Rolex has long been a brand that dominates at the world’s biggest watch auctions, with rare and vintage pieces from the brand regularly fetching enormous sums of money. However, one of Rolex’s less celebrated watches, the Yacht-Master, has now made its mark on the auction circuit in a big way. First introduced in 1992, the Yacht-Master is a watch that sits somewhere between the iconic Submariner and the more luxurious Day-Date, offering a sporty yet sophisticated look that’s perfect for above-water adventures.

Despite its undeniable appeal, the Yacht-Master has never quite been an auction darling in the same way that other Rolex models, such as the Daytona or GMT-Master, have been. However, that all changed when a one-of-a-kind Yacht-Master appeared at the Monaco Legend Auctions’ Exclusive Timepieces sale. The watch in question, a fully platinum piece unique ref. 16620PT, was once owned by the former CEO of Rolex, Patrick Heiniger, and sold for a whopping $2.625 million, making it the rarest and most expensive Yacht-Master ever made.

What makes this Yacht-Master so special is its unique dial color – a very light grey – and the text “Dix Millionième Chronometre” in place of the model name and chronometer certification. It also features diamond and sapphire indices, adding to its luxury appeal. The Yacht-Master was produced to commemorate Rolex producing 10 million chronometers, a significant milestone for the brand, and as the only new Rolex model introduced during Heiniger’s tenure, it held a particular significance to him.

This ultra-rare Yacht-Master is not the only one-of-a-kind Rolex produced in the 1990s. Heiniger also had a few platinum Daytonas with precious stone dials made as gifts for friends and associates, adding to the exclusivity of these watches. The Yacht-Master’s platinum case, bezel, and bracelet only add to the luxurious feel of this already special timepiece. It also reportedly has a specially-engraved automatic rotor, demonstrating Rolex’s attention to detail.

In short, while the Yacht-Master may not be as celebrated as some of Rolex’s other models, this unique and luxurious version has now cemented its place in watchmaking history as the rarest and most expensive Yacht-Master ever made. It’s clear that the Yacht-Master has finally found its place as a sought-after model in the world of watch auctions.