LuxyWish Guide 2021: 100 Best Men’s Watches to Buy

LuxyWish Guide 2021: 100 Best Men's Watches to Buy
LuxyWish Guide 2021: 100 Best Men's Watches to Buy

A man’s wristwatch is one of the most prominent pieces of his attire. Beyond a wedding or class ring, it’s one of the few pieces of jewelry that most guys feel comfortable wearing, and it’s also one of the few ways that they can genuinely express themselves. Is he serious or lighthearted? Is it preferable to be a modernist or a traditionalist? Are you daring or calculating? As a result, there are thousands of watch categories to choose from, ranging from variations on the internal mechanisms to functional history to designer whim to often prohibitively expensive materials. We believe that, like other accessories, it’s best to build a watch wardrobe with one or two pieces that are great for everyday use and others that are more specific.

We at Luxy Wish have compiled a list of some of our all-time favorites in various styles and pricing points. Some of the selections are rather pricey, but the good news is that if you don’t want to sacrifice your mortgage to buy a watch, there are generally absolutely acceptable quality equivalents further down the price range. These most outstanding men’s watches are also ideal gifts for special occasions. Assemble your timepiece collection using this approach as a guide.

A LANGE & SÖHNE

When we talk about what kind of watch to buy, all the Swiss brands are a good idea. But you will be super wrong to think that the other countries fall that far behind making quality timepieces. The Saxon watchmaking house A Lange & Söhne does a great job competing with Patek Philippe and other Swiss giants. Recent auctions have revealed that early, complex pocket watches and the more unique pieces manufactured since Lange’s “new generation” began after German reunification are picking up high prices.

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Most Lange & Söhne watches like Lange 1 Time Zone start from $50,000 and can be a great watch to have or an excellent investment because their price will only go up from there. 

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ALPINA

Alpina is another brand that has been getting a lot of attention recently. One reason for this is the acquisition of the brand by Citizen. Alpina’s watches have become a lot more adventurous and exciting. For example, the Alpiner Quartz, which debuted last year, is now accessible with a GMT option on a satin or refined strap or bracelet with grey or blue dials.

A watch that we want to recommend from Alpina’s collection is the Seastrong Diver.

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Gyre. However, it might be a little bit challenging to get your heads on one of them because the line models are limited to 1,883 pieces each. The Gyre features a Sellita automatic mechanism, 300 meters of water resistance, and a 36mm or 44mm casing and NATO-style strap constructed from recycled plastics gathered in the ocean’s rotating flows (“gyres”).

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ANDERSEN GENÈVE

Dane Svend Andersen left his employment in Patek Philippe’s “complications” department 40 years ago to open his workshop in Geneva. Andersen is still associated with the brand, despite selling it in 2015.

We vote for a special 40th-anniversary edition of the Tempus Terrae globe timer. Its standout feature is a “blue-gold” dial formed by heating regular 21-carat gold with touches of the iron, powered by a movement based on Louis Cottier’s two-crown mechanism invented in the 1950s. The watch will be limited to 24 pieces, with or without diamond-set bezels. andersen-geneve.ch is a website that sells andersen-geneve.ch is a website that sells Andersen.

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APPLE

The wristwatch market leader varied its output in 2020 with the all-new, blood-oxygen-measuring Series 6 and a budget-friendly SE model that foregoes an always-on display. Both function well with Apple’s Fitness+ program, which offers a well-designed slate of workouts (including HIIT, yoga, strength training, and more) for a monthly fee.

The Series 6 is a remarkable but iterative improvement on its predecessor, so you’ll want to dress it up a little. A heavy, titanium “Watch Edition” model paired with one of Apple’s new Braided Solo Loops will suffice.

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AUDEMARS PIGUET

The Musée Atelier museum at Audemars Piguet’s Le Brassus headquarters opened this summer, six years after Danish architectural company Bjarke Ingels Group won a competition to create it on the site of the original 1875 workshop. The area comprises 108 structural glass panels and is shaped like two spirals inspired by watch springs. But don’t just peek through the window; visit museeatelier-audemarspiguet.com to schedule a visit.

The [Re]master01, based on the ref 1533 from the 1940s, has to be the watch of the collection. The champagne display and blued steel hands are designed to look like the original, and the caliber 4409 flyback chronograph is set in a 40mm steel casing with pink-gold accents. £51,800.

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AVI-8

The Lafayette Escadrille is a military unit based in Lafayette, Louisiana. It’s not a new style of resort shoe, but a unit of American volunteers that served as fighter pilots for the French during World War I, despite the USA’s official neutrality. They were given the name Lafayette after the Marquis de Lafayette, a French Civil War hero, and Avi-8 has released the Lafayette Flyboy, a damned awesome £265 chronograph in their honor.

It would have been the Flyboy if we weren’t so patriotic. As it stands, we’re aiming for the Spitfire Type 300, an automatic movement with a winding rotor in the shape of a miniature Spitfire that pays homage to the renowned aircraft.

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BALL WATCH CO

Webb C Ball was an American watchmaker who designed the first watches approved for use by US railroads in the early 1900s. Ball’s work as chief time inspector ensured that trains covering 125,000 miles ran (mostly) smoothly by the time he died in 1922.

Ball Watch Co., currently owned by Asia Commercial Holdings, is proud of its American Heritage, as evidenced by the new Engineer Hydrocarbon NEDU, a diving watch inspired by the US Navy’s Experimental Diving Unit. The watch boasts a unidirectional ceramic bezel, a 17.3mm thick casing 600 meters water resistant, and a dial lighted by hydrogen gas tubes.

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BAMFORD WATCH DEPARTMENT

George Bamford founded BWD in 2004 as an unauthorized aftermarket customizer. 2017 was the year when this watch was taken out of the cold to become the official more pimp for LVMH dial names such as Zenith, TAG Heuer, and Bulgari.

BWD created its line, which evolved from the “service” watches supplied to clients while their pieces were in the workshops, in addition to the LVMH connection. These were so popular that they inspired a line of replicas, the most recent are the automatic GMT Italian (shown) and GMT Blue & Brown.

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BAUME & MERCIER

Baume & Mercier Hampton Classic Chronograph Automatic
Baume & Mercier Hampton Classic Chronograph Automatic

Baume, the Richemont Group’s new “socially responsible” watch brand, was founded in 2018 to operate independently of Baume & Mercier. However, as of June, it has been formally welcomed into the fold, bringing with it a greater understanding of environmental protection “due to its emphasis on the use of recycled materials.”

Baume & Mercier’s revamp on the maxi version of its iconic rectangular Hampton model (named after the US beach resort) should appeal to formal watch connoisseurs. The top-of-the-line dual time zone model with a black alligator strap is our favorite. £3,450.

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BELL & ROSS

If you’ve been keeping up with 2020 watch trends, you’ll know that “integrated bracelets” are the way to go. Bell & Ross replied with the BR-05 collection, which starts at £3,600 for a rubber model and escalates to £27,000 for the all-gold range-topper. A new chronograph version was also introduced recently.

