When Is A Watch Seen As A Luxury Watch?


We all know the phrase “luxury watch”, it is often used when someone suggests you’re wearing a luxury timepiece. But what makes a watch a luxury watch?

A luxury watch is handmade with high-end materials. They tend to be very durable and the complex in-house made movements can tell the time for centuries. The luxury watches come at premium prices pushing the luxurious feel. Consumers buy more luxury watches as their wealth increases.

Some key things make a watch a luxury watch. Read on to find out what these things are.

Rolex Milgauss (116400GV-0002)

What Is The Definition Of A Luxury Watch?

When searching for the definition of a luxury watch in the Cambridge dictionary there is no such definition. Luxury is the meaning of something expensive that gives you great comfort or a lot of pleasure but cannot be done/bought often. And well a watch is a timepiece that helps you keep track of time. There are some aspects that we all can agree on that define a watch as luxurious.

The first thing that comes up when considering a luxury watch is the brand behind it. A brand like Rolex, Omega, Patek Philippe or Audemars Piguet all have a heritage and history which is often linked to that luxury feel. A new brand might use premium materials and charge that but without a name, people won’t necessarily think it’s a luxury brand.

After all, when you buy a luxury brand and pay that premium you want people to recognize your purchase. Everyone knows what a Rolex watch looks like and, all people know Omega from the James Bond movies.

The second thing that people link to a luxury watch is the price tag it has. Any luxury watch brand their watches start at a couple thousand dollars. An entry-level watch from Rolex will set you back 5 to 6 grand. While the more expensive models can go up in the tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Next, we think of quality when thinking about luxury. You won’t buy something luxurious that will break down in a couple of months, a luxury item needs to last you for years. With a luxury watch that’s the same story, Rolex watches can tell the time for more than a century if taken care of. That’s what I call good quality.

At last, a luxury watch is a watch that shows a feeling of prosperity, some accomplishment or status. You feel the luxury on your wrist.

Omega Speedmaster Professional (310.30.42.50.01.002)

People Have A Different Definition For A Luxury Watch

Like with all that’s not verbally expressed in a dictionary people all have a different interpretation when hearing the words “luxury watch”. Something that one person considers worthless may be considered valuable by someone else.

While someone stated that a luxury watch is anything over $3.500,- another declared that it’s a watch he doesn’t need but with leftover money has to have. So while for many a watch on itself is already a luxury for other people it really starts at a price point.

Here are three answers to the question “tell me the definition of a luxury watch”.

For me they are all a “luxury”…All analog watches are an extravagance…and it’s disposable income that should be going into them. If I don’t need it, but have to have it… It’s a luxury.

For me, it is a watch over $3.5K

A luxury watch is any watch that takes extended time to make and is complicated to produce in the same sense.

So for everyone, it’s something else. And because of this, it’s hard to say what a luxury watch is.

Someone will call watches from well-known brands like Rolex or Omega luxury, while others will base their opinion on the price of the watch.

The Quality Of A Luxury Watch

To understand the price tag of a luxury watch you need to understand the materials and craftsmanship that goes into these timepieces. Only a brand name or good feeling cannot sell four to six-figure watches.

First, let’s talk about materials, yes you can make a watch out of rubber and call it a day. This doesn’t happen at the luxury watchmakers. They make the choice of the finest and most durable materials there are on earth, think of gold, platinum, titanium or stainless steel for the case. Of course, a gold watch case is more expensive to produce than a stainless steel one.

For the watch, crystal luxury makers always pick one crystal. Sapphire is more expensive than plexiglass but is also way more scratch resistant. This again adds up to the price but also to the durability.

Second the craftsmanship, luxury watchmakers make their movements all by themselves. This means more hours are spent creating a timepiece. While cheaper watchmakers can place premade movements, our high-end watchmakers do this all by hand. This can’t be done by anyone, the people that make and place the movement inside a Rolex or Omega are highly trained watchmakers with years of experience.

The high-end materials and specified craftsmanship drive up the price of a luxury watch. Nevertheless, you’re getting a high-quality and durable watch.

Omega Speedmaster Automatic (3510.50.00)

How Much Does A Luxury Watch Cost?

As we just talked about a luxury watch can cost you a lot, but what is the exact number you can expect when purchasing a luxury timepiece?

While some luxury watches can start at $1.000,- others come in at $5000,- or even $10.000,-. While the price can go as high as you are willing to pay here are some examples of luxury brands and their watches

The cheapest watches are 36mm, this is the size both men and women can wear.

BrandCheapest WatchMost Expensive Watch
RolexOyster Perpetual – $5.500Cosmograph Daytona – $78.650
TudorBlack Bay 36 – $2.700Black Bay Fifty-Eight 18K – $16.750
OmegaSpeedmaster 38 – $5.000Speedmaster Professional Gold – $38.800
BreitlingEndurance Pro – $3.300Premier B21 Chronograph Tourbillon – $53.560
Patek PhilippeCalatrava – $20.900Advanced Research 5750 – $593.010
Audemars PiguetRoyal Oak – $20.230Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar – $113.815
Richard MilleRM 07-01 – $76.930RM 056 Jean Todt – $2.250.475

So there you have it. When going to an entry-level luxury watchmaker like Tudor you still need to have some money saved up for your watch. Tho it is an obtainable amount, I can understand not everyone wished to spend it on a watch.

Real exclusive watchmakers like Patek Philippe price their watches in the six figures. Richard Mille takes the top with a watch that costs just over $2 million.

You can start getting luxury watches for between two and six thousand dollars. You can also pay as much as you desire.

Rolex DateJust (126300)

Is It Worth Spending Money On A Luxury Watch?

You are probably asking the question. Is a luxury watch worth it?

A luxury watch is only worth it if you think it’s worth it. Don’t think you will get a great feeling when purchasing something that is just expensive or wears a luxury name. Buy a luxury watch when you have a reason for purchasing it, like a promotion, graduation any other milestone in your life.

Maybe you just love watches and really want to obtain that one piece. Well, then a luxury watch is worth it for you. Right now you might now be able to afford that Patek Phillipe but you can start with an obtainable luxury watch and grind your way up there.

If you’re not sure about a purchase, I suggest not making it. When we hesitate about something in life it’s always good not to do it straight away. A couple nights of sleep considering the purchase again would be a good idea.

Lastly, I want to say, never borrow money to buy a luxury watch. No matter how badly you want it, or how good the deal is. It is not your money and going into debt for a watch is not a good idea.

Jakub

The guy who loves to chat about watches.

All watch related