Rolex has three fundamentally similar watches: the Submariner, the Sea-Dweller, and the Yacht-Master. To a non-enthusiast, these names may sound comically similar. Just wait until you see them; they’re near-identical from a distance. Upon closer look, their unique design elements become obvious. When you try them on, these differences are night and day.
Rolex’s nautical offerings are siblings, but they each have their own personality. The youngest, and perhaps least understood, is the Rolex Yacht-Master. Like today’s most popular watches, the Yacht-Master toes the line between sport and luxury. It looks great with a suit, but perhaps better with swim trunks. Is the Yacht-Master the perfect all-arounder? Or is it a jack of all trades and a master of. . . yachts?
How does the Rolex Yacht-Master wear?
Perhaps the most important characteristic of the Yacht-Master is its wearability. Compared to the robust Submariner, the Yacht-Master is 1.5 mm thinner and far more contoured to the wrist. As of today, it's also offered in three different sizes (37mm, 40mm, 42mm), whereas the Submariner is only offered in 41mm. This is a comfortable watch, especially compared to its older siblings. The Yacht-Master would feel at home in Rolex’s “classic” and “professional” lines. Although it’s slotted under the “professional” category, it’s far less of a tool than the Submariner or Sea-Dweller. The Yacht-Master features ⅓ of the Submariner’s water resistance at only 100 meters (still plenty for most people). This allows the watch to have its slimmer profile. Rolex wasn’t trying to make a superior dive watch here. This is the sleek, comfortable, stylish alternative. The Yacht-Master is worn on the yacht; the Submariner is worn under the yacht.
How does the Rolex Yacht-Master look?
The Yacht-Master borrows the Submariner’s iconic design language, but offers luxurious finishing: precious metals, mirror-polished links, and an embossed Cerachrom bezel. Despite its sporty, causal roots, this watch fits with black tie attire. Again – it’s not really a tool watch. Although it’s plenty capable underwater, you won’t want to take it down there – it’s just too pretty.
If you want to dress down your Yacht-Master, consider taking it off the bracelet. Although a bracelet is usually considered the more casual option, the Yacht-Master's mirror-polished middle links give it a dressy feel. Looking for a new strap can be confusing – but don’t worry – you’re already in the right place. Everest offers nylon, leather, and rubber straps tailor made for the Rolex Yacht-Master. Because this watch toes the line between practical and posh, a new strap can tip the scale one way or the other. Like most watches, changing out the strap will give you a whole new experience.
Who is the Rolex Yacht-Master for?
I don’t see the Yacht-Master as someone’s only watch. This is a piece that compliments your everyday wear, your rugged tool watch, your dress watch, etc. The Yacht-Master falls into its own unique niche. It's fundamentally a dive watch, but has the finishing of a DateJust. If every Rolex is a luxury watch, the Yacht-Master is a luxury Rolex.
Don’t get me wrong – it could be your everyday watch. The question is: what does your every day look like? A watch named the ‘Yacht-Master’ implies a few things about its wearer. Not everyone can identify with the opulence of this piece (including myself), but everyone can recognize its beauty. So who is it for? Simply put, if you're unsure about the Yacht-Master, it's probably not for you. This is a watch that chooses its wearers -- not the other way around.