Rare Watches, Magnificent Jewels & Objets de Vertu
14 January 2019 | Monaco | Lot 1
Rolex Air King, ref. 5500, “Linz”, stainless steel
Estimate € 3,000 – 5,000
Model: Air King
Material: Stainless steel
Reference N°: 5500
Year: Circa 1964/1965
Case N°: 1133343
Caliber: 1530 automatic
Bracelet: Leather strap
Dimensions: 34 mm
Signed: Dial, case and movement
Named after the English aviators of WWII, the Air-King was first introduced as one of the “lower-end” timepieces in the Rolex family. Despite its price point, Rolex made no compromises with this model in terms of quality; it still features the Oyster case, bracelet, and an automatic movement. Like a lot of Rolex watches, it became incredibly popular and remained in production for 60 years! It was reintroduced at Baselworld in 2016 with mixed reviews, but this vintage model still has our hearts. This watch is in lovely original conditions; furthermore, the dial is signed by the charismatic retailer “Linz”. Linz Brothers was a Texas-based retailer, established in 1877. Joseph Linz, originally from St Louis, was a trained watchmaker who repaired watches for train conductors on the Missouri, Kansas and Texas railroads. In 1877 he settled in Texas and opened a watch and jewelry store. By the 20th century, Joseph Linz and Brother had become major Rolex dealers, allowing the firm the rare privilege to place their name in such a prominent position on the dial. Such a nice example appears very rarely on the public market.
Montre Rolex en acier, modèle Air King « Linz », réf. 5500. Au XXe siècle, Joseph Linz et Brother sont devenus d’importants concessionnaires Rolex, ce qui a permis à l’entreprise d’avoir le rare privilège de placer leur nom dans une position aussi importante sur le cadran. Un aussi bel exemplaire apparait très rarement sur le marché public.