at $1.22 million at the Phillips Auction house. It was auctioned off for the benefit of the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation and 100% of its proceeds went to the support of children’s care all over the world.
Although not the most expensive Rolex watch, it was designed as a sports watch and launched in 1956. It features the first-ever date and day displayed and spelled out completely on its dial.
It has an 18k yellow gold case paired with a colored pie pan style dial, an extremely rare color to see in watches. The Rolex watch also has narrowed baton hour markers that are reminiscent of golf tees.
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Wow Factor Cosmograph Daytona In Rainbow Colors.
Like the name, this expensive Rolex watch has multi-colors and is studded with gems. It contains a rose gold strap and case, a bejeweled rainbow 18-carat bezel, bidirectional self-winding, and a 72-hour power reserve.
Also, this piece features a diamond-encrusted dial with rainbow-jeweled index hour indicators, an oyster diamond-stud bracelet, and a trio of rose gold sub-dials. The wow factor Cosmograph Daytona has its price starting at $555,555.
What Can I Buy Instead Of A Rolex?
When you can’t afford a Rolex watch, find it difficult to get one or can’t wait for the waiting list. Alternative watches possess similar functions and aesthetics as the expensive Rolex watch.
You can buy these watches at a price less costly than that of the Rolex watch. They include:
- The Grand Seiko Sport Collection SBGA229 (Submarine Alternative)
- Tudor Heritage Ranger Ref. M79910 (Explorer Alternative)
- TAG Heuer Aquaracer Calibre 7 GMT Ref. WAY201F.BA0927 (GMT-Master II Alternative)
- Longines Record Automatic Chronometer Ref. L28214116 (Date Just Alternative)
- Zenith Chronomaster EI Primero Ref. 03.2040.400/69.M2040 (Daytona Alternative)
- *NEW* Zenith Chronomaster Sport Ref.03.3100, 3600 (Best Rolex Daytona Alternative).
Frequently Asked Questions On 10 most Expensive Rolex Watches In The World
What Is The Highest Price Of Rolex Watch?
The Most Expensive Rolex watch, Paul Newman’s Exotic Rolex Daytona has the highest price of $17,8m when auctioned at the Phillips Auction gallery in New York, 2017.
What is the cheapest Rolex?
The cheapest Rolex watch is the 36mm oyster perpetual which costs a sum of $5,800 MSRP.
Who owns the most expensive Rolex watch in this century?
The famous talented footballer, Cristiano Ronaldo owns the world’s most expensive Rolex watch which costs about £371,000.
Which country is best to buy a Rolex?
The best country to buy a Rolex watch is in Europe. This is because you can buy Rolex watches there tax-free thereby avoiding the high VAT that other countries have.
How can you tell if a Rolex watch is real?
An original Rolex watch has a serial number stamped between the watch lugs at the 6 o’clock position. To find this, you will need to remove the bracelet. Also, an authentic Rolex watch should be able to display a slight glow around the edges when you hold it to the light.
Rolex watches are often handmade and take longer periods to produce. These watches are durable for many years and are taken as an investment to be sold later on.
If you are planning to get a Rolex wristwatch, find a good dealer willing to sell out without being consumed by greed if not you might end up with a fake watch or waiting on the waiting list for a long period and might not get the Rolex watch.