If money were no object, what would you like to do? Aside from buying a whole island in Greece and naming a star after you, you would still need an accurate and beautifully crafted watch to adorn your wrist when trying the 24 carats Golden Tomahawk at Nusr-Et Dubai. A watch that when you look at it tells you precisely the time and reminds you how rich you are. That type of dress watch that suits your tuxedo and yells for attention. Well, you are in the right place as in this article, we will take a look at some of the most luxurious dress watches money can buy. From Geneva’s centuries-old craftsmen to The Land of The Rising Sun, prepare to surf through some of the most elegant dress watches on the luxury line.
Inspired by the fearsome combat tanks from World War 1, Cartier Tank is one of the most iconic dress watches ever made. It was created by Mr. Louis Cartier in 1917 and throughout its existence, the watch has been worn by many world celebrities including here Princess Diana, Mohammad Ali, and Jacqueline Kennedy. What you will find in every Cartier Tank, are the bold Ruman numerals, the classic sapphire cabochon surmounted crown, and baton hands. All in perfect harmony with the rectangular-shaped case and finished with a leather strap. Price range: Starting from $2.500 for quartz models.
Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGZ007
As extraterrestrial as it can get, the Grand Seiko Spring Drive masterpiece belongs to a limited edition of only 50 pieces manufactured. Most likely, by the time you will have read this article, it would probably be gone. The so coveted Japanese dress watch is worked at the highest standard of craftsmanship and yells for attention.
It comes with a platinum case and a shimmering dial where the Grand Seiko’s craftsmen have hand-engraved a pattern that depicts the starry skies above Achi in Shinshu, considered as the most beautiful village in Japan. Underneath, ticks the unique Spring Drive movement caliber 9R02 with an accuracy rating of ±1 seconds per day and provides up to 84 hours of power reserve. Further features include a dual-curved sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating on the inner surface, a blue crocodile leather strap, and a see-through case back. Price range: EUR 80.000 exclusively available through Grand Seiko boutiques. Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Date
Grandly elegant and recognizable by its sleek design, the Master Control collection of JLC expresses the pure art of watchmaking. Although sometimes left in the shadows of Reverso, Master Control is still a beloved dress watch that will most definitely drive attention. The model we picked, Master Control Date comes in a pure stainless steel case whose shape drives inspiration from the popular wristwatches of the 1950s.
The silvered grey sunray-brushed dial houses a combination of Arabic numerals and markers, perfectly aligned along the date window positioned at three o’clock. Bringing a vintage touch, the watch is finished with a light-brown calfskin leather strap to highlight once again the contemporary lines of Master Control. Price range: $10.000
Akrivia Rexhep Rexhepi
As part of our continuous efforts in promoting new and bona fide experts in watchmaking, we wanted to include Akrivia as one of our picks for the elegant dress watches for men. It is exciting to know that the young watchmaker is founded only in 2012 in Geneva by the father-and-son team Rexhepi. Featuring strong case designs and ambitious in-house complicated movements, every Akrivia watch comes from the hands of the creators filled with a youthful spirit. The brand is unrecognized by the masses and it flies under the radar. For more, feel free to visit their website and learn everything you want to know about them.
Patek Philippe Calatrava ref. 5196J-001
If you are looking for the dress watch of your dreams, please don’t let the humble Patek Philippe Calatrava pass unnoticed. The Swiss watchmaker needs little to no introduction. Pioneer of countless technical advances, world-known for creating highly sought-after timepieces, a Patek Philippe is a symbol of wealth and stature.
It is highly accurate and every time you look at it reminds you how rich you are. Calatrava is their precious line of elegant dress watches. Since its first debut in 1932, the watch has resisted the time and is today loved by many for its pure lines and supreme elegance. Calatrava ref. 5196J-001 comes in a silvery opaline dial with gold applied hour markers. The 37mm yellow gold case is matched with a shiny chocolate brown alligator strap. Price range: $20.000
Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921
Same as the original, this unusual dress watch from Vacheron Constantin reinterprets the once glorious model launched in the American market in 1921 during the Roaring Twenties. The creative exquisite character is given by the diagonal reading of the time and the crown, boldly placed between the one and two o’clock position.
