Although I am perfectly prepared to admit that it is unlikely we all have an undiscovered, rare Rolex GMT Bakelite nestling in a bottom drawer or otherwise, what I have always found to be exciting is the sheer possibility of it.
Unlike a hidden Rembrandt, which lets face, requires a certain historical association with significant wealth, a Rolex watch from the 1960’s wasn’t so far out of the norm as to be unheard of. And life being the chaotic unplanned journey it often is, it’s not beyond the realms that the box of nic nacs your grandfather left you just might contain a hidden horological gem. (Go on, admit it! A little part of you is doing a mental stock take as you read!)
Which brings me to this months’ little gem. A rare and altogether stunning Rolex GMT Master 6542 Bakelite from the mid 60’s. The kind of watch it is easy to imagine might have adorned the wrist of a transatlantic pilot back in the golden ago of travel. Although originally aimed at the Pan Am pilots when launch in the mid 50’s the GMT became an iconic ‘must have’ for any self-respecting captain and flight officer from the 1960’s onwards.
What is particular arresting about this piece is the sheer presence of the thing! If you knew nothing about watches and saw this in a batch of similar quality timepieces I think you’d be hard pressed to take your eyes off it. I’m often questioned on the variation of prices on what seem to be similar watches and it’s an accusation that can be hard to explain. (Why am I paying more for an original imperfection that was later corrected? You just are!)
In this instance you are undoubtedly paying for the scarcity value of the piece. Although the GMT has been with us for decades the 6542 was only manufactured for a relatively short period and so any piece is scarce to begin with. Add to that fact that even fewer were made in solid 18ct gold and fewer still retain the fragile Bakelite bezel then what I am pleased to be able to offer you is a truly rare piece and one that to many Rolex collectors is regarded as a Grail watch. A powerful combination of events and rarity that has pushed the price of this particular watch north of £150,000!
Whilst I imagine the next owner won’t be wearing the incredible watch down the local pub, the beauty is, as always with a Rolex tool watch, you could wear this anywhere safe in the knowledge it will never let you down.
Isn’t it time you had that clearout you’ve been promising to do forever?