Somewhat unloved compared to other Rolex options, the current Cellini range has been around since the mid-2010s.
Posited as a sober, refined addition to their collection of timepieces, the Cellini Prince was introduced in 1928 and was the first Rolex manufactured in quantity to earn chronometric certification.
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Despite the storied history, it’s never been the most popular timepiece, despite a number of interesting models from recent years.
We’ve come up with a rundown listing three of the top styles from the Rolex Cellini range, as well as considering the watches from an investment perspective.
Rolex Cellini: Top 3 Styles
Inspired by Italian Renaissance artist, Benvenuto Cellini, this classic collection;
‘Combines the best of Rolex know-how and its high standards of perfection with an approach that heightens watchmaking heritage in its most timeless form. The lines of the Cellini models are sober and refined, the materials noble, the finishings luxurious: every detail respects the codes of the art of watchmaking.’
Despite the marketing spiel, it is an accurate description of exactly what the Rolex Cellini has to offer, in terms of overall design and feel. The Cellini collection was re-released in 2014, but is it worth the considerable outlay?
Here’s a list containing three of the best models on the market, which should be helpful if you’re hoping to see a good ROI in the future.
Rolex Cellini Moonphase
We’ll begin with the best known Rolex Cellini variant, instantly recognizable due to the addition of a ‘moonphase module’ on the face.
The Cellini Moonphase displays the date around the circumference of the dial, via a center hand with a crescent moon at its tip. This model uses a self-winding mechanical movement manufactured by Rolex, whose ‘patented moonphase module is astronomically accurate for 122 years’.
It’s arguably the pick of the bunch from the Cellini range, and it’s the version you’re most likely to see adorning wrists while you’re out and about. The white dial is lacquered; the blue moonphase dial is finished in enamel, and the moon itself is formed from a tiny slice of meteorite.
It’s not the first horological Rolex watch, but the others are rare and markedly more expensive than the norm.
Rolex Cellini Geneve
The base model is as understated as you’d expect, with an uncluttered face and small numbers around the edge. It’s also known as the ‘Cellini Time’. The ‘Cellini Date’ adds a dial for the current day.
Then there’s a ‘Dual Time’ version, with a simultaneous display of two time zones, which isn’t especially handy for anyone with a smartphone or a laptop but will probably be of some use to a niche customer base.
Both are only available with a black or brown embroidered and stitched leather strap, which comes with an 18 ct gold buckle. In practice, it’s easy to see why many would-be owners tend to give it a miss. It’s so subtle, that it ends up being ignored.
Rolex Cellini Danaos
An older model that you won’t be able to purchase new, the Cellini Danaos was released in the mid-2000s. Either the 4233 or 4243 are slightly more popular, but they don’t stand out compared to the best that Rolex has to offer.
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What you will notice is the large numbering across the face, which can look good depending on the contrasting colors. The ‘6’ is typically bolded, completing a classic look.
Rolex Cellini: Values
Values will depend on the year of release, as well as the overall condition of the timepiece. Rolex Cellini prices tend to range from around $4,000 for a pre-owned model, and more than $20,000 at the higher end.
However, there isn’t much interest in the average Rolex Cellini. Most collectors would arguably prefer something slightly more fashionable, and there isn’t much to help it to stand out from the rest of the crowd.
Of course, the value will depend on which year it came out in, but there are lots of aftermarket models to be found. You may be able to strike a deal, depending on the seller.
Ranges such as the Cellini Danaos, the Cellini Cestello, and the Cellini Quartz are no longer made, and the majority are fairly affordable.
Rolex Cellini: Investment Outlook
When it comes to prestige, it’s hard to do better than the average Rolex range. However, the Cellini is the exception to the rule, unless you’re looking at a Moonphase version, which was the first Rolex to come with a horological extra since the 1950s.
Almost any Rolex is worth a significant amount on the second-hand market, but it is worth it from an investment perspective? Probably not, unless you’re hoping to see a significant increase in interest over the next couple of years or so. As a current model, aftermarket options aren’t especially expensive, unless you look to classic editions or unique options such as the Moonphase.
2020 Cellini versions aren’t the most popular by any stretch of the imagination, and it’s worth remembering that they’ve already discontinued the range once. That didn’t really cause a large uptick in sales or value, so it’s hard to see why they would do so in the future.
If you’re on the market for a watch that you won’t see very often, and that still benefits from strong brand awareness, it’s not a bad choice, while some models are cheap when you factor in the high build quality. However, we’d look to others, such as the Rolex Oyster for a more stable investment.
Despite being ignored, it’s fair to say that Cellini watches are never going to be cheaper. This means that there’s a decent scope for profit in the future if they suddenly become more fashionable over the next few years. It could prove to be a canny purchase, but there are better options to look out for.
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