The BRV3-94 RS20, a 43mm chronograph that pays homage to Bell & Ross status as a long-term supporter of the Renault F1 team, appeals to our petrolhead proclivities. The watch comes with a black and yellow “carbon effect” leather strap or a steel bracelet and is limited to 999 pieces.

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BLANCPAIN

Blancpain CEO Marc Hayek’s passion for motorsport led to a ten-year partnership with international GT racing, first as the official timing partner of the FIA GT1 championship and then as the title sponsor of the Blancpain Endurance Series (which included the Total 24 Hours Of Spa), which evolved into the Blancpain GT Series. However, by late 2019, the brand had stepped down from its role and, on the contrary, had increased its focus on environmental problems by further developing its Blancpain Ocean Commitment program.

Blancpain unveiled the first “modern” diving watch in 1953, according to the company. The Fifty Fathoms has now been released in over 100 varieties; the most recent is the Bathyscaphe Mokarran. This 50-piece limited edition will donate £750 of the purchase price to the Mokarran Protection Society to help safeguard giant hammerhead sharks (Sphyrna Mokarran). £11,900.

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BOSS

The current collection from Boss watches, which includes three styles dubbed Aero, Nomad, and Vela, is inspired by “open sky, urban streets, and expansive vistas.”

Stainless steel is a durable material that may be used in a variety of applications. The Vela dive chronograph looks the part, and with a unidirectional bezel, 200-meter water-resistant, and push-pieces, it shouldn’t mind a swim.

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BREGUET

Breguet is so well-known in the watch business that it doesn’t need sponsorship to promote its image – yet it is a significant supporter of Race For Water, an organization dedicated to water conservation. A self-sufficient, Breguet-funded yacht is sailing worldwide as part of a campaign dubbed Odyssey 2017-2021 to spread the word.

Meanwhile, the new Tradition Quantième Rétrograde 7597 merits top honors in the field of exquisite watches. The retrograde date display accommodates for short months and leaps years and snaps back to “one” on the last day of each month, displaying the exceptional levels of fit and finish for which Breguet is known.

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BREITLING

If you walk down Redchurch Street in London’s Shoreditch, you might notice the inspiration for the massive mural on one of the buildings. Breitling recently commissioned the 16-foot abstract painting based on the design of a 1960s Top Time watch dial that resembled Zorro’s mask, to be painted by British street artist Pref.

Breitling’s new Endurance Pro line of lightweight, ultra-accurate, quartz-powered models, dubbed “the ideal athleisure watch,” is aimed squarely at younger shoppers. There is five distinct dial detailing colors to pick from, each with a matching rubber strap. Breitling also launched the Endurance Pro Challenge with Strava at the same time as the watch, an online triathlon in which participants could win a Breitling Colnago C64 cycle, Endurance Pro watches, and Breitling cycling shirts.

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BREMONT

Nims Purja’s mission to summit the world’s 14 tallest mountains in less than seven months was a significant risk for Bremont. Everything could have gone wrong. However, this time he pulled it off and set seven world records in the process. Bremont commemorated the occasion with a pair of limited-edition “Project Possible” timepieces.

The Battle Of Britain collection includes a unique ALT1-ZT GMT chronograph (shown) with a dial inspired by Spitfire clocks and a Hurricane-themed three-hand automatic based on an existing Airco model. The collection’s watches are two watches. Only 80 sets will be available, and each purchaser will receive a free flight in a Spitfire.

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BRISTON

Briston, which is only seven years old, has created a name for itself with a line of retro-inspired watches with distinctive cushion-shaped casings available in steel or tortoiseshell-look acetate. The brand has released a skeletonized look with a Miyota automatic movement in a 42mm steel or PVD gold case for less than £600.

The Clubmaster series, which was recently upgraded with various world-time models powered by Swiss-made Sellita automatic movements, is one of the range’s pillars. It’s easy to synchronize the appropriate location with the correct time on the fixed 24-hour ring thanks to the 24 cities marked on the rotating inner bezel.

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BULGARI

Bulgari’s dynamic CEO Jean-Christophe Babin was the driving factor behind the world’s only central international watch display this year. Over a dozen firms participated in Geneva Watch Days, which took place over four days in late August and featured their latest innovations at Covid-compliant events throughout the city.

The event witnessed the revival of Bulgari’s entry-level “Aluminium” watch, first seen in the 1990s, and the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Skeleton Automatic (shown), the slimmest tourbillon and chronograph watch ever built, with a casing just 7.4mm thick.

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BULOVA

Bulova is best known for the Accutron, the world’s first electronic wristwatch introduced in 1960. Still, it also has a rich archive of other spectacular designs, including the Computron driver’s watch, which inspired this year’s.

The Chronograph A from the 1970s is the watch of the collection. The oval background behind the two subdials gives them a unique look, it’s also called the “Surfboard,” and it resembles a popular design used by Breitling and Vulcain (although the Chronograph A was among the most popular). Originals are uncommon and expensive, but you can now own this reasonably priced, quartz-powered, 1970s-style replica.

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CARL F BUCHERER

Manero Flyback with blue dial and blue textile strap (KEYSTONE/Carl F. Bucherer)

The Lucerne-based company has partnered with the renowned Igniv restaurants in Bad Ragaz, St Moritz, Zurich, and Bangkok, providing each with a CFB Manero Flyback chronograph for the head chef and sommelier.

The Manero mentioned above Flyback in steel, which looks better than ever in its newly introduced blue-dial appearance, has to be the watch of the collection. It comes with a steel bracelet or a blue cloth strap, which is the more affordable and, in our opinion, the better option.

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CARTIER

Cartier chose to present its all-new models on a customer website named cartierwatchmakingencounters.com, seemingly undaunted by the cancellation of the SIHH watch show in Geneva in 2020. It debuted new interpretations of the Santos-Dumont and Tank Asymétrique, as well as a surprise with the return of a model that had been out of production for decades.

The Pasha, designed by Gérald Genta and introduced in 1985, is the watch of the collection. The restored model comes in 13 different varieties, with a “square in a circle” style, Arabic numerals, and a screw-down crown top joined by a thin chain. It’s even more lovely now than it was 35 years ago. 

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CASIO

Casio commemorated the 20th anniversary of their Edifice sports watches with the debut of the ECB-10HR, a distinctly cool version created in collaboration with another Japanese engineering behemoth, Honda Motor Company.

Casio’s G-Shock sub-brand has such a devoted fanbase that it practically deserves its section, but we’ve included the new G-Shock Frogman right here. Frogman models have been available for 27 years, but this is the first with an analog display, the GWF-A1000. It comes with a global timer, tide graph, and dive time functions, as well as Bluetooth, LED backlighting, and a 200-meter water-resistance rating.

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CERTINA

As money becomes more important than ever, it appears that watch brands that have long focused on providing a lot of watches for a low price will be the ones to withstand the approaching economic storm, especially if they’re providing us with Certina’s.

The DS PH200M is a retro-style diving watch with cutting-edge features including a ceramic bezel, an ultra-antimagnetic Nivachron balance spring, a 42.8mm plain steel or PVD-coated case, and Milanese brand nylon or brown calfskin strap. It’s water-resistant up to 200 meters, and the price isn’t outrageous.

