Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Complete History Of Rolex Conquering Mount Everest [Part 1 of 8]

60th Anniversary Celebration

I wrote this Rolex history story 4 years ago, and am republishing it on this 60th anniversary of this amazing human achievement. 

Sixty years ago today, two men, both wearing Rolex wristwatches, changed the world of exploration forever, when they were the first to conquer the unconquerable, by summiting Mt. Everest. This is their brilliant story:

The Complete History
Rolex Conquers Mount Everest
[Part 1 0f 8]

Tenzing Norgay & Sir Edmund Hillary Conquer Mount Everest
With Rolex Watches On Their Wrist

We must not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we began and to know the place for the first time. – T. S. Elliot


I must admit when I set out to write this story, I had no idea how complicated and time consuming it would be. There was so much fascinating detail to capture in this story, and in the months and years to come I am certain I will update and add to the story many times.

As a historian and writer, I wanted to do more than give you a list of dated bullet points with photos. I wanted to actually take you to Nepal and take you up Mount Everest, which I feel I have achieved. I also wanted to let you stand in Tenzing Norgay's shoes and Sir Edmund Hillary's shoes to see things from their unique perspective. Enjoy the trip!!!

On Top of The World

Many of us have seen the classic National Geographic photo below of Sir Edmund Hillary and his Sherpa, Tenzing Norgay near the top of Everest.

There are many unanswered questions surrounding their epic conquest of Everest, like whether they were wearing Rolex watches under their jackets in this photo. In this article I will do my best to shed as much light as I can on this amazing story of human ingenuity, achievment and perseverance, as well as two men reaching the highest highs and the lowest lows.

It Was A Very Good Year

Let's go back in time to 1953 and take a look around. The world was starting to bounce back from World War II and Queen Elizabeth II was crowned Queen of England at Buckingham Palace as seen in the Life photo below from the coronation.

Ironically, news of the successful conquering of Everest by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached Britain on the very day of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation.

1953 was a glorious year of optimism where anything seemed possible. As the world embarked upon the second half of the twentieth century, a whole new modern world began to emerge. The world entered into a truly modern epoch where everything began to change quickly, and humanity began to freely dream again. The only limitation was imagination.

In 1953 Dwight Eisenhower was the President of The United States and of course he was wearing his beloved yellow gold Rolex that had been given to him as a gift from Rene-Paul Jeanneret who was the director of Rolex. This Rolex was no ordinary Rolex, it was the 150,000th Officially Certified Swiss Chronometer that Rolex made.

1953 was a very interesting and promising year. Elvis Presley was still in high school and the Space age had arrived–and with it, America's love for the automobile culminated in the 1953 Corvette which had beautiful lines like nothing that had ever come before it.

Speaking of beautiful lines, 1953 was the year that Hugh Hefner launched Playboy magazine, which, in its debut issue, featured this stunningly gorgeous photo of the young Marilyn Monroe–The sexual revolution was also underway.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pierce Brosnan: Another James Bond Actor Wearing Rolex Stainless Steel Rolex Datejust...

...Rolex Coolness...

Pierce Brosnan
Another James Bond Actor Wearing Rolex
Stainless Steel Rolex Datejust

We seem to examine James Bond Rolex news and history so frequently on Jake's Rolex World, perhaps I should change the name to Jake's James Bond Rolex Blog!?!

If you are a regular reader of Jake's Rolex World, or a James Bond Rolex fan, you will really get a kick out of this photo of former James Bond Actor, Pierce Brosnan sporting a stainless steel Rolex Datejust on a Jubilee Bracelet. After all, the supreme irony is Pierce Brosnan was the first James Bond to break the mold of James Bond wearing Rolex.

Instead Pierce Brosnan wore an Omega and Daniel Craig followed in his footsteps. Some die-hard Rolex/James Bond believed this move was sacrosanct. Well, the interesting news is that Pierce Brosnan went back to Rolex in 2007 when he posed for this Aquascutum ad. By the way, this photo makes it official, that EVERY ACTOR THAT PLAYED JAMES BOND HAS WORN A ROLEX AT SOME TIME IN THEIR LIFE!!!

Of course you can learn everything about James Bond Rolex History or learn just about Pierce Brosnan as James Bond on Jake's Rolex World. In the future on Jake's Rolex World, I will be publishing much, much, much more fascinating James Bond Rolex History, so stay tuned...

Sunday, May 26, 2013

John Goldberger Vanity Fair Article

...Rolex Coolness...

John Goldberger
Vanity Fair Article
For The Love of the Rolex Milgauss

My good pal, John Golberger, who lives in Italy, wrote this article for Vanity Fair, where he discusses the appeal of the Rolex Milgauss. John Goldberger is the author of many amazing horological books, including 100 Superlative Rolex Watches.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Brian Williams: NBC Nightly News Anchor...

...Rolex Coolness...

Brian Williams
NBC Nightly News Anchor & Managing Editor
...An Amazing Career with Rolex Keeping His Time...

Brain Williams has been the NBC Nightly News Anchor since 2004, and he has been a big Rolex fan for a long time. In the photo below taken by Matthais Clamer he is wearing a no-date Rolex Submariner. Brain Williams is extremely respected by viewers and a prominent observer dubbed him as "the Walter Cronkite of the 21st century."

In these next images, Brian Williams is sporting a stainless steel Rolex Daytona with a black dial as well as one with a white dial.

In the next image, Brain Williams is wearing a white dial Rolex Daytona.

In this next image we see Brain Williams wearing his rose gold Rolex Daytona.

In the next two photos, Brian Williams is wearing a Stainless Steel Rolex Datejust with the Jubilee bracelet, as well as a Stainless Rolex GMT with a Coke bezel.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Rolex Magazine Ad Photoshop Competition

...Photoshop Fun...

Magazine Ad Design Competition

Recently, a daily reader of Jake's Rolex World named Mark Wright–located in the U.K.– sent me an email with the first mocked-up Rolex Homage Ad pictured below and said:

Hi Jake,

Was tinkering around in Photoshop and in homage to the Rolex Ad's of old, created this. Thought it looked pretty cool and maybe something you may post for me on your sight.

Fantastic Website by the way. I visit each day to get my fix.

Kind Regards,
Mark Wright
United Kingdom

I responded to Mark, and mentioned it was a great idea. Over the years, I have spent countless hours restoring and publishing hundreds of cool vintage Rolex ads so it should come as no surprise I thought it would also be fun to design my own Rolex ads as well, so I said to Mark:

"Why don't we have a contest on Jake's Rolex World, where readers can submit their artwork, along with a description of their concept, and you and I can be the judges of the contest? Let's do it just for fun!" Mark loved the idea, and sent in the next two images, which are based upon the "If you were" Rolex ad series from the 1970s."

List Of Rules
For the Rolex Ad Contest

1. You can submit as many pieces of artwork as you wish. 

2. The artwork needs to be high-resolution, and it should be 1600 pixels tall.

3. Artwork and Copy MUST be in excellent taste. 

4. Email artwork with your first and last name, and country you are located in. You are welcome to include a written narrative that describes the inspiration for your ad, but it is not required.

5. Contest begins today (May 20, 2013) and runs for 30 days, until June 20, 2013. Please send your entry via email to:

This contest is sponsored by Jake's Rolex World and is not affiliated or sponsored in any way by Rolex. Who knows, perhaps Rolex or its ad agency might get inspired by what they see here?

I will publish all the ads submitted, along with our awards for best ads sometime after the competition ends.

The next ad is was also designed by Mark Wright, and is really cool!!!

Legends Of ROLEX 
Series by Jake Ehrlich

As I previously mentioned, I have thought for years about cool designs for Rolex ads, so I put together the next six mock-up ads, along with a detailed description of my inspiration. My three subjects are some of the best know humans that have lived, and all three are no longer with us, but that is what makes the ads so powerful. You see all three of these men, in the prime of their lives, changing the worlds, while proudly wearing their Rolex watches on their wrists...

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr ads by Jake Ehrlich

As I have said in the past, I believe that Dr. Martin Luther King is the greatest hero that ever wore a Rolex, and if I was Rolex, I would not only have magazine ads the feature Dr. King, but also billboard ads.

I really like the Dr. Martin Luther King Ads above and below. The are very similar, but the one above is deeply profound because it has one of Rolex's very famous tag lines from the 1950s and 1960s, that reads "Men Who Guide The Destines Of The World Wear Rolex Watches." 

Ironically Rolex used this tagline during the years Dr. Martin Luther King actually guided the destiny of the world, while Dr. King wore his trademark yellow gold Roles Datejust on his wrist, but Rolex never would have put Dr. King in an ad or referred to him in the 1950s and 1960s, because the times were way too turbulent. Rolex has changed so much since they had the "Men Who Guide" tagline. 

In other words, Rolex was still trying to prove itself in the 1950s and 1960s, but today they would NEVER use that tagline because they have already proven themselves, and if Rolex used that tagline today, everybody would think they were nuts. The beauty of the way I used it, is I am using it as a historical statement. The U.S. has a black president today, because civil rights leader like Dr. King, stood up for what they believed in, and Dr. King obviously risked and lost his life doing so, with his Rolex on his wrist, I might ad.

