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Rolex Day-Date Ref. 1802 - Turquoise 'Stella' Dial

Sale price$56,850.00 USD

When the Day-Date was released in 1956, it was the only complicated Rolex for sale. Hard to believe, but people didn’t want Rolex’s previous attempts at complicated wristwatches. All of that changed when President Dwight D. Eisenhower was spotted wearing the Rolex, and the watch became known as ‘The President’. An internationally known symbol of success and prestige, the Rolex Day-Date was available for many years on a strap or matching solid gold bracelet.

However, this isn't your run of the mill Day-Date...

The piece that we have here features a highly elusive dial that is part of a sub-family of Day-Dates produced with what collectors call, 'Stella Dials.' It is believed that these colorful dials were named after the famous artist Frank Stella to honor his vibrant paintings, or another theory: named after the Latin word for star which is also “Stella.” These dials are as rare as they are beautiful to behold and were sold for a very limited time, in part due to the complexity to produce them. They were handmade by artisans who painstakingly applied many layers of lacquer, which give these dials their iconic depth. The process was so complex, that many dials cracked during manufacturing leading to their rarity.

This example dates to circa 1973 and features a fantastic, unpolished case with a matching 'President' bracelet and a turquoise 'Stella' dial within. Another interesting and noteworthy detail of this piece found only on the Ref. 1802, is the smooth polished yellow gold bezel  — a rare find on any Day-Date. It also has a Spanish day indicator.

Although not a perfect example, you might call this piece a 'wearer' — something that you don't have to worry about enjoying on your wrist!

Never in short demand, Stella-dialed pieces have always been coveted as some of the more collectible vintage Rolexes, full stop.

*Some marks or spots on the dial are reflections or dust on the crystal and are due to high intensity strobe lighting used while photographing. They are not actually on the watch or visible in natural lighting.

Yellow Gold 1973 Automatic Dress

"As collectors themselves, Oliver and Clarke are on a mission to make buying vintage watches as painless as possible."

"The company focuses on good prices for its pieces, elite customer service and full transparency."

"The appointment-only space is inviting, with comfortable seating areas and exposed brick walls."

From Rolex & Patek Philippe, to Cartier & Audemars Piguet. As collectors first, we love the small details that separate the Submariner from Daytona and Calatrava from Royal Oak. This is why you'll find our curated assortment spans decades of generations of models and brands. We believe that watches don't just tell time, they tell history - and life is too short to wear a boring watch.

Oliver & Clarke