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CHANEL

No one can do it better than Chanel when it comes to making the most of a halo watch. Since its first versions went on sale 20 years ago, the company’s J12 model, which was conceived by the late creative director Jacques Helleu and named after the J12 racing yachts of the Edwardian era, has been a consistent success.

The new J12 will be the watch of the collection. The X-Ray is the first watch in the world to use a bracelet constructed entirely of sapphire crystal, which is also utilized for the dial, movement base plate, and main bridges. Only 12 will be created, and we expect most of them to be go-to guys, even though it isn’t the most butch-looking.

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CHAUMET

Chaumet is a low-key watch brand compared to the other LVMH watch lines. It never makes a big deal out of its accomplishments, and it hardly ever introduces a new timepiece. The Dandy is the only model available for males. All of this constancy is reassuring.

Please bear with me. Something has occurred. Chaumet has reimagined the Dandy in three new iterations (well, three new dials, at least, look a bit like the old ones). A light-grey metallic dial with either white or blue accents and a little second hand at 6 o’clock. There’s also a new brushed steel bracelet.

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CHOPARD

Chopard has collaborated with Kiton, an Italian tailor, to produce a 100-piece limited edition of its ultra-thin LUC XP watch. The Il Sarto Kiton features a DLC-coated steel case with a houndstooth-pattern dial and a slate-colored cashmere strap with red alligator detailing. It’s stunning, as the Latins would say.

The Chopard Mille Miglia GTS Azzurro is the watch of the collection. The annual Mille Miglia motor event was supposed to take place in May, but due to the coronavirus, it was postponed. Chopard has offered us two new GTS Azzurro watches to tide us over as we wait. The first is a steel and rose-gold power reserve watch, while the second is a steel chronograph watch. Both have beautiful blue dials, as their names suggest.

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CHRISTOPHER WARD

Christopher Ward, the honest Christopher Ward, revealed earlier this year that he was leaving the to explore other endeavors. The company continues to operate out of Maidenhead, selling watches worldwide without any physical storefronts.

The new Super Compressor is the horophile Marc Schulteis’ request that CW creates a dive watch with the same “super compressor” casing that E Piquerez pioneered. Brands have imitated the form, but none have yet added the specific mechanism that allows a true “super compressor” to remain impermeable up to 600 feet, according to CW.

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CITIZEN

Marvel comics fans can now get a watch that honors their favorite superhero. The Japanese brand collaborated with the Disney-owned entertainment conglomerate to create nine Eco-Drive-inspired styles, each packaged in a themed box with original artwork.

If you think a titanium-cased, ISO-compliant diving watch with a GMT function and antireflective sapphire crystal for £400 sounds impossible, wait till you see Citizen’s Promaster Diver GMT. A screw-down case back ensures water resistance to 200 meters, and Crown and the brand’s Eco-Drive technology eliminates the need to wind or replace the battery. It is powered by light.

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CORUM

“Risk is the reward,” says the Asian-owned Swiss company, which celebrated its 65th anniversary this year with a rebranding campaign that involved enlisting a group of ambassadors who had overcome adversity.

With a flying tourbillon, effective date, power reserve indicator, and a 416-part movement, the Lab 02 is a technical marvel. Flying wheels track the hours, minutes, seconds, and the bridge is set directly into the main plate of the highly skeletonized 45mm watch, which has a sapphire crystal case to allow a complete view of the mechanism. There will only be ten instances given.

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CULEM

Following the company’s introduction by entrepreneur Matthew Cule, whose love of travel prompted him to design a series of solely GMT watches, we introduced readers to Culem in last year’s guide. The case backs include 24 locations engraved with their precise time zone variances regarding GMT and BST.

The 40mm guilloche-dial Frame GMT, now available on a Milanese metal, is the newest addition to the lineup. Thanks to a quick-change system, it may be quickly swapped for the additional Italian leather strap that comes with the package.

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DIESEL

If you prefer to go large and have some horological fun, don your shades and go no farther than Diesel.

If the Chanel J12 X-Ray is out of your price range, try one of Diesel’s see-through Chopped Digital watches. There are three different colors so you can choose: clear, mint, and pink.

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DOLCE&GABBANA

Dolce&Gabbana has preserved the recognizable look of Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana at its core since launching its first high-end watch collection for men in 2012. The Manifattura Italiana Collection was established in 2019, and it is a high-end watchmaking endeavor focusing on handcrafted timepieces only available in special editions of ten, all powered by Dolce&Gabbana movements.

If you prefer to go large and have some horological fun, don your shades and go no farther than Diesel. The piece, which marks the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death, is powered by the unique DG 01.05 caliber and has a moon phase, 24-hour complication, and perpetual helical gear in honor of da Vinci’s horological studies.

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DOXA

One of the excellent dive watch success stories of the current horological era is the rebirth of the Doxa Sub, which was first introduced in 1967. Interestingly, suppose it hadn’t been for the perseverance of a Doxa devotee named Rick Marei, who wanted a new edition of the world’s first orange-dial dive watches to match the paintwork of his beloved Porsche 911. In that case, the company might not have revived it.

The diver’s favorite may now be purchased with chronometer certification in the form of the Sub 300 COSC, which is now available in several more variations than it was back in the 1960s. In addition to the distinctive orange, there are five dial colors to choose from (turquoise, yellow, Navy, silver, or black).

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EMPORIO ARMANI

In its ever-expanding collection, the Italian design brand is likely to have a watch for every guy. The smartwatch lineup now includes large 44.5mm steel models, as well as a three-hander made of scratch-resistant ceramic for analog enthusiasts seeking something conventional with extra durability.

We like the “Leather Strap Watch” since it is appropriately described. To give you some further suggestions, it has a matte-finish case, and it has a set of fizzing yellow hour markers and a vintage-style strap.

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FARER

Farer, a UK-based e-tailer, was quick to offer support to NHS employees while the coronavirus was at its peak in April. The company, co-founded by antique automobile enthusiast Paul Sweetenham, auctioned off one of its promotional Land Rovers with the promise that 100% of the proceeds would go to the charity Help Them Help Us. The price of the 1976 Series III rocketed to £14,850.

Watch the collection: We appreciate the crisp’n’fresh style of the new Maze GMT Bezel, which has a white dial with a subtly adorned “swimming pool tile” imprint. The latest Maze GMT Bezel has a white dial with a softly embellished “swimming pool tile” impression. The bright orange GMT hand sticks out wonderfully, and the “night and day” bezel is made of high-quality aluminum.

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FAVRE-LEUBA

Favre-Leuba would be the second-oldest watch brand in Switzerland if you didn’t know (after Blancpain). It was established in 1737 and had a long and illustrious history of innovation. For example, it developed a timepiece that could survive pressure and altitude up to 3,000 meters in 1962.

The 41mm Raider Deep Blue is less of an armful than some of Favre-more Leuba’s severe tool watches, but it’s still good down to 300 meters and includes a unidirectional dive time bezel. If you’re going to use it for its intended function, you’ll probably choose with a rubber or metal bracelet, but the leather choice gives the watch a whole new personality. Dials are offered in blue or black.

