Why is Geneva the Center of the Luxury Watch World?

While there are certainly other nations like Germany, Japan, England, and even the US that have their own watchmaking centers, today Switzerland is still the country most associated with fine watchmaking. And similarly, although watchmaking is spread out across little villages in the tiny nation (in fact, my family is from the watchmaking village of St. Imier, home to Longines and other watch brands) the city of Geneva lays claim to being the heart of the Swiss watch industry. But why is Geneva the center of the luxury watch world today? Let’s find out.

 

A Brief History of Swiss Watchmaking

Paradoxical as it may seem, the origins of luxury watchmaking in Switzerland was in fact partly due to austerity measures of the Protestant Reformation. John Calvin spearheaded the movement in Switzerland and in 1541 he banned the wearing, selling, and making of jewelry in Geneva, deeming it too frivolous and opulent. As a result, the jewelers of the city were left with no viable trade. Around the same time, French Protestants, the Huguenots, fled to Geneva to escape persecution in France from the Catholic majority. With the migration, the French refugees brought along their creative skills and watchmaking know-how to the Swiss city. Thankfully, John Calvin did allow for the production of watches in Geneva as he deemed them as practical instruments and not flashy objects of wealth like jewelry.

Therefore, the out-of-work Swiss jewelers and the newly arrived French watchmakers shared their knowledge and savoir-faire, which laid the groundwork for Geneva to establish itself as a burgeoning European watchmaking city. Over the course of the next few centuries, the industry spread from the city to the rural areas of Switzerland because these areas offered a willing labor pool. Farmers had plenty of free time in the winter and consequently many of them were hired by Genevan watch companies to build watch components.

While Switzerland as a nation has been continuously committed to the watchmaking industry, this is not to say that it has been an easy path. In the 1970s and 1980s, the Quartz Crisis threatened to topple the entire mechanical timepiece market with the advent of cheap quartz-powered timepieces from Asia. Only the strongest watch brands survived and the early 1990s saw a phenomenal comeback of the mechanical luxury watch, which continued to boom until only just recently. Today, it’s no secret that the smartwatch category presents yet another threat to the luxury watch market. Just how Switzerland will tackle this challenge remains to be seen.

 

Geneva is Home to Leading Luxury Watch Brand HQs and Top Horology Events

Although many Swiss watch brand manufactures are scattered throughout the country—Audemars Piguet in Le Brassus, Omega in Biel/Bienne, Breitling in Grenchen, and IWC in Schaffhausen—Geneva is still home to the headquarters and production facilities of the two titans of Swiss watchmaking; Rolex and Patek Philippe.

Rolex HQ in Geneva (Image: Rolex)

Along with manufacturing, Geneva is the best city in the world to shop for a luxury watch. Take a stroll down Rue du Rhône and surrounding streets in Geneva and you’ll be met with the most incredible watch boutiques from just about all the prestigious watch brands from Switzerland and beyond. Plus, the renowned Patek Philippe museum is of course also in Geneva.

Basel may host the largest watch and jewelry fair in the industry, but Geneva is not far behind with the annual Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie Genève (SIHH) event taking place every January. Top brands such as Cartier, Audemars Piguet, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Vacheron Constantin, Richard Mille, and others are there to showcase their novelties for the year.

GPHG is the most prestigious awards ceremony in the watch industry (Image: GPHG)

Geneva is also where the annual Grand Prix D’Horlogerie de Genève event takes place—the most prestigious awards in watchmaking today.

Moreover, it’s not just new watches that come to Geneva. This picturesque city by the lake is also where the world’s best auction houses hold high-profile auction events a few times a year, selling rare, vintage, and extraordinary watches to keen international collectors.

 

What is the Geneva Seal?

 Based on the official full coat of arms of Geneva, the presence of the Geneva Seal (Poinçon de Genève in French) in watch movements certifies that the movement was indeed made in the City or Canton of Geneva. There is also a set of strict quality regulations to pass before a watch can be engraved with the seal.

The Geneva Seal on a Vacheron Constantin watch (Image: Vacheron Constantin)

Perhaps the most famous watch house to proudly feature the Geneva Seal on most of their timepieces is Vacheron Constantin. Patek Philippe also used the Geneva Seal up until 2009, when the famous manufacture implemented its own “Patek Philippe Seal” process.

 

As you can see, Switzerland, and in particular Geneva, has cultivated a culture that emphasizes the importance of fine watchmaking. From watchmaking schools to state-of-the-art production facilities to corporate offices to lavish boutiques to glamorous events, Geneva has rightfully earned its place as the center of the watch world.

