In a conversation of the most iconic watchmakers, there is one brand that would certainly dominate conversation, and it is none other than Rolex. While their list of achievements is certainly impressive, their sister brand was always viewed as a bit of an ugly duckling – until lately. Thanks to an incredibly successful relaunch in 2012, Tudor has come out of its shell and is finally beginning to garner the respect it deserves.
One model that is developing a strong market for itself as of late is the Tudor Oysterdate. Offered as a budget-friendly counterpart to the Rolex Datejust, the OysterDate features a lot of the same technological advancements that Rolex was renowned for, and still are. Things such as its Oyster case, screw-down Rolex-signed crown, and cyclops lens over the date at 3 o'clock all pointed to the Tudor OysterDate hailing from the Genevan Giant's factory.
While all that has been mentioned proves the quality and pedigree of this watch, this particular example is far, far more special for reasons that might not be so applicable to most of you but very significant for me as a Malaysian. Flipping the watch over, you will notice that this Tudor is engraved with the words ‘From T.A. Rahman Prime Minister Malaysia’. Tunku Abdul Rahman was the first prime minister of Malaysia after they achieved independence from Great Britain in 1957. Not only that, but he is revered in my home country because he was instrumental in the negotiations that allowed the then called Malaya to achieve independence.
While watches from the Middle East gifted by politicians or royalty often entailed high-end brands such as Rolex and Patek Philippe that were double stamped, Malaysia came from much more humble beginnings and was still trying to find its feet at the time. As such, the fact that this gift was a Tudor, an economical but high-quality timepiece, entirely makes sense.
The serial number of this watch dates it to 1964, 7 years into Tunku Abdul Rahman’s post as prime minister of Malaya. It is provenance like this that makes collecting watches so rewarding and for a watch like this that has a significant story to me, I am very proud to be able to offer this piece, in stunning condition.