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FOSSIL

The Fossil Group, which produces millions of watches each year under its own label as well as on behalf of other brands like Michael Kors, was formerly a significant participant in the inexpensive watch market. Its dominance has now been challenged by many new entrants, but that hasn’t stopped it from producing some fantastic designs at reasonable rates.

It has a matte-finish case and a set of fizzing yellow hour markers that are taken up by the yellow border of the grained, vintage-style strap, to give you some more ideas.

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FITBIT

Fitbit’s future is a little hazy now that it’s been purchased by Google for a cool $2.1 billion, but its existing offerings aren’t to be sneered at. Even though Barack Obama is known for wearing the original Ionic watch, it was Fitbit’s Versa 2 model in 2019 that ultimately cracked the current wearable formula.

While the stress-detecting Fitbit Sense is an option, the Versa 3 is definitely a better choice for a workout enthusiast. You receive all of the standard fitness monitoring features, as well as a week’s worth of battery life and GPS position data. It’s a great smartwatch for those who don’t have an iPhone.

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FP JOURNE

François-Paul Journe will be remembered as one of the great names in watchmaking in the twenty-first century. An FPJ should be on your radar if you’re wanting to invest in something that’s well-made, rare, and likely to appreciate in value.

The new Chronomètre Résonance, which was launched this year to commemorate the original’s 20th anniversary and incorporates resonance to improve accuracy, is the watch of the collection. Two balancing wheels alternately serve as “exciter” and “resonator” in the system. When both are moving, they form a symphony that leads them to beat in opposite directions, smoothing out imperfections through resonance. £93,600.

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FREDERIQUE CONSTANT

In keeping with its smartwatch advances, Citizen has added a new linked function to the Vitality model, which incorporates an inbuilt sensor that measures the wearer’s heart rate from the wrist.

Since 2009, Frederique Constant has collaborated with the Riva Historical Society to produce a line of Riva-themed timepieces called Runabout, which is dedicated to conserving the boats famous for their ties with the 1950s-1960s jet set. The most recent is this 42mm RHS chronograph with a black or silver dial, limited to 2,888 pieces each, all of which will come with scale Riva models.

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GARMIN

Garmin has done a nice job of diversifying its portfolio in recent years while being best known as the running watch brand among Strava addicts. Check out its selection of exceptionally opulent Marq timepieces, which cover everything from sailing to golf to, of course, athletics.

The Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition, a modern take on a classic Garmin, is a fitness fanatic’s dream, with a plethora of methods to track your preferred workout. So, what’s new this time around? The “Power Glass” that shields the watch’s 1.3-inch display also functions as a solar panel, extending its battery life to more than 10 days.

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GC

Guess watches’ GC division, which is more upscale, offers unique designs and well-made items at a fair price. Chunky chronographs are all the rage this year.

The UrbanCode Yachting is the watch of the collection, thanks to its intriguing elements (and, should we say, style cues like the top-loading screws and waffle face that are plainly “stolen” from higher-end watches). The bronzed finish adds and the “hawser” trim around the bezel is a fun and original touch.

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GEORG JENSEN

“OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA “

Although the world of inexpensive watches appears to be bursting at the seams with designers touting “Scandinavian minimalism,” Georg Jensen, a Danish brand, remains the name that stands out.

The Koppel Grande Date Annual Calendar is unquestionably odd. We enjoy the cylindrical case and the likely one-of-a-kind dial pattern, which is distinct but highly legible. The Swiss movement, which has been adapted with a smart “GJ” winding rotor, is visible through the glass case back.

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GIRARD-PERREGAUX

Following the death of its late, lamented owner, Luigi “Gino” Macaluso (a decade ago this month), Girard-Perregaux has resurrected with enthralling designs and highly technical difficulties befitting its illustrious history.

Quasar was the name of a strange 1970s vehicle with two wheels, a roof, and a Reliant Robin engine, which was popular among “feet first” motorcyclists. The new Girard-Perregaux Quasar Azure is a see-through tourbillon watch with an azure-blue sapphire crystal 46mm casing that has nothing to do with FFM. There will be only eight available, which is significantly fewer than the fatal Quasar’s production run of 21 bikes.

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GLASHÜTTE ORIGINAL

Regular readers of GQ Watch & Jewellery will recall that we were ecstatic when the SeaQ dive watch, which was inspired by the iconic Spezimatic of 1969, arrived last year. Despite the advent of even more horologically sophisticated models this year, such as the £110,000 limited-edition PanoLunarTourbillon, we’re attracted back to the SeaQ as….

This year, however, we’re opting for the newly released blue-dial model. The 39.5mm steel-cased watch features a blue ceramic bezel and comes with a steel or a blue fabric strap, which we think is nicer. 

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GRAFF

Most Graff watches have a “unique selling point” in that they are usually encrusted with diamonds, have intricate movements, and cost a small fortune. But not all of them are like that…

Watch of the Collection: In these odd times, we’ve settled on the 47mm ScubaGraff, which has a helium valve, ultra-luminous dial markings, and a 30-minute drive time display, as well as a helium escape valve. It’s a significant piece of equipment. 

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GREUBEL FORSEY

Visiting the smallest, least pompous booth at the (usually) annual SIHH watch show in Geneva to view the latest advances from some of the industry’s greatest minds is one of the most entertaining parts of the event. Greubel Forsey is his name.

Before the launch of the GMT Sport tourbillon last year, few expected to see a sports watch from the GF works. That is not the case. The Balancier S does not include a tourbillon, but it does have the maker’s distinctive inclined balance wheel and the odd, ovoid case made of salt-resistant titanium that was first seen on the GMT Sport. The first edition will be limited to only 18 copies.

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GUCCI

Gucci’s groovy skateboard-inspired Grip watch was such a hit last year that it’s now available in a dozen other varieties.

Consider this one, which, in addition to the revolving disc that displays the hours and minutes, has a second slot with a “roulette” that can be engaged by a secondary push button to display other words such as “chance,” “future,” “Tenebrae” (Latin for darkness), or “amour.” It’s not exactly necessary, but it’s a lot of fun.

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HAMILTON

With the construction of a custom-made watch for Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi picture Tenet, Hamilton’s total of almost 500 cinematic appearances just climbed. The prop timepieces had a specially built color-changing, Digi-analog display with an ultra-high level of light, based on the Khaki Navy BelowZero model. The design inspired a less complicated £1,890 limited edition with two runs (one with red-tipped seconds hand, the other with blue-tipped seconds hand) of 888 watches, which were delivered in large numbers for the film.

The Khaki Field Titanium Automatic may resemble many military-style watches on the market, but it’s worth a second look because it’s truly exceptional, especially for the price. The movement has an amazing 80-hour power reserve and the 42mm case is composed of lightweight, hypoallergenic, salt-resistant blackened titanium. Also, the nubuck-style strap is rather good.

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HARRY WINSTON

The Swatch Group-owned American brand may not have produced a slew of new products this year, but it did quietly unveil the newest in its ongoing line of “Project Z” Zalium-cased special editions, and we can finally see where all of the efforts went.

