Launched in 1968, the Rolex Cellini collection has been the birthplace of the brand’s non-Oyster watches. Rolex named the collection after the Florentine goldsmith, sculptor and painter Benvenuto Cellini, known for his masterpieces created during the Renaissance, which are still studied and celebrated today.
The first Cellini watches were thin gold watches whose dials indicated the time driven by a hand-wound movement. They were markedly different from the fake Rolex Oyster watches of the era, which included models like the Submariner, GMT-Master, Day-Date, Date-just and Explorer. The “Oyster” designation in some Rolex watches refers to its water-resistant Oyster case. Cellini watches, by contrast, never had an Oyster case, nor were they designed to be water resistant.
The simplest modern Cellini watch is the Rolex Cellini Time Watch, which, as the name suggests, has three hands on the dial to indicate the hours, minutes and seconds. There are two reference models for Cellini Time: Cellini Time Reference. 50509 18K White Gold and 50505 18K Eve Rose Gold. Each model comes with a brown or black leather strap with a buckle in the same metal as the case.
The Rolex Cellini Time is available with a white or black dial, and both models feature oversized Roman numerals on four poles, as well as long stick-shaped hour markers divided by an internal minute scale. Inside the watch is the automatic and chronometer-certified Calibre 3132 movement. The Cellini Time retails for $15,200 (in white or everose gold), but can usually be purchased secondhand at a 20-30% discount. ??
The Rolex Cellini Dual Time watch allows the wearer to read the time in two time zones at the same time. The local time is indicated by the central hour/minute/second hands, while the second time zone is displayed on the subdial at 6 o’clock. Since the second time zone display uses a 12-hour clock instead of a 24-hour clock, Rolex integrates the day/night indication by displaying the sun or moon in a small window within the second time zone sub-dial.
The two Rolex Cellini Dual Hour models are white gold Cellini Dual Hour models. 50529 and Cellini Dual Hour in Everose gold. 50525. Both models are available with a black or silver dial with a guilloche ¡ §|Patterned top with distinctive elongated and split hour markers. The Rolex Cellini Two-Hour is powered by the self-winding Calibre 3180 movement, priced at $19,400.
Three years after redesigning the Cellini collection, Rolex has brought another surprise with the introduction of the Cellini Moon Phase. The Rolex Cellini Moonphase, which debuted at Baselworld 2017, is the first Rolex watch to feature a moonphase display since the 1950s.
Like all Cellini watches, the Rolex Cellini Moon Phase has a 39mm case, but is only available in 18-carat Everose gold. Therefore, there is only one version, Cellini Moonphase ref. 50535. The watch features a white lacquered dial with blue hands showing the date and the tip of a crescent moon pointing to the numbers around the dial. A blue enamel disc at 6 o’clock is used to display the moon phase of the current lunar cycle, and the moon itself is represented by a small meteorite disc. The Cellini Moon Phase built into the self-winding Calibre 3195, a unique Rolex watch priced at $26,750.
The Rolex Cellini collection is well-crafted, which is important for a brand known for over-engineering watches that are designed to be worn every day and last multiple times . Due to its elegance and sheer modernity, the Rolex Cellini should be praised for its elegant versatility. However, it often doesn’t get the attention it deserves due to its sibling’s overwhelming reputation in the replica Rolex catalog.
Due to its elegance and sheer modernity, the Rolex Cellini should be touted for its elegant versatility. Whether you ultimately want to add a Rolex Cellini to your collection is entirely a personal decision. However, there is no denying the fact that the Rolex Cellini is the brand’s most elegant and refined collection of watches, offering great value for money, especially when it comes to buying on the pre-owned market.
Having said that, we hope that the next time you see a fake Rolex Cellini, you at least take another look and see it as not just a replica watch, but an important part of Rolex’s history and brand identity.