Pablo Picasso ad by Jake Ehrlich

This one speaks for itself! Pablo Picasso is obviously the greatest modern artist of the 20th Century, and I love this photo because his Rolex GMT Master is highly visible, and the photo almost looks like it was taken yesterday. I remember, years ago, when I first saw and published this image, thinking how much Pablo Picasso looks like an American Indian in the image!!! The image is tres bizarre, and that is why I love it. 

Paul Newman Rolex ad series by Jake Ehrlich

Paul Newman was one of the coolest guys to ever wear a Rolex, and a few models have been nicknamed as "Paul Newman Rolex Daytona" models. I think Rolex should bring back the white exotic dial Daytona, identical to the one Paul Newman is wearing in the photo below, expect it should be completely updated, with a 42 or 44MM case. I also think Rolex should keep the dial very clean, and NOT print the "Officially Certified Swiss Chronometer" on the dial. It should just say have the Rolex and Daytona designation on the dial like the original that Paul Newman is wearing in the ad below.

Further, I think Rolex should make this special edition watch and officially name it, The Paul Newman Daytona. Rolex should put together a deal with Paul Newman's estate to license his name and image, and they should donate a portion from the sale of every "Paul Newman Rolex Daytona" to Paul Newman's Hole In The Wall Camp Charity Fund. This way everybody wins, and it should NOT be a limited edition, just a special edition.

You might notice that ALL my ads are very minimalistic, and lack the typical "For an official Rolex Jeweler Call 1-800-367-6539" as well as "", or any Trademark designation info. I did this on purpose because I think Rolex ads simply don't need it, and after all that is what is for. 

In other words, Less is More!!! I think Rolex should take more of an Apple/Minimalist approach to branding. I also think Rolex should make every watch they ever make in the future, a waterproof Oyster, and that way they don't need to put the Oyster designation on their dials. I think Rolex should keep the Oyster designation, and talk about it, but they don't need to put it on dials anymore.

If you want to see many examples of historical Rolex images to get inspiration, you can see hundred of them by clicking here.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Rolex Lume Shot oF The Day: Chris' LV Submariner

Rolex Lume Shot Of The Day
Chris' LV Submariner

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Rolex Luminaries, Visionaries, Champions New Yorker Magazine

Luminaries. Visionaries. Champions.

New Yorker Magazine
May 20, 2013 Issue

Wow!!! I can't believe my eyes!!! This is a seminal moment in Rolex advertising history!!! I recently wrote an article about how Rolex recently immersed themselves into their amazing history, with the recent complete overhaul of, and in particular, with adding a whole new Rolex history section.

For years, I have been arguing Rolex should use images of Dr. Martin Luther King in modern Rolex ads, because I argue he is the greatest hero in Rolex history, so to finally see Dr. King in a Rolex ad brings tears to my eyes. All I can say is Bravo Rolex!!! Bravo!!!

I love the copy in this all-new Rolex History ad. It is superbly written and precisely articulate. Especially the line that reads "IT'S DARED MEN FASTER. FURTHER." This is true, and it goes all the way back to Sir. Malcolm Campbell in the 1930s breaking one land-speed record after another, and continues up to Chuck Yeager breaking the speed of sound barrier in 1947

It continues with Sir Edmund Hillary, and Tenzing Norgay conquering Mount Everest in 1953, and Captain Don Walsh and Jacques Piccard setting the deepest dive history in 1960, up to the U.S. Astronaut and Air Force Pilot William "Pete" Knight setting the all-time speed record for level flight in 1967 in his venerable X15.

This daring continued with the NASA Apollo Astronauts who went and walked on the moon with their Pepsi Rolex GMT-Master watches, and continues all the way up to last year when James Cameron returned to the Challenger Deep with Captain Don Walsh by his side

People can say whatever they want about Rolex, but one thing is for certain, Rolex history is unparalleled. Many, many men have pushed the envelope of what is possible, inspired by a Rolex on their wrist. This amazing Spirit Of Inquiry is what has made Rolex the International Mark Of Success and Achievement.

So the obvious question, is have we discovered all the incredible Rolex history, or is there more? Yes. There is more. Much, much more unexplored and undocumented Rolex history, and I sincerely hope Rolex continues to delve into it...

Friday, May 17, 2013

Rolex Coolness: Tim Roth Star of Lie To Me

...Rolex Coolness...