Last year, we chose Project Z13, but Project Z14 won in 2021. The dial features an unusual assortment of finishes and serves as an appropriate backdrop for the red retrograde hand, which returns to zero every 30 seconds. Despite the attention to detail, the 42.2mm watch is constructed to last: it comes with a practical rubber strap, suggesting that the watch’s 100-meter water resistance is meant to be utilized. Only 300 will be produced.

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HERMÈS

Philippe Delhotal, Hermès’ head of watch design, has been busy in recent months, releasing new timepieces ranging from the Arceau L’Heure De La Lune to the H08, a sporty, cushion-cased daily wearer for men.

The desire to travel somewhere exotic while not being able to does not stop us from gravitating towards the Slim d’Hermès GMT travel watch. The GMT model (first presented in 2018 with a palladium case) has been updated with a rose gold case and a midnight-blue dial with a grained finish for the little seconds counter and second-time zone indication. Agenhor, a specialized complications maker, created the mechanism.

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H MOSER & CIE

H Moser & Cie has a history of surprising announcements, so learning this summer that it had teamed together with fellow independent atelier MB&F to create a pair of watches based on common aspects in both brands’ work was a pleasant surprise.

But let us return to H Moser and the Streamliner Centre Seconds. Following on from the Streamliner Flyback Chronograph released in January, the new three-hander is a straightforward and appealing timepiece with exceptional attention to detail and a delightful “Matrix Green” fumé display. A domed sapphire crystal tops the 40mm steel case, and the bracelet is a work of art in and of itself.

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HUBLOT

The Big Bang Millennial Pink, developed with Lapo Elkann, scion of Italy’s Agnelli clan and founder of Garage Italia, stands out among the new Hublot pieces set to debut in 2020. “Not in the exclusive sphere of women, nor of males, but truly a symbol of a completely new generation,” according to the Millennial Pink.

Watch of the collection: Hublot has released a special edition of the Classic Fusion Aerofusion Chronograph for retailer Watches Of Switzerland. It has a 45mm black ceramic casing, a black skeleton dial, and the HUB1155 automatic movement, which is made in-house. It’s only available from WOS in the UK and the US and comes with an alligator leather or rubber strap.

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IWC

Most luxury watches businesses quickly adjusted to the coronavirus’s imposed “virtual world,” embracing webinars and Zoom sessions to unveil new collections, for example. But now, thanks to virtual tours of its state-of-the-art production facilities in Schaffhausen, IWC has taken things to a whole new level. To book, send an email to [email protected]

IWC has collaborated with resortwear company Orlebar Brown to develop a capsule collection, which is already in collaboration with Solaris Yachts. The crown jewel is a 44.6mm nautically themed flyback watch with a marine-blue dial, rubber, and co branded buckle from Portugieser Yacht Club Chronograph Edition “Orlebar Brown”.

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JACOB & CO

The jet setters’ favorite just took over as Bugatti’s watch partner after 15 years with Parmigiani Fleurier. The results have been stunning, with four versions already available, including the Chiron Tourbillon, which boasts a model of Bugatti’s 1,500bhp 16-cylinder engine. When a pusher is pressed, the “crankshaft” rotates, the “pistons” pump, and the “turbos” rotate.

Our WOTC is the Opera Scarface, which pays homage to the legendary 1983 film. We were the first to make the announcement on GQ.co.uk. It includes two musical box cylinders that play the song “Bolivia.” Only 88 of them will be produced.

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JAEGER-LECOULTRE

Fans of the Kingsman franchise may recall that Bremont and TAG Heuer provided timepieces to the props team in the past. Now it’s Jaeger-turn, LeCoultre’s with the JLC Master Ultra Thin Kingsman Knife (£26,900; 100 pieces) created in conjunction with the upcoming prequel The King’s Man.

The new Master Grande Tradition Grande Complication is the watch of the collection, demonstrating that the house is running on all cylinders. The 16-piece version has a minute repeater with a sapphire crystal as its resonator, a flying tourbillon regulator that rotates on its axis every minute and orbits the dial every “sidereal” day, and a minute repeater with a sapphire crystal as its resonator.

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JAQUET DROZ

Jaquet Droz, a company known for its ornate enamel dials, recently announced a collaboration with fantasy artist John Howe, a Canadian-born, Swiss-based illustrator who served as the main conceptual designer for The Lord Of The Rings film trilogy alongside Briton Alan Lee.

The Perpetual Calendar Éclipse is an appropriate top pick because the original Jaquet-Droz was a talented engineer who constructed wonderful automaton figures. An automated mechanism with two spring barrels is hidden below the fired-enamel dial. The perpetual calendar and retrograde moon phase display are powered by this, which provides a 68-hour power reserve.

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JUNGHANS

The German company has an annual practice of releasing presentation sets to celebrate its past partnerships with Max Bill, the Swiss artist, architect, and designer who designed the kitchen clocks that were found in households across Europe in the 1950s. 

The Form A Titan is our favorite watch from the line. It has a basic form, a lightweight titanium casing, and a matte-finish dial with an embossed minute track, as the name suggests. You get a nice self-winding movement and the option of a buffalo leather or recycled PET plastic strap.

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LARSSON & JENNINGS

Andrew Jennings, a Wirral-born former City boy, and vintage watch fan, founded this hugely successful seller of affordable watches and other accessories in London in 2012 with the backing of Swedish business associate Joakim Larsson, hence the name and some of the brand’s design concepts’ Scandinavian-style minimalism.

The 38mm Meridian Milanese has the look of a much more costly watch, with its well-constructed, skeletonized hands, and engine-turned tiny seconds subdial. Another advantage is that a portion of the revenues will be donated to the Red Cross.

LONGINES

Walter von Känel, 79, has stepped down as CEO of Longines after a 51-year career with the business, 32 of which he was in charge. Longines became the world’s fourth-largest watchmaker by revenue during his leadership, with £1.36 billion in sales last year.

Longines has such a fantastic library that it merely needs to dip into it now and again, duplicate what it finds, and hit the target. That’s exactly what happened with the Military Marine Nationale, an enlarged replica of a 33.5mm variant commissioned by the French Navy in 1947. Blued hands, the ancient “Fab Suisse” signature, and a leather strap round out the retro look.

LOUIS ERARD

Louis Erard collaborated with the legendary Alain Silberstein, who developed his own dial brand during the 1990s and designed Bauhaus-inspired watches with details in vivid colors, to create some of the funkiest watches of 2020. Only a couple of the Erard x Silberstein pieces remained as GQ went to press (only 178 of each model were made). They’re absolutely worth a shot as future collectibles.

The Excellence Regulator with a green dial backdrop is an interesting and attractive watch in the line. It has a central minute hand with the hours and seconds displayed on separate subdials for a more precise time reading.

LOUIS VUITTON

This summer, Virgil Abloh, the artistic director of Louis Vuitton menswear, collaborated with Japanese Human Made creator Nigo to design a one-of-a-kind LV capsule collection. The Tambour Horizon Monogram, a fresh twist on LV’s original smartwatch, was part of this. Nigo’s distinctive mallard image adorns the dial above the AMOLED display.

