Summer VS Winter Rolex Daytona 116578SACO 116589SACI

The Perfect Pair Of Seasonal Daytonas - 116578SACO and 116589SACI

This is an exceptionally complimentary pair of Daytonas. For the purpose of this rundown and so I’m not chanting numbers at you for the duration, we’ll go with SACO and SACI.
SACO for summer because Oh god its hot, and SACI with I for ice on the end.
It’s an unrefined "aide memoir”, but does work like a charm. 

The SACO is presented in full 18ch yellow gold with a 36 baguette cut orange sapphire bezel surrounding a mother of pearl dial with diamond markers. You would think that the combination of varied gemstones plus mother of pearl would be overkill, and on paper, it certainly is, but it in the metal, it is really quite spectacular and has a warm and relaxed “hazy sunset” vibe to it which never fails to put a smile on my face.

In contrast, the SACI has a much frostier theme. White gold is a cool toned metal anyway, and the addition of a 24 baguette cut sapphire bezel and diamond pave dial gives an almost glacial appearance. Rather than being mounted on a WG bracelet, this one is paired with a navy blue alligator strap and deployant which tones in perfectly with the sapphires. 

Both of these use channel set baguettes for the bezel, but an interesting difference between them is that the SACI still retains its hour markers and sets two baguettes between markers whereas the SACO does away with hour spacing for a complete and uninterrupted display of sapphires.

Rolex uses four traditional setting methods for their bejewelled offerings.

“Channel”, which is the setting of baguette cut stones between two bands of metal (in this case, the bezel) and reserved for “ultra” high-end pieces.
“Bead” is when brilliant diamonds (or other gems) are set directly into depressions in the dial sized specifically to match the stone, this creates the “pave” effect seen on diamond dials (and the SACI)
“Closed” uses a solid band of precious metal to encircle and set a stone into place, this is seen on some variants of diamond hour markers.
And finally “Claw” which is when the corner of a gemstone is held in place by thin and deliberately unobtrusive “claws” of metal and ensures that the factets of the stone are still free to catch and play with the light. Both the sapphire markers of the SACI and diamond markers of the SACO showcase this setting technique.

Gem set Daytona's often receive some negativity from those with more restrained tastes, but the point of these pieces has never been “restraint”.
Quite the opposite.
They are designed to showcase Rolex's skill beyond that of classic lines, austere precision, robust calibre manufacture, surgical grade steel, and the unwavering mantra of evolution not revolution.

For want of a better way to phrase it - they are party pieces, and they are superb.

The chances are that if you’re considering a SACO, SACI or even a full RAINBOW, you’ve already developed an affection for the brand through enjoying some of their more s and professional offerings and are looking for something a little different.

Jewellery pieces like these aren’t a subtle choice, but they are a testament to the versatility and enduring design of the Daytona which can be presented both in pure steel or a dazzling array of gemstones and still be instantly recognisable.
This is the power of Rolex, and I believe it is one to be celebrated.