The Rotary Tradition Automatic is a Timeless Classic

Sponsored by Rotary.

Since 1895, when Moise Dreyfuss opened his factory in the Swiss town of La Chaux de Fonds, demand for merchandise that presented top quality and exceptional value, ensured the prevalence of the brand we know today as Rotary. In recent years Rotary has seen somewhat of a resurgence, battling the minimal watch trend to emerge as producers of classic, well-built, value conscious timepieces. Their latest creation from the Les Originales family, the Rotary Tradition Automatic, is no different.

Rotary Tradition Automatic

Housed in an extremely handsome 41.5mm stainless steel case, the Rotary Tradition Automatic wears beautifully on the wrist. I’ll admit it does sound a tad on the large side (it could have easily been 40mm) but the subtle design allows it to fly under the radar and pair impeccably with any outfit, even Black Tie.

Rotary Tradition Automatic

The matte off-white dial and recessed crown complement the Rotary Automatic’s understated design, while long silver indices and elegant hands adding a touch of sophistication. Admirers of stereotypical ‘dress watches’ might be opposed to the small date window but I’m never one to whine about the addition of the date and feel it suits Rotary’s contemporary reinterpretation of the classic dress watch. It also makes the Rotary Tradition Automatic better equipped for daily wear.

Rotary Tradition Automatic

Rotary Tradition Automatic

The hidden crown delivers an undoubtedly clean and svelte appearance when viewing the watch from above. It pops out easily and winds effortlessly when setting the time and the date but definitely takes a bit of getting used to. I’m intrigued to know whether the 12mm case height was machined simply to accommodate the crown in its entirety. I’d like to assume that it was, giving the designers a reason to settle on what I perceive to be quite a wide case. Had the crown not been hidden, I think the Rotary Tradition Automatic would have found immense appeal with a thinner case but I do enjoy its point of difference in its current form.

Rotary Tradition Automatic

Rotary Tradition Automatic

On the underside of the watch is an exhibition case back displaying a Sellita SW200 with Rotary rotor and the brand’s Dolphin logo, confirming the watch meets the Rotary’s water resistance standard. A luxurious leather strap and nicely detailed buckle complete the package.

Don’t let the size deter you, The Rotary Tradition Automatic is an understated and affordable classic with a workhouse movement – it’s also a refreshing change from the hoard of junk in the sub $1000 price range.

You can check out the Rotary collection here.

8th Avenue Watches distributes the Rotary brand in Australia. You can visit their website for locations.


James is the Founder and Editor of The Versatile Gent.

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