The Damier Cobalt Chronograph 46mm, with a dial based on the brand’s renowned Damier canvas and a huge, dramatic “V” signature across the top in red and white, takes some beating. Buyers may mix and match straps and select an extra one using a handy online configurator.

LUMINOX

Bear Grylls, adventurer, survival expert, and Chief Scout has traveled the world wearing Breitlings, Bremonts, and Casios – but now he’s fully on board with Luminox, creator of truly durable watches. Bear Grylls Survival models are now available in six different variations, with two in each of the Sea, Land, and Master collections.

The 45mm Outdoor Explorer 3798 from the Land series is the watch of the collection.

MI is an adventurer’s dream. It contains a chronograph and a walking speed scale, as well as a braided paracord strap that can be unraveled in an emergency. When things become a little too much, wearers may find Grylls’ mantra, “Never give up,” etched on the case back.

MARLOE WATCH COMPANY

The Perthshire-based, internet-only firm specializes in adventure-themed timepieces, so it held a series of online “lockdown sessions” earlier this year where fans could talk with athletes and outdoorsmen about motivation and survival.

The freshly unveiled Atlantic Chronoscope draws design inspiration from the early days of transatlantic air travel in the early 1900s. Each model has a unique case that has been polished and brushed, an anti-reflective sapphire crystal, and a strong Seiko NE88a automatic mechanical movement at its core.

MAURICE LACROIX

Watch companies like commemorating anniversaries. There were few in 2020, but one worth mentioning was the 20th anniversary of the Pontos, which we’ve long thought to be the greatest watch in the Maurice Lacroix lineup.

To commemorate the event, ML has released new versions of the Pontos mono-pusher chronograph, ordinary chronograph, and Day-Date model — the latter of which we prefer. Choose between a steel case with a brushed-silver “sunray” dial and a bronze case with a green dial, rose-gold PVD, and a brown leather strap.

MB&F

MB&F, a niche producer, informed us at the height of the coronavirus outbreak, “24 of our 27 sites of sale throughout the world are closed.” The issue hastened the brand’s transition to e-commerce, which it has done in a characteristically unusual manner by only making a few select models available at any given moment.

The new HM10 “Bulldog” watch is an example of MB&F at its most inventive and original. The canine-themed watch has a circular body with two aluminum time-display “eyes” and a studded “collar” that functions as a winding crown. The power reserve display is housed in an “opening jaw.”

MECCANICHE VELOCI

Meccaniche Veloci, situated in Milan, didn’t strike us as a promising dial name when it debuted in 2006 with the goal of producing massive, multi-dial vehicle watches. The company has not only survived, but has flourished into a creator of innovative, well-finished, and very unique timepieces after relocating its manufacturing site to Geneva in 2016.

The new Icon FuoriGiri employs eye-catching “Modena Yellow” (the official color of Ferrari’s first home city) to strike a chord with MV’s petrolhead fanbase. The 49mm casing is decorated with the circular graining featured on classic sports car dashboards.

MICHAEL KORS

By fashion watch standards, Michael Kors’ men’s collection is pleasingly minimal and straightforward. This year’s Fossil models include four “Gen 5” smartwatches with metal cases and s, as well as about 20 classic, analog variants.

Can’t afford an IWC Top Gun Edition “Mojave Desert” for £8,500? Then think about settling with MK’s “Oversized Gage Black-Tone And Woven” endeavor. It has a 45mm steel case, a gunmetal finish, with a classic aviator dial for £219.

MONDAINE

Being a Mondaine watch designer must be a unique task, as it entails continually working around the same, fundamental watch — a smaller replica of the clock hung over platforms at most Swiss train stations.

The collection’s watch: By experimenting with the strap, the design team has developed a model that is unlike anything else on the market. The “Essence” theme uses one made of natural rubber, recycled plastic bottles, or wool-based fabrics with a cork lining. The latter in houndstooth looks excellent, but a quick-change mechanism makes switching from one appearance to another a breeze. 

MONTBLANC

The German luxury goods company has enlisted the services of film director Spike Lee, as well as actors Taron Egerton and Chen Kun, to promote its wares in a new worldwide marketing campaign. It is titled “What Moves You, Makes You,” and it claims to utilize true tales to urge the next generation of movers and shakers to pursue their passions in order to achieve success.

The highlight of the collection is the 1858 Automatic 24H single-hander, which is one of seven new models in the Heritage collections. You’ll get used to it, and it doubles as a compass, with a steel case, bronze bezel, and your option of leather, nylon, or metal straps or a metal bracelet for roughly £2,575.

MOVADO

Achilles Ditesheim began his watch firm in La Chaux-de-Fonds in 1881 at the age of 19, christening it “Movado” (Esperanto for “always in motion”) in 1905. The Museum Watch, developed in 1947 by Nathan George Horwitt, is the company’s trademark model, with a minimalist black dial highlighted solely by a gold dot at 12 o’clock.

The Museum Classic is the most recent interpretation of Horwitt’s design. This one is 40mm in diameter and comes with a basic steel, black or gold PVD or black leather strap and dials in blue, black, or mother-of-pearl – always with the renowned dot at 12 o’clock. 

NIXON

When I tell my kid that he’s wasting his time worrying over surfing and snowboarding, he simply answers, “Nixon.” Not a slur, but the name of the firm was founded in 1997 in California by Andy Laats and Chad DiNenna to make inexpensive gear for fellow skaters. They sold it for more than £100 million within a decade. Result.

The Time Teller may appear to be inspired by the life of a turtle, but the case and bracelet are constructed of acetate, the same material used for glasses frames, combs, and other benign products. 

NOMOS GLASHÜTTE

If proof were required that simple is best, go no farther than the Tangente Sport, which this year enabled German manufacturer Nomos to win the IF Design Award for a record-breaking ninth time. The multi-category competition received 7,298 submissions.

We both agree. The Tangente Sport is the most recent automated Nomos. It’s water-resistant to 1,000 feet, comes with a black or white dial with contrasting buff or blue hands, and comes with a magnificently constructed and supremely soft metal. 

OMEGA

A redesign of the Constellation collection and the launch of new sailing watches to commemorate the brand’s partnership with Swiss team Alinghi, as well as its long-standing support of America’s Cup defender Emirates Team New Zealand, are among the most notable.

The Diver 300M James Bond Numbered Edition, featuring a platinum gold case and a black enamel dial etched with the rifling pattern found in rifle barrels. The “Bond family’s” coat of arms is engraved on the sapphire crystal case back, and the dial is “secretly signed” with the 007 insignia at seven o’clock. Each watch is delivered in a specially designed Globe-Trotter briefcase. 

ORIS

Oris awarded timepieces to 50 chosen “local heroes” throughout the world at the height of the coronavirus outbreak. Captain Tom Moore, who famously raised more than £32 million by running 100 laps around his lawn, was one of them. He requested that his timepiece be auctioned and the proceeds donated to the NHS.

The Oris x Momotaro watch is a bronze and steel version of the Divers Sixty-Five model. It has a smoky green dial and an indigo denim strap with signature “battle stripes,” suggesting a brand relationship with Momotaro, a Japanese jeans manufacturer.

