What To Expect From The ‘A Watch Born To Explore’ Exhibition By Rolex & The Hour Glass

Oyster Perpetual Explorer 36mm, Rolex

Though we recognise Rolex as the king of luxury watches (their logo is fittingly a crown, after all), the Rolex heritage is in actuality one steeped in the spirit of exploration, one that dares to conquer the highest of mountains, the deepest of oceans and the most treacherous of terrains. This month, we get to learn more about this side of the Swiss watchmaker in a special exhibition, A Watch Born to Explore, held for the very first time in Malaysia, exclusively at the Centre Court of Pavilion Kuala Lumpur. 

Brought to us by Rolex and The Hour Glass, the exhibition is modelled after a rocky cavern that alludes to the sense of adventure that the Explorer inspires. The displays by the entrance detail the parts that make up the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer II, from its beating heart, the calibre 3285, to its robust yet elegant Oystersteel case. Elsewhere, illustrated panels and films take the visitor on a journey of discovery that recalls the history and development of the Rolex Explorer, beginning from its launch in 1953—following the first ascent to the summit of Mount Everest by an expedition equipped with the Rolex Oyster Perpetual—then onwards to the creation of the Explorer II in 1971 and its present-day iterations now seen on the wrists of some of the world’s esteemed speleologists, volcanologists and explorers, also as the fashion accessory of choice for famous men the likes of Prince Harry, Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Orlando Bloom, Jason Statham, John Mayer, Steve McQueen and even fictional characters such as Don Draper of the Mad Men TV series. 

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Rolex Explorer


The exhibition also spotlights Rolex’s commitment to projects concerned with the preservation of the earth, first launched through the Perpetual Planet initiative in 2019. The initiative supports individuals and organisations that use science to understand the world’s environmental challenges and devise solutions that will restore balance to our ecosystems. 

Rolex Explorer


Of course, then there are the stars of the exhibition: the watches, displayed in glass cases for all to admire. Eagle-eyed fans will also notice set pieces inspired by the Rolex Oyster bracelet forming the display units in the exhibition. 

Rolex Explorer

Close-up on the Oyster Perpetual Explorer II dial and hands


The exhibition was launched on August 6th, 2022 , attended by Rolex aficionados, celebrities and influencers including Tengku Datin Paduka Setia Zatashah and Dato’ Setia Aubry Rahim Mennesson, Awal Ashaari and Scha Alyahya, Kavita Sidhu and husband Roberto Guiati, Daiyan Trisha, Yaya Zahir, Nazreem Musa, and Alif Satar, who were all entertained by a surprise performance from BAZAAR cover girl and international R&B sensation, Yuna.


Oyster Perpetual Explorer II


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Be sure to check out this one-of-a-kind exhibition while it lasts. The exhibition runs until August 14th, 2022.