Mother’s Day Gift Guide: 5 Luxury Watches Perfect for Mom

May is here, which means Mother’s Day is not far away. This year, Mother’s Day will be on Sunday, May 13, 2018, and if you haven’t found the perfect gift yet, fear not, we are here to help! If you want to make this Mother’s Day really special, then it’s time to treat mom to an exceptional gift—a luxury watch. But don’t worry; since we sell topnotch pre-owned luxury watches in fantastic condition, you’ll save plenty of money while still giving a gift that matters.

Plus, we even offer simple payment plans to make buying that special Mother’s Day gift even easier. Here are five of our favorite women’s fine timepieces that will make mom squeal with joy when she unwraps her gift. After all, she raised you, so she definitely deserves it.

 

Omega Constellation Watch for Mother’s Day

Show mom what a star she is by gifting her a classic Omega Constellation ladies’ timepiece. Not only does this watch flaunt the unmistakable Constellation silhouette with the Roman numeral bezel on the case and integrated bracelet, but it’s also crafted in both stainless steel and 18k yellow gold. This means mom can wear it every day without having to worry about matching it to her jewelry or other accessories since it’ll go with almost anything.

Mother's Day Gift Omega Constellation Watch

 

What’s more, mom will be in good company with the likes of Cindy Crawford and Nicole Kidman also wearing Omega watches.

 

Cartier Panthere Watch for Mother’s Day

You know who loves Cartier watches? Almost everybody! Royalty like Kate Middleton and soon-to-be royal Meghan Markle wear their Cartier watches daily, and former first ladies Michelle Obama and Jackie Kennedy-Onassis wore theirs all the time during their husbands’ presidencies. Hollywood actresses like Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, Katie Holmes, and Catherine Zeta-Jones wear Cartier watches too.

Mother's Day Gift Cartier Panthere Watch

So you really can’t go wrong with giving mom a stunning Cartier Panthere for Mother’s Day. Also combining steel and yellow gold, this chic Cartier watch, with its distinct brick-lay bracelet and square bezel, is an absolute classic in the brand’s lineup.

 

Chopard Happy Sport Watch for Mother’s Day

What’s better than a luxury watch for Mother’s Day? A luxury watch with diamonds! Bring mom some fantastic sparkle with this gorgeous Chopard Happy Sport watch with five floating diamonds dancing on the dial.

Mother's Day Gift Chopard Happy Sport Diamond Watch

While the diamonds on the dial give a little extra shine, the watch itself is made from understated stainless steel, which makes this a great daily watch. The curvy link bracelet is both lovely to look at and comfortable to wear and the blue cabochon-cut sapphires on the winding crown and lugs of the watch add a beautiful touch.

 

Baume & Mercier Van Cleef & Arpels Watch for Mother’s Day  

If mom is into vintage, then don’t miss this charming vintage beauty that channels a decidedly Audrey Hepburn vibe. This Baume & Mercier Van Cleef & Arpels timepiece dons a sophisticated rectangular case plated in 18k yellow gold that houses a crisp while dial dotted with traditional Roman numerals.

Mother's Day Gift Baume & Mercier Van Cleef Arpels

Paired with an elegant black strap, this little number is as sophisticated today as it was when it made its debut in the 1960s. Like wine, a fine watch gets better with age.

 

Rolex Lady-Datejust President Watch for Mother’s Day 

What does the queen of the family deserve on Mother’s Day? The luxury watch nicknamed the President of course! Other queens that wear a Rolex President include Jennifer Lopez, Olivia Palermo, Jenifer Aniston, and the late Grace Kelly.

Mother's Day Gift Gold Rolex Datejust President

This sumptuous Rolex Lady-Datejust is crafted entirely in 18k yellow gold and is fitted with the semi-circular link bracelet dubbed the President band. And the lavishness doesn’t stop there—there are also ten gleaming diamond hour markers on the champagne dial to remind mom of how brilliant she is.

 

You have less than two weeks to find that perfect gift for mom, so don’t delay and browse our stunning selection of high-end watches for ladies. We’ll even deliver it straight to mom’s doorstep with free shipping along with a complimentary one-year warranty.

The best part of giving mom a luxury watch this Mother’s Day? Every time she looks at her new timepiece, she’ll be thankful that she raised such a thoughtful and generous child.

 

 

Watch Hunt: The Superheroes of Luxury Watches

With Superhero Day around the corner (April 28, for the uninitiated), this got us thinking about which timepieces we would consider as superheroes of luxury watches. And we’re not referring to nicknames like the Rolex Batman or the Rolex Hulk, but rather, the watches that are so revered that they champion above the rest. Like superheