When it comes to horology, nobody even comes close to Swiss manufacturing, heritage or design. Every major name you can think of in the industry will have some if not all of its manufacturing in the Swiss market. So large is the industry even fashion brands who ever choose to go into horology will seek out the finest watch components and manufacturing at Basel or Geneva. Buying your first Swiss luxury watch is an investment that will last you a lifetime.
We have put together a list of the top 10 Swiss watches we believe you should be looking to purchase.
A great price point for a swiss movement. Tag Heuer remains a very much sought after brand. We have selected the formula 1 due to its robust design aesthetic and iconic red face. The detailing will ensure you get noticed for all the right reasons as this is one of the absolute classics from Tag. Although it is now owned by LVMH the brand continues to innovate and invest in the company to produce interesting and fun movements.
Many people tend to ignore Longines when it comes to horology but we at Chronoexpert believe it is a fabulous brand. More discreet than most in both styling and detailing. This retrograde men’s automatic has all the trappings of a great Swiss movement. A leather strap instantly makes it a more formal piece and the blue oxidized hands stand out against the fantastic silver face. This is an automatic movement made to Swiss standards and a chronograph also. Lots of details packed into what is quite a reasonably priced watch.
Another company under the LVMH brand. It was one of the only companies that focused on making very slim movements. This one, in particular, is a stand out for them. Coming in at just under 10mm it is no wonder they call it the ultra thin. Sitting perfectly flat against the skin it is a perfect watch from Zenith. Its subtle star detailing and elegant black on black details are a fabulous testament to the Swiss watch maker. I still believe that my favorite detail is the discreet star placed on all watches at the 12 o’clock mark.
We have included some great names on the list and we couldn’t quite leave out one from Oris. We personally love this brand. It has all the great qualities of Swiss manufacturing but with a younger design aesthetic. Simpler, easier to look after and most importantly great robust timepieces. The one we have picked is a more professional style composed of rubber, titanium and sapphire crystal. With a large 49mm case it is quite a statement and one of the cooler models from Oris and one people won’t expect you to get for your first timepiece. This one does suit a more rugged outdoor type personality however so keep in mind its aesthetics.
This iconic brand remains forever unique with its interactive timepieces. We picked it due to its rectangular face detail in comparison to a sea of round faces available. Jaeger pronounced “Jhay Jhay” makes this swiss french name synonymous with heritage and horology. It is very much a brand for the in the know crowd and perfectly suited to a more discreet gentleman. The Reverso is their most iconic watch and a perfect one to start with as your first swiss watch.
Vacheron Constantin is a watch brand that is hard to come by, however, one must not underestimate its name and importance in the watch industry. Proudly highlighting its Geneva heritage these are watches that personify Swiss design and aesthetic. The less is more approach makes ever baton stand clean and neat in their compositions. This Calatrava has not a single detail on it that would complicate its aesthetic. Beautifully composed and restrained style is the motto here. It is again one of the more discreet brands and will win brownie points from all watch lovers who spot it on your wrist.
Last week we did an entire series of watches on Breitling and from that list, we still maintain that this particular one is our favorite. It is younger in the models that Breitling offer but it more than makes up for it with its combination of Titanium and robust design. We love the weight of this watch on your wrist and that cool gray case looks fantastic with everything you wear. What more would you expect from the masters of the sky? The champions of industry leading watch movements that is Breitling…
Rolex Milgauss Men’s Steel
We picked one of the most stylish watches that Rolex has ever produced. So although this may be your first Swiss timepiece, you don’t want it to look like that to the rest of world. This is a watch for seasoned Rolex collectors and admirers so whilst everybody will be clamoring for the most obvious Datejusts and Submariners, you should feel confident in knowing that not many people will have the iconic green glass that was designed exclusively by Rolex for the Milgauss. Effortless cool with its green black and orange detailing.
When you think of Rolex, you have to think of Omega next. Both of these powerhouses have been competing in the last few decades to be known as the top watchmaker in the industry. Omega owned by Swatch Group poured countless billions over the past decade to ramp up their image and marketing in a competitive industry. The result was watch upon watch of innovative and cool details. This Seamaster is one of those stand out models. Seen in countless films where danger is the theme and government espionage is the threat, no real action man could believe he is one without supporting one of these on his wrists.
Although we are pushing the boat out with this one we absolutely believe it should be on the list. Considering it is still under the $10k mark it is a great investment in a watch and in yourself. Completely stand out from the crowd by wearing probably the most respected watch brand in the industry. Nobody around you will be wearing a Patek and in an ocean of Omega and Rolex, this is for the true watch enthusiasts and aesthetes amongst us. Put it this way, once you get a Patek, you will rarely have to buy another watch again.