You’ve decided that it’s time to invest in a luxury timepiece, but where do you start? Given the plethora of conflicting advice out there, we’ve narrowed down your pre-purchase considerations to 3 key points, which you can use as a checklist when shopping for your first big purchase. A quality luxury watch will transcend generations and keep time for years on end, so it is important that you get your first purchase right. There’s no use rushing into a big decision only to be met with the dreaded buyer’s remorse - after all, a luxury watch should be seen as an investment, not an everyday purchase!
Let’s get into the top 3 things you should consider before making your luxury watch purchase.
What’s your Budget?
Before getting into anything else, you must identify how much you are willing to spend. An entry-level luxury watch should be priced anywhere between £1500 - £5000, and in this price range, there are plenty of horological options available to you that will not only hold their value with time, but will prove to be reliable, durable timepieces.
When it comes to watches, one of the primary drivers of cost is the materials used, which is something to consider when planning your budget. Most luxury watches are made from steel, but not all materials are the same. There are different grades of steel that are of higher quality than others, so a bit of research into the various materials that go into the construction of a luxury timepiece could help you discover a price range you are comfortable with.
Which Brand Should I Go For?
Before we list off some of the classic brands, we have a general rule of thumb for you to follow: try your best to avoid ‘fashion’ watches. These watches often slip into the entry-level luxury price range, and oftentimes, these are far from the best quality timepieces you can get in this bracket. The Gucci watch in the shop window may be enticing, but at £2500, you can easily find a timepiece with some real heritage that will last far longer.
Some brands to consider for a quality timepiece in the £1.5k - £5k price range are Bremont, Seiko, Oris, Tudor, and TAG Heuer amongst many others. Granted, there will be watches that far surpass this price range when you look into the variety of pieces offered by each one of these brands, but each one should have a timepiece geared towards a series of different budgets. Each one of the brands listed have a different style/design, so take your time and don’t rush the process of finding a watch that is truly ‘You’.
What About The Movement?
Along with construction and material quality, the movement type/quality is often responsible for the recognisable price difference that exists between some watches. Movements are not made equal. A good movement will seamlessly keep time, whereas a badly made one will not. A bad movement will cause your watch to lose time, sometimes up to several minutes a day.
Luxury timepieces will feature complicated mechanical movements that represent hundreds of years of refinement and heritage. Swiss, Japanese, and German movement makers tend to have the best reputations, whether that’s for automatic or quartz movements. For this reason, many watchmakers, regardless of their region, end up co-designing watch movements with Swiss partners.
A case in point being Bremont. Bremont focuses purely on beautifully made mechanical movements, and the BWC/01 has been part-developed and designed in Britain with their Swiss partners. A number of the key constituent movement parts are also manufactured at the company’s workshops in the UK, which is the first step for Bremont towards manufacturing movements in their entirety on these shores.
These timepieces are known to keep time very well, and all are guaranteed to within -4 to +6 seconds per day. For this reason, Bremont is one of the few watch makers to offer a 3-year warranty on every timepiece, as well as producing some of the finest quality watches in its price point. So, if you’re still shopping for a contender to launch you into the world of horological appreciation, consider a Bremont as a starting point!