Article by: Kristen Wiley

Rolex Yachtmaster II History


The Rolex Yacht-Master history begins in 1992, where the first Yach-Master was introduced in solid 18k yellow gold - model number 16628. Designed for the nautical sportsman, the Yacht-Master reflected the Rolex Submariner but was truly a different breed. The line was such an huge success that Rolex eventually released the model in 18k yellow gold & steel (model 16623), steel & platinum (16622), a mid size Yacht-Master, and a Lady Yacht-Master version.

It would take another 15 years for Rolex to introduce a long-awaited successor. In late 2007, Rolex introduced the Yacht-Master II and is only loosely based on its predecessor; sporting a massive 44mm case, an all-new 4161 automatic movement, and 90 degree rotatable ceramic Ring Command bezel. The Yacht-Master II was designed specifically with the professional sailor in mind. To provide synchronization at the starting sequence of a yacht race, this new model is a regatta chronograph and features the first ever programmable countdown with a mechanical memory.

Rolex Yacht-Master II White Dial Bezel Detail 116689

Rolex Yacht-Master II 116689 in 18k White Gold - Dial and Bezel Detail

4161 Automatic Movement

The calibre 4161 movements is the all-new, self-winding mechanical regatta chronograph spawned and manufactured by Rolex. This is the first movement to introduce a regatta countdown, designed to be used to countdown the time of a race’s starting procedure. The mechanism can be programmed to count down from 1 and 10 minutes; this process involves rotating the ceramic bezel, which is one of the first watches in the world to work in conjunction and linked with the movement.


The Rolex Yacht-Master II is available in solid 18k yellow gold (model 116688), 18k white gold (model 116689), and 904L steel & 18k everose gold (model 116681). The Yacht-Master II is waterproof to 100 meters and features a screw-down triplock triple crown to ensure this water-resistance. The Oyster bracelet is fitted with a folding Oysterlock safety clasp and Easylink 5mm comfort extension link.

                          Rolex Yacht-Master II White Dial 116688 Rolex Yacht-Master II White Dial 116689

                                                    Rolex Yacht-Master II 116688 in 18k Yellow Gold                                                                            Rolex Yacht-Master II 116689 in 18k White Gold


While still a relatively new model for the Swiss watch company, Rolex has outdone itself by proving once again that these watches are truly for the professional in their industry or sport. The pinnacle movements and designs engineered by masters of their craft -  creating beautiful, functional art.


If you have any questions about the Yacht-Master or another Rolex you may be interested in, please be sure contact us for more information.

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