PANERAI

“Pam cast” is the name of Panerai’s new digital storytelling platform, which is packed with stories about the Italian-rooted watch brand’s legacy and present goals, including news about model debuts and other events of interest to the world’s Paneristi.

With the 36th America’s Cup set to take place next year, Panerai’s Luminor Luna Rossa GMT features a dial constructed of Scafotech, a polymer developed from carbon fiber waste gathered from the Italian team’s AC75 yacht’s hull and hydrofoils. The 42mm watch’s bezel is composed of Panerai’s superior Carbotech carbon fiber, and it will be available in a 250-piece limited edition. 

PARMIGIANI FLEURIER

Fans of Parmigiani Fleurier’s exquisitely made dishes haven’t had much to write about lately. Davide Traxler has been focusing on restructuring, particularly in Asia, which has resulted in a lack of fresh releases. But there is one that is a real treat…

The new Tonda Tondagraph GT contains the obligatory chronograph but, interestingly, combines it with a finely integrated yearly calendar. The 42mm steel case suggests that this is a real all-around watch, the quality of which only those in the know would appreciate. Only 200 will be produced. 

PATEK PHILIPPE

Following the postponement of this year’s watch exhibitions, it was speculated that the great Patek Philippe will postpone all-new model announcements until 2021. It didn’t, instead of releasing a quartet of stunning timepieces that included a new ref 5303-minute repeater that displays the striking mechanism on the dial side, a redesign of the iconic ref 5270 perpetual calendar chronograph, and a fantastic reinterpretation of the ref 5370 split-seconds chronograph.

All of the aforementioned are wonderful, difficult, and desirable components, but we opted to prioritize attainability while choosing on our WOTC. So here’s the ref 6007A-001 Calatrava, a 1,000-piece limited edition produced to honor the launch of the brand’s new production facility in Geneva. It may be a modest steel-cased automatic watch with a 40mm steel case, but your grandkids will thank you for purchasing it. 

PAUL SMITH

We’ve long wondered what might happen if a major Swiss watchmaker relied on Paul Smith’s creative talent. Maybe one day we’ll find out…

Until then, we’re pleased with his budget-friendly own-label products, particularly the scrumptious petrol and black leather chronograph with a lovely teal-colored minute track, and a red-anodized Chrono button. Apart from the enticing price, everything about it implies it should be signed by a well-known watch brand. 

PIAGET

The legendary 1970s jet-set favorite has been doing wonderful things in 2020, not least the debut of its “Infinitely Personal” online configurator, which allows for a selection of dial color, case size, and strap style. It is inspired by the “Style Selector” service, which debuted more than 50 years ago at Piaget’s New York shop.

The Altiplano Ultimate Concept was a concept in 2018, but it’s currently in production. Most of the existing small components used in a typical watch had to be rescaled to a gossamer 2mm, with wheels lowered from 0.2mm thick to 0.12mm and the sapphire crystal reduced from 1mm to 0.2mm. It is based on the application.

PORSCHE DESIGN

Following on from Piaget’s online customizer, Porsche Design’s watch division has announced the creation of a mind-boggling one-and-a-half million possible designs using an internet configurator modeled after the one used by automobile customers.

This custom-made Porsche Design watch was produced to commemorate the release of the new, limited-edition 911 Targa 4S Heritage Design Edition. The titanium-cased chronograph comes with a bracelet that matches the color codes on the automobile. Unfortunately, the only way to obtain it is to purchase a £136,643 Targa 4S Heritage. 

RADO

The Swatch Group-owned brand has lately entered the social media realm (Pinterest; TikTok) to spread the word about its new designs and brand activities.

Rado is the “master of materials” because of its long-standing use of high-tech ceramic for many of its watch casings, but its most coveted recent release is inspired by old bronze. The new Captain Cook is a 42mm reimagining of the brand’s iconic diving watch from 1962. The holly-green dial is a joy, and it promises to provide an ever-increasing contrast as the 300-meter water-resistant bronze casing patinas with age. 

RAYMOND WEIL

Raymond Weil’s long-standing relations with the music industry have led to the reintroduction and redesign of its massive, rectangular-cased Don Giovanni Cos Grande jumping-hour watch. The firm has vowed to donate 10% of all sales earnings from the 50mm giant to Nordoff Robbins music therapy organization.

The new Freelancer Jimi Hendrix 42mm chronograph is the watch of the line. It was developed in collaboration with the Hendrix family and includes dial elements inspired by the guitar legend’s Woodstock festival costume, his left-hand playing style, and the instrument’s strings. His famous quote, “Music is my religion,” is etched onto the tachymeter scale. 

RESERVOIR

Reservoir, a French company, has quickly gained a devoted following since its debut in 2016 with a creative, retrograde minute, jumping-hour watch inspired by the appearance of a vintage Mini speedometer. There’s now a wide range of models inspired by gauges from automobiles, planes, submarines, and diving equipment – and the brand is now the official time partner of the IDEC Sport endurance racing team in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The Supercharged Classic Red Zone is a real head-turner. It’s limited to 250 pieces and is styled like a classic car’s tachometer. It comes with a black calf-leather strap as well as a nylon Nato-style alternative. 

RICHARD MILLE

Richard Mille (both the guy and the brand) is well-known for his/its out-of-the-box thinking. So it’s no surprise that the latest RM ambassador isn’t another athlete, yachtsman, model, or rock star, but the cerebral Thomas Roussel, the adaptable French composer who has set the musical scene at shows from Cartier to Michael Kors, provided background music for Nissan and Nike TV commercials, and composed scores for a couple of extra feature films.

Do you require a bulletproof watch? RM can provide. The grey Cermet casing of its new RM 11-05 measures 50mm by 42.7mm and is believed to be almost as hard as a diamond yet as light as titanium. It’s already used in aircraft fuselages and anti-ballistic protection systems, so it should keep the titanium-based movement, which has a GMT display, a 24-hour flyback chronograph, and an annual calendar, safe. Only 140 will be produced. 

ROGER DUBUIS

The Excalibur Superbia is Roger Dubuis’ newest “megawatt,” composed of palladium-enriched white gold, set with 600 tetrahedron-shaped diamonds, and driven by a double flying tourbillon movement. The words “memento mori” are etched on the mechanism. Discuss.

Enough of that; let’s get back to the basics. The Excalibur Twofold is a 45mm mineral composite fiber watch with a 301-part hand-wound movement and a double flying tourbillon. This, as well as the strap, is coated with luminous material, allowing the entire ensemble to glow in the dark. 

ROLEX

The cancellation of 2020’s watch displays placed the world’s numerous Rolex enthusiasts, investors, and bloggers in a state of shock since it meant there might be nothing for them to concentrate on for the rest of the year. But then July rolled around, and the internet was flooded with reports that a date had been set for the unveiling of new Rolex models. The wait lasted nearly two months until the great Crown unveiled the new Oyster Perpetual, Sky-Dweller, Datejust, and Submariner.

With its 41mm case size, the new Submariner sparked the most interest. The WOTC, on the other hand, is the new Oyster Perpetual (pictured).

