Rolex Yacht Master Replica
History of the Rolex Yacht-Master
There are many conflicting stories about the history of the Rolex Yacht-Master models. I tried to investigate the information I got by doing a quick search on Google by typing Rolex Yacht-Master history but it wasn't really helpful. So instead of browsing several websites, I did my own research and found some very informative books about Rolex watches.
Rolex introduced some smaller editions of this watch in 1994. I can remember two actually, ref. 68628 and ref 69628 which were great for men with small wrists or even for ladies. They were available in gold as well as white and blue dial. The large 40mm watch was referred to as the Yacht-Master Jumbo while the smaller watches had Caliber 2135 inside for the movement.
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In 1999, Rolex introduced the Rolesium (steel/platinum) version of the series in Basel. The 40mm version had reference 16622 while the 35mm ref 168622 and ref 169622 for the ladies which was 29mm were all an instant hit. The popularity of the Yachtmaster could be compared to the success of the Daytona. There were so many on the waiting list which lasted for years and many famous personalities during that time wore the Rolex Yacht-Master.
I once read in a Magazine that Rolex planned to create a high-end version of the Submariner which was their diver's watch. The Submariner and Sea-Dweller were designed to be tool watches but they wanted the Yacht-Master to epitomize pure luxury.
But it was not until 2005 when the company introduced the Yacht-Master Rolesor which was Rolex's name for the combination of gold and steel. The full size versions had reference 16623 and had few dial combinations – mother of pearl, white, champagne, blue and brown and silver.
The Bezel is either platinum or gold on all combinations. The watch has no inlay, the whole bezel system is gold or platinum. If the watch gets scratched, it's going to be such an expensive accident.
But the good thing about the Yacht-Master replicas is that they aren't saleable for their list price (7200 Euro for Rolesium/ 7100 Euro for Rolesor/and 19,000 for the solid gold version). Generally speaking, collectors of Rolex watches aren't too fond of the YachtMaster watches because they look like blings. They would rather get practical or tool watches like the GMT, Sub or Sea Dweller. They don't want to spend a lot more for shiny gold or platinum. Why spend 7200 Euros when you can get a nice Rolex watch for 4500 that have the same features minus the platinum or gold accents?
As a result, you can buy a Yacht-Master replica in Canad for nearly the same price as a Rolex that is made of stainless steel. You can get a used Yachtmaster ref 16622 and ref 16623 for around 4500-5000 euros and they're in great condition. I got my 16622 with papers and receipt in 2007 for a really good price and wore it almost everyday. Its flat belly and bend lugs makes it an excellent everyday watch.
So to recap:
When shopping for Yacht-Master Replicas keep in mind that in 1992, the Yacht-Master ref 16628 in 18K gold was introduced. In 1994 Rolex launched the midsize and ladies models still in 18 karat gold. In 1999 they introduced the Rolesium ref 16622 which was a combination of stainless steel and platinum. And by 2005, they introduced the Yacht-Master Rolesor ref 16623 which was made of stainless steel and gold.
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