Most watches will give you accurate time, however few fall in to the category of a true luxury timepiece. Watch connoisseurs will agree that a true luxury watch should withstand the test of time, both in style and craftsmanship. This is true for most Italian luxury watch makers, as many have been around for over 100 years. For those looking to buy their first luxury watch, the options are many. The purpose of this guide is to help you make an informed decision, and hopefully help you in your quest for a fine timepiece.
Many men's and women's watches fall in the category of a luxury watch. Luxury watches can exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars, however you should look to spend at least $1,000 for a fine timepiece. It is possible to find considerable discounts online and one could obtain an entry level luxury watch for a few hundred dollars. Luxury watches could include a gold case or bracelet, a diamond encrusted bezel, or simply a stainless steel timepiece made with exceptional craftsmanship.
Choosing A Style:
The first question you should ask yourself when shopping for a luxury watch is, what purpose do you want it to serve? Do you want a sleek looking chronograph to represent your professional status? Is this watch going to be a gem encrusted piece, worn only for special occasions? Will this be a gift to commemorate a special event, like a new job, or retirement. You have to decide how often, and in which situations you will be wearing your new luxury timepiece.
Here are some features you should consider in choosing in a luxury watch:
o Band: A metal bracelet, leather strap, or even a rubber band.
o Case: Round, rectangular, tonneau or square shape.
o Materials: Gold, platinum, silver, stainless steel, titanium, or ceramic.
o Gems: Diamonds or other gemstones; set in the dial, case or bracelet.
o Movement: Mechanical, automatic or quartz.
o Specs: Analog or digital dial; a divers watch with water resistance, a chronograph with a stop watch setting; calendars, moon phase dials, etc.
o Brand: A traditional and legendary company like Omega or Patek or a newer designer label like Franck Muller.
Is the price right?
Luxury watches can range in price anywhere from $1000 to several hundreds of thousands of dollars. Generally speaking, you should expect to pay at least $1000, but with a little online research, you could find an entry level luxury watch for considerably less. It is important to decide on your budget beforehand, this will save you a lot of time and frustration.
As an online seller I see a common problem, especially with us Americans. Americans love to live above their means, and this is certainly the case for fine timepieces. Many people are looking to buy a watch that will end up putting them in financial debt. When shopping for a luxury watch, you should be looking to get a deal, not a steal. If you are trying to get a $5,000 TAG Heuer for $800 dollars, then you are going to have a hard time at it. This is the reason why the counterfeit market exists.
This leads me to a more philosophical point; when one is looking for a luxury watch, you should want to pay around retail price. I know a lot of people will disagree, but part of the pleasure of buying a luxury watch, is being able to afford one. You should not be looking to buy a new Mercedes for $10,000 and the same holds true for fine watches. My question is why would you want to? A Mercedes Benz is intended for those making over $100,000, not those making $30,000. Unfortunately, that does not stop many of us from leasing that Mercedes, or Range Rover and remaining in debt. If you cannot afford a $5,000 watch, then buy one more within your budget. It's that simple.
I cannot tell you the amount of times I have had people bid $200 on a watch costing over $7,000, and then send me a message asking if they are close to reserve! Everyone wants a bargain, but many people are completely clueless, and these are the people that end up buying fake watches. You may not want to hear that, but it is the truth. Long story short, Rolexes and Omegas are meant for those who can afford them. If you want one of these watches, you have to earn the kind of money that warrants that kind of purchase.
The Make Up Of A Luxury Watch
Luxury watches naturally incorporate the finest materials in the world. Many luxury watches use 14kt or 18kt yellow gold on the band or case. White or rose gold are also popular materials used for fine timepieces. The most expensive of all metals used in watch making is platinum. Many very fine luxury watches simply use stainless steel bands and bracelets.
Leather straps are a bit more casual than metal bracelets, and provide a more toned-down look. They may come in calfskin, lizard, or alligator patterns. For those looking for a bit more flash, a gold bracelet will provide this look. A solid gold band will be more expensive, but also be an investment in itself.
Diamond watches convey an air of glamour and even opulence. Many colorful gemstones are encrusted in to some of the more high-end luxury watch designs. You want to make sure the gemstones are real, as this will add to the value of the timepiece.
Horology is the process watchmakers use in the crafting of fine, precise timepieces. Watch enthusiasts tend prefer manual wind or automatic watches. Mechanical movements display the skill of the watch maker and are generally used in the more elite designs of luxury watches. Quartz movements are more precise and do not require as much maintenance.
Fine watch making is an old tradition started out of Switzerland, and remains a passion for many today. Functions other than basic timekeeping, such as the stopwatch on a chronograph, are referred to as complications. Complications tend to increase the price of the watch and display additional skills of a watch maker. I hope this luxury watch buying guide helpful. Good luck in your quest for a fine timepiece.