Matte black Rolex Datejust Reimagined by MAD Paris
It's a classic reimagined.
The latest version of Rolex's Datejust 41 was revamped by MAD Paris, and while it's near impossible to improve upon an iconic watch, it seems up to the task with its latest update.
The datejust's silhouette has remained very much the same, but this particular Datejust is covered in a matte black finish, one that has become a signature of the French customization house in recent years. Inky blue dials contrast with the inky blue bezel and bracelet as they surround the watch. Its traditional black and white lettering is complemented by the white cobranding that can be found on the dial, which encases the hour marks with the exception of the date window. Its faceted black jewels at the hour marks are surrounded by faceted black jewels except for one exception.
In addition to the 41mm case, the 3235 caliber movement is housed within the 41mm case and is one of the most precise movements ever issued by Rolex, making it one of the most sought after timepieces in the watch world. All of this adds up to a watch that stays true to the original design while also infusing it with something that is quite futuristic.
It's not cheap, however. MAD's watch goes for $34,500, while a Rolex model with diamond hour markers in yellow gold and steel is $14,450. Those with the means and desire to change some of the most coveted watches in horology to suit their personal aesthetic have found MAD Paris to be the place to go.
Among its notable creations are the 'Rainbow' Rolex's Daytona and the 'Grand Fleur' engraved Audemars Piguet, both of which have revolutionized the watch industry.
In spite of this, customized watches have long been a thorn in the watchmaking industry's side. There were many brands who felt that Bamford Watch Department took their original creations and changed them without their permission when they started creating blacked-out creations of watches, including Rolex, in 2004. This was, of course, exactly what they did. Bamford has partnered with LVMH brands to create official customized pieces with Tag Heuer, Bulgari, and Zenith, as LVMH brands realized they couldn't fight them any longer. As a result, MAD’s version of Rolex will not come with Rolex warranties and services since the brand doesn't approve of customization of its watches.
It was the first self-winding and waterproof chronometer to display the date in a special window located at three o'clock when it was developed in 1945, thus giving it its name. This is the first self-winding and waterproof chronometer to display the date. As a result of its oyster case and fluted bezel, Cyclops lens over the date, and five-piece Jubilee bracelet, it has become a standard-bearer of watchmaking.
The good news is that you can purchase MAD's handsome one-off watch for half the price of the Rolex approved watch if you're willing to sacrifice your Rolex status for MAD's style.