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What are the most valuable watches?
Your watch is more than a way to tell the time. It’s a statement. A focus. A piece that says something about who you are, that tells your story. It’s an investment.
You can be forgiven for thinking that you need to spend a lot of money to find a striking piece that does all this while seeing you through countless occasions - and all while still holding its value. But that doesn’t have to be the case.
There are so many investment-worthy watches that you can purchase without the eye-watering price tag - affordable watches that look great and perform beautifully while holding their value. And you don’t have to be an expert to find them.
Watches that increase in value
Watches made by big-name Swiss manufacturers like Rolex, TAG Heuer, Omega, Patek Philippe and Breitling are often cited as the most collectable watches - and those that are most likely to go up in value.
It must be said though: not all the watches made by these brands will increase in value (at least, not at much as some models). Those most likely to include:
- Rolex Submariner
- Rolex Daytona
- Patek Philippe Calatrava
- Omega Speedmaster
- Breitling Navitemer
- TAG Heuer Carrea
So even within the luxury watch market, it seems that some watches are more valuable than others.
But why are Swiss watches still so covetable? It’s partly because Switzerland is still the watchmaking capital of the world, and Swiss watches are renowned for their quality, precision and desirability. Many of these brands cost thousands of pounds - even second-hand - so are often snapped up by serious watch enthusiasts with serious money to spend. And many models are particularly collectable, which adds to their price - especially if:
- They’ve been produced in limited numbers
- They’re older models that are no longer being manufactured
- They’re particularly rare
- They’re vintage
- They’re a model that’s in particular demand
These timepieces are so expensive partly because their value increases over time. Why? Because they have recognised names that are synonymous with quality and a strong watchmaking tradition; have covetable, reliable mechanisms; and are often made using precious metals.
Which watches hold their value?
Luxury watches aren’t the only timepieces on the market. There are plenty of affordable watches to invest in too.
Designer watches - such as those made by Police, Ben Sherman and Timberland - are popular pieces that have all the glamour and sophistication of their luxury counterparts, but without the large price tag.
And your watch doesn’t have to have to carry a designer name: there are plenty of models made by well-renowned watchmakers like Sekonda, U-Boat and Accurist that are investment-worthy too.
Here are some of our favourite watches, whether you’re looking for a tip top timepiece that ticks all the style boxes, searching for something that oozes quality, or want a watch with a pin-sharp mechanism that won’t let you down.
Manufactured by a household name, this luxurious watch epitomises the brand’s reputation for style and quality. With subtle shimmer and an elegant face, it’s perfect for any occasion.
This watch makes a bold statement with its black face, gold features, and simple chronograph. Using Swiss components, it has a reliable mechanism that keeps on ticking.
Police is synonymous with sophisticated styles, and this watch is no exception. With rose gold dials and details in a deep black face, this watch makes a real statement.
Ben Sherman has been an iconic British brand since the 1960s, and this watch brings their classic vintage style up to date with stainless steel features for a hard-wearing, modern look.
Add a splash of colour with this stand-out watch. The red dial and gold-look hands and hours turn this watch into a talking point, while the rubber strap embodies Timberland’s heritage.
Undeniably U-Boat, this chunky watch makes a serious statement. A style that’s instantly recognisable, this iconic, unforgettable watch is decorated with 39 black diamonds.
Effortlessly fashionable, these timeless timepieces are supremely stylish. But that’s not all. Because they’re well-made by reputable brands, they’ll maintain their value, and they make great heirlooms. And that makes them worth investing in.
But regardless of how much your watch costs, or what name it carries, ultimately, you buy with your heart. So the first question you should ask yourself is: do I like this watch?
If it’s something you really can’t imagine not owning, wearing and looking at everyday - and it’s within your budget - then go for it. And love wearing it.
Of course, value doesn’t have to equal price. Many cherished items are so treasured because of their sentimental value and the tale they tell - and that’s something that’s truly priceless.
Your watch doesn’t have to follow the latest trend. If you enjoy wearing it, that’s all that matters. And so long as it has a good mechanism and is well looked after - including replacing its battery when it needs it - it will keep time perfectly, and outlast many other brands.
Making an emotional investment is often more powerful than a purely financial one, and that connection to something is a strong driving force behind so many purchases. So why should your watch be any different?