Artisans De Geneve Flexes Old-School Cool With Stunning Custom ‘Tropical’ Rolex Daytona

The bespoke watchmaker debuts an impressive, one-of-a-kind Rolex Daytona with an incredibly unique patina dial.

Artisans De Geneve

The finest luxury watches on the planet really tell a story all their own, the story of how, when and where the watch was worn — and certainly, the story of its owner. Those stories take decades to build, but custom luxury Swiss watchmaker Artisans De Geneve is leveling up that storytelling in a major with its latest bespoke endeavor: A Rolex Daytona finished off with an aged, authentic oxidized “tropical” dial.

So named for the deep, sun-faded look that vintage sport watches take on over the years, the “Rusty” Project, as the company dubbed it, is a one-off watch crafted with the utmost care and attention to detail (to say the least).

Artisans De Geneve has previously worked with legendary clients like tennis legend John McEnroe on custom watches, setting the bar high indeed for painstakingly designed orders tailored to the needs of its clients.

Artisans De Geneve

The “Rusty” Project is visually striking and a work of art in its own right — it started off simply enough, with a classic Rolex Daytona, a watch prized by collectors and also often done up in custom or special editions.

As Artisans De Geneve noted, the company’s client wanted a watch to “bear the marks of time.”

With the Rolex Daytona as an impressive starting point, Artisans De Geneve developed its own aging process to give the handsome, sporty Daytona the exact look preferred by its secretive client.

The key? The luxury timepiece maker treated the dial first, then exposed the watch to the elements in the notoriously humid Azores Island region.

Artisans De Geneve

10 weeks later and following close observation by the lucky recipient of this watch, the work was done — at least, the initial aging work. One imagines this watch will continue to get better with age and plenty of adventure.

Incredibly enough, the watch was aged in part in an unconventional way: Tucked into the hollow of a rocky wall, surrounded by stunning, lush (and yes, very humid) vegetation.

Artisans De Geneve

The internal workings of this watch are a thing to be marveled at, too — note the skeleton caseback, for starters.

Within, look even more closely and observe a 21-karat gold rotor and the intricate, extremely precise custom 4130 caliber movement.

Time is, after all, ticking away ever more quickly (or is it ticking by ever more slowly?), so the right tools to keep track of those valuable seconds are, well, invaluable.

There’s no word on how much this extraordinary watch cost, but we’re willing to be it wasn’t cheap — the best things in life are worth the extra investment, however.

As Artisans De Geneve says, “behind each timepiece lies great craftsmanship.” After marveling at the one-of-a-kind rarity that is the Tropical Rolex Daytona crafted by the bespoke firm, we’d have to agree wholeheartedly with that assessment.