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ROTARY

With a cheap brand, you may get a premium style for less. Rotary’s most recent offers, developed in collaboration with the watch store and e-commerce site WatchNation.

The Super 7 Scuba is a 42mm steel watch with a water-resistance rating of 300 meters, a screw-down crown and case back, an automatic Miyota movement, and a sapphire crystal. There are four different dial colors available, as well as rubber or metal wrists. 

SAMSUNG

No one has been in the smartwatch business for as long as Samsung, and after almost a decade of manufacturing wearables, there’s a lot of refinement to be found in its product lineup. This is divided into two parts: the more classic Watch 3 and the more cheap, fitness-focused Active2.

The Watch 3 is Samsung’s most current product in its dueling smartwatch series, which it updates in a TikTok manner (from late 2020). Simply put, it’s the greatest smartwatch you can purchase for Android phones (i.e., those produced by Samsung, Google, and others), with a beautiful design, a plethora of fitness tracking choices, and a more-than-serviceable app collection. 

SCUDERIA FERRARI

The Movado Group manufactures timepieces for Ferrari, allowing Tifosi and other Ferraristi to wear their hearts on their wrists at a reasonable price.

The Pilota Evo Limited Edition is the top-of-the-line Scuderia Ferrari watch, a 44mm chronograph with a sporty black and red finish, and a silicone rubber created entirely in Switzerland. An aluminum bezel insert and a red anodized chronograph start button are nice accents. The quartz movement is of high quality, keeping the price within four figures. 

SEIKO

Seiko and its higher-end stablemate Grand Seiko provide a genuine alternative to “Swiss manufactured.” The fit, polish, design, and quality are everything you’d expect from a premium Japanese brand, and Seiko’s watchmakers’ horological expertise is unrivaled.

We can’t get enough of the new “tuna cans” spin on classic Seiko diving watches. The new Urban Safari model is a variant on the Prospex Street line, which was introduced two years ago. Choose between a mechanical, three-hand movement (shown) and a solar-powered quartz chronograph – albeit only the mech versions have the real tuna-can aesthetic. 

SHINOLA

Shinola, a Detroit-based watch and accessory manufacturer, debuted in the city with a boom nine years ago. The brand’s level of noise has now decreased, but it continues to develop new models in its line of inexpensive, high-quality timepieces from Motor City’s former General Motors Argonaut building.

If you appreciate the appearance of a traditional watch, you’ll adore the new Runwell. It has a 47mm sandblasted gunmetal PVD casing, a creamy “antique” matte-finish dial, and what Shinola calls a “Cattail” leather strap that allows it to be easily swapped out for any of the brand’s hundreds of aftermarket products. 

SKAGEN

Skagen, a Danish company founded more than 30 years ago, was among the first to apply the Scandinavian minimalism design to timepieces. Others have since followed, and Skagen’s repertoire has grown to embrace styles of all kinds.

The Horizont is distinguished by its “regulator”-style dial, which features a single central minute hand and a separate 24-hour counter. It is limited to 500 copies. 

SWATCH

Swatch has unveiled the second collaboration with Japanese streetwear brand Bape (AKA A Bathing Ape) in the form of a three-piece series of 47mm watches with white, black, or grey “multi-camo” strap patterns and bezels engraved with the names of “giant cities.” Bape also created camo packaging.

Swatch watches are not only functional but also enjoyable. And they don’t get much more entertaining than the new models created in conjunction with British pop art pair Joanne Tatham and Tom O’Sullivan. They created four Swatch designs, including a cat, the Loch Ness Monster, a rainbow-patterned face, and a “beast” (pictured). 

TAG HEUER

The introduction of a new CEO in the shape of the young Frédéric Arnault, the son of Bernard Arnault, creator of the LVMH luxury goods business, of which TAG is the largest watch brand, has been TAG Heuer’s major news in the last year. Arnault Jr. was just 25 years old when he was appointed, but he had been the brand’s strategy and digital director for over two years.

The Carrera 160 Years Montreal Limited Edition is our favorite new arrival out of all of them. The original Montreal, with a 42mm cushion case and a white dial with quirky red, yellow, and blue accents, was an outstanding chronograph design in 1972, according to Heuer researchers.

THOMAS SABO

If you’re the kind who wears his front-door key on a chain swinging from a belt loop and chews the heads off birds before eating them uncooked (with feathers), you’ll dig some of the German label Thomas Sabo’s more out-there, Gothic-inspired creations. But there are lots of options for your wallflowers as well.

The Rebel At Heart chronograph, with its densely studded 43mm steel case and matching steel, is the collection’s standout piece. There’s a nice Miyota quartz movement (somewhere) within, and the display has a tachymeter scale for calculating speed and distance. 

TIFFANY & CO

The American jeweler has a long tradition in watchmaking. For example, did you know that the Tiffany Timer of 1868 was one of the world’s earliest stopwatches, or that in 1875, Charles Lewis Tiffany founded what was once Switzerland’s biggest watch factory? True, he eventually sold it to Patek Philippe, but that’s another tale…

The rectangular “East-West” is so named because its dial is rotated 90 degrees from the standard, as is customary with vintage driving watches. The Tiffany Blue colorway is our favorite. 

TIMEX

We find it strange when individuals say they have a watch “but it’s simply a Timex.” Don’t they realize the US brand is one of the most significant, influential, original, and intriguing dial brands of the last century? When it switched to manufacturing munitions timers during the war, it even created a waterproof plant that could be completely submerged to avoid detection from the air.

The collection’s standout piece is this retro-cool but modern T80 Rainbow LCD timepiece. It has a split-second chronograph, alarm, date, and Indiglo backlighting and is decorated with rainbow stripes. The same pricing applies to silver and gold finishes.

TISSOT

Many watch manufacturers had their sports ambitions derailed this year, but Tissot was able to put the name out there as the long-term sponsor of the Tour de France, which resumed at the end of August after two months’ delay.

The Heritage Navigator Chrono Auto 1973, which symbolizes Tissot’s association with Kessel Classics, the automobile restoration and vintage racing management organization operated by Ronnie Kessel, son of the late Swiss F1 racer Loris, whom Tissot sponsored, is our favorite watch in the collection. You may choose between “panda” (white dial, black counters) and “reverse panda” designs. 

TOMMY HILFIGER

Concerned that you aren’t young enough to wear a Tommy Hilfiger watch?

You shouldn’t be since there’s something for everyone. We prefer the 44mm Dual Time Brown Leather model since it’s readable and only costs $150.

TUDOR

The more cheap Rolex stablemate is incapable of making a mistake; every new design it creates becomes an instant must-have hit. The Black Bay 58 “Navy Blue” is a 39mm diving watch that is loyal to Tudor’s earlier models (case size, snowflake hour hand, blue dial) but boasts the newest in-house movement and is so well crafted that it comes with a five-year transferable guarantee. That’s not terrible for $2,520. Or you might pay ten times as much and get a vintage version that you’d be afraid to wear near water…

We propose purchasing a Heritage Chrono, the modern version of Tudor’s original chronograph, which debuted in the 1970s. Take a look around at what else you might acquire for equivalent money – taking Tudor quality and history into consideration – and you’ll quickly realize: not much.