Tim Roth
Lie To Me
Vintage Rolex Fan

Tim Roth starred in the hit TV show "Lie To Me," which ran from 2009 to 2011, where he played "Dr. Cal Lightman," who wore a vintage Rolex Submariner, which I believe is a Reference 1680. 

In the photo above we see Tim Sporting his vintage Rolex Pepsi GMT Master.

Tim Roth has also starred in many movies including Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Planet of The Apes, The Incredible Hulk and Rob Roy.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Rolex Super-Coolness: Paul Newman Jeff's Exotic Dial Rolex Daytona

...Rolex Super-Coolness...

Paul Newman
Exotic Dial Rolex Daytona

Jeff (Dr. Strong) created this amazing image of Paul Newman with a Paul Newman Exotic Dial Rolex Daytona in the foreground. What a great image Jeff!!!! If you aren't familiar with the Paul Newman Daytona, you can learn just about everything by checking out The Complete History Of The Paul Newman Daytona article I wrote.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Niall McCann Royal Geographical Society Explorer

...Rolex Coolness...

Niall McCann
Royal Geographical Society Explorer

The Biggest and Baddest

This is a fascinating story about a modern day Royal Geographical Society Explorer who has his own TV show named Biggest and Baddest, which airs on the Animal Planet/Discovery International channel.

Below is a special video which tells the story of how Niall's grandfather, Patrick Baird, an arctic explorer received a special Rolex in 1953 to commemorate an expedition he oversaw, which climbed Mt. Asgard in the Baffin Island in Canada. His grandfather, Patrick Baird was awarded the prestigious British Royal Geographical Society "Founders Medal" for Exploration in 1952.

Patrick Baird's 1953 Rolex Oyster Perpetual is pictured below and it appears to be very similar to the Rolex Sir Edmund Hillary wore when and Tenzing Norgay were the first to conquer Mt. Everest in 1953.

Niall McCann is a Canadian born- British schooled Biologist whose personal adventures include crossing the Atlantic Ocean in a rowboat in 63 days, crossing Greenland's Polar Icecap and helping to create wildlife conservation areas in the jungles of Central and South America.  He's also in the Royal Geographical Society.

Be sure to check out all the fascinating videos and you can learn much more about Naill McCann on his website.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Rolex Macro Shots Of The Day: Mr. K Datejust Dial with Jubilee Bracelet

Rolex Macro Shots Of The Day
Mr. K Datejust Dial with Jubilee Bracelet

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Tiger Woods Wins 2013 Players Championship

...Rolex Coolness...

Tiger Woods
Wins 2013 Players Championship
Rocks Trademark Rolex DEEP SEA

Rolex Ambassador, Tiger Woods just won the Players Championship again. Well, actually, the last time he won it was in 2001, and as you can see in the photos below, Tiger Woods is wearing his not trademark Rolex DEEP SEA...

Stainless Steel Datejust Love From Germany

...Studio Shot Of The Day...

Stainless Steel Datejust Love From Germany

Denise is from Germany and she is fan of Jake's Rolex World. Recently she send in these beautiful photos of her new Rolex Datejust with this nice note:

Hi Jake,

I love to surf around your site.
So much information, so much nice pics, so much nice watches - I love it.
For a couple of weeks I have a new Datejust and I love it so much.
The weather in Germany was so nice, I had to make some pics from my DJ.
I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

All the best from Germany,

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Roger Federer 2013 Rolex Milgauss Ad

...Rolex Coolness...

Roger Federer
2013 Rolex Milgauss Ad


Roger Federer is the greatest tennis player in history and I just saw this cool magazine ad in the June 2013 Vanity Fair. You have got to love the tagline. Like Dizzy Dean said, "It ain't braggin' if you can do it."

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Rolex Studio Shot Of The Day PC Addict's Big Red Panda Daytona

Rolex Studio Shot Of The Day
PC Addict's Big Red Panda Daytona

Monday, May 6, 2013

Rolex Launches Facebook and Pinterest Pages

...BaselWorld 2013 Coverage...

Rolex Get's Really Social
Rolex Launches Facebook and Pinterest Pages

In my last post, I covered the amazing all-new website that Rolex launched at the beginning of BaselWorld. As I mentioned, the new is not a facelift, but a complete reinvention, and Rolex also launched a Facebook Page as well as a Rolex Pinterest page. Rolex also had a significant update on its Rolex YouTube Channel.

I think it is interesting Rolex chose to launch a Pinterest Page, but not a Twitter page. You can go directly to the Rolex Facebook page by simply clicking on "The Rolex Facebook Page" located in the bottom of the left hand corner on

It seems like in one fail swoop, Rolex completely reinvented its online presence which took them from the middle of the class straight to the front.