Woman Finds Rare $250k Rolex in $25 Sofa
An anonymous woman in Canada found a Rolex Daytona down the back of a thrift store sofa she bought some 4 years earlier for $25, but this wasn’t any old Rolex Daytona (which would have been a great find anyway given the retail value never mind the grey market value.) If you were going to find any Rolex Daytona down the back of a sofa, this was the Rolex Daytona you would want to find, this was a Paul Newman Rolex Daytona 6241 worth an estimated $250,000. Read more below.
Imagine this for a second, you are sat on a sofa you bought a few years earlier from a thrift shop for $25 mindlessly scrolling through social media, or better still the Vulcan Watch Straps website looking for a new for your Rolex. When, oh no, you drop your phone down that blasted crack in the cushions on your sofa and it disappears. You stuff your hand into the cushions praying you won’t get stuck, but instead of pulling out a phone you pull out a watch from them the depths of the darkness between the cushions.
If you are not a Rolex enthusiast or watch collector you may be forgiven for not thinking too much of it, but everyone has heard of Rolex, right? And you see the watch you have pulled from the depths of the sofa has the word “Rolex” adorned across the dial of this what looks to be vintage timepiece, and although you don’t know it yet, you have just found a $250,000 Rolex Paul Newman Daytona 6241 inside a $25 thrift store couch. Sounds absurd right? Well, this actually happened to some anonymous woman from Canada last week.
We all hear of the family members leaving behind watches and nobody else in the family really knows what they actually are and they turn out to be a very valuable timepiece. But it makes you wonder how someone can lose a Rolex Daytona down the back of a sofa and forget about it, my guess is that this watch must have been down the back of that sofa for a lot longer than 4 years when the woman from Canada bought it from the thrift shop, my guess would be that the watch has probably been down there for some 30-40 years, or the owner would have literally turned the house inside out and upside down to find it.
So what were these watches worth new?
When this reference Rolex Daytona was bought new in 1969 it would have been bought for $210 (+ tax) and during this period Rolex Daytona’s were not really that popular, these particular versions with the exotic dials were very unpopular and the retailers couldn’t give them away. Rolex only ever produced 2000-3000 and of these, only a few were exotic dial versions of the Rolex Daytona. So you could have been forgiven for losing watch worth $210 down the back of a sofa and could quite easily slip your mind.
These exotic dial Rolex Daytona didn’t become popular until the 1980s when a group of Italian collectors discovered them and gave them a nickname “Paul Newman” after a photograph of the famous actor surfaced wearing one. Having a nickname for the watch made it easier for the collectors to talk about between them so they all knew which reference each of them were talking about. Today the Paul Newman Daytona is one of the most desired vintage watches around trading hands for 6 figure sums. It seems all you have to do to a Rolex is give it a nickname and the price sky-rockets… look at the Batman, the Hulk and the Pepsi!
The Rolex "Paul Newman" Daytona 6241 shown below
Would you look for the owner of the watch first?
So, all that said and all credit to the Canadian woman who found the watch, as she phoned the thrift shop and inquired about anyone who had reported a missing watch or if they knew who had donated the sofa to the store. But as 4 years had gone by the thrift store had no records of the previous owner or any way to find out who the owner was or any way to contact them. So, having cleared her conscience she started to do some digging into the watch and looking to see what it might be worth.
After realising that any Rolex watch would be worth a good bit of cash, she reached out to luxury watch retailer and Rolex experts so that she could determine the true value and eventually sell the watch. Personally, I would have worn this Rolex for a while, but being a watch and Rolex enthusiast that’s just me :) So, after an initial telephone conversation one of the Rolex vintage watch experts from Bobs Watches jumped on a plane to Canada.
This expert was able to examine the watch and determine that this Rolex was indeed a genuine Rolex Paul Newman Daytona 6241 and was, in fact, worth a worth $250,000.
The most expensive Rolex ever sold?
The most expensive Rolex Daytona ever sold was, in fact, a Paul Newman Daytona and it fetched a whopping $17.8 Million at auction and became the most expensive watch ever sold. You can read about this in our blog dedicated to this watch https://www.vulcanwatchstraps.com/blog/most-expensive-rolex So what is this anonymous Canadian woman going to do with the money she found down the back of her sofa, well according to Bobs watches the site which broke the story she will be “buying a house and getting a boob job” not a bad way to spend your money and all said not a bad return on your investment from a $25 thrift shop sofa, this gives Warren Buffet a run for his money.
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This article was written by Lee Scott
Founder Vulcan Watch Straps.