The functional idea after the design was to give the wearer something unique, like keeping track of the time without needing to turn the wrist. As for our model here, its 18K pink gold case houses a railway train dial with black-painted Arabic numerals and a small seconds unusually positioned between two and four o’clock position. Under the dial, its manual winding movement made of 127 parts provides up to 65 hours of power reserve. Price range: $30K to $50K.
Panerai Luminor Due – Piccolo Due
The now Swiss watch brand with Italian roots dates back to 1860 when Giovanni Panerai opened a small watchmaker’s shop in Florence. Throughout the years, the brand has been making watches for the Royal Italian Navy and is recognized for its close relations with Rolex. Their watches are characterized by the gigantic, almost frightening crown guard. More of a stylistic choice and less about functionality, the crown guard is a throwback to the good old days when they were a necessity in improving durability and water resistance.
And even though it doesn’t “comply” with the simple design of a dress watch, Luminor Piccolo Due is undoubtedly one of the finest dress watches in this article. It comes in a lightweight 38mm brushed titanium case and an alligator dark blue strap keeps the timepiece attached to your wrist. The dial is simply astonishing! There you will find Panerai’s signature design – small seconds sub-dial at nine o’clock, a combination of Arabic numerals and markers, and supreme luminescence. Price range: $10.000
Rolex Cellini Time
If you ask someone on the street to tell you the name of the first watch that comes to their minds, I bet it’s Rolex. The highly regarded Swiss brand has established itself as an authority in the watch industry and it’s easy to understand why when looking at Cellini Time.
Rolex has been crafting traditional dress watches in the Cellini line since 1961 and the pictures don’t pay justice to its beauty. The 18-carat white gold case is even shinier from close and the simplicity of the dial will most definitely start a conversation.
With their Cellini line of dress watches, Rolex pays tribute to the timeless codes of classic watchmaking. Elegant modernity at its finest is a sum of the 18-carat white gold used for the case & dial appliques, the alligator black leather strap, and domed sapphire crystal. And considering that with Rolex precision comes first, a perpetual mechanical self-winding movement calibre 3132 provides a power reserve of approx. 48 hours and a precision rate of -2/+2 seconds per day. Price range: $10.000
IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Automatic 40
From many considered as their “holy grail dress watch”, IWC Schaffhausen is a factory of accuracy fitted in timeless designs. It was founded in 1868 in Schaffhausen, Switzerland by Mr. Florentine Ariosto Jones, an American watchmaking pioneer who got some significant help from the Swiss watchmakers of the time. Today, hundreds of designs later and after more than 150 years of uninterrupted efforts in developing the extraterrestrial process of timekeeping, the Portugieser Automatic stands tall in front of the watchmaking industry. The Portugieser Automatic 40 ref. IW358306 features a vintage design with the 18-carat gold case and the railway train white dial. Underneath, an in-house automatic self-winding movement calibre 82200 is visible from the sapphire crystal case back. The watch provides up to 60 hours of power reserve and you will love it. Price range: $20.000
Breguet Classique 5177
Here you have the brand whose creator is attributed as one of the best and most innovative watchmakers of all time. Abraham-Louis Breguet is the creator of tourbillon, the famous Breguet hands, and is respected by watchmakers all around the globe for being the first to use the guilloché technique on its dials. Classique 5177 comes in 18-carat white gold and leverages a self-winding movement with 55 hours of power reserve and a calendar function. It is simple and might as well be the most classic dress watch you will find. On the dial, you will find the Breguet hands making their infinite rotation around white Arabic numerals. The date window is perfectly positioned at the three o’clock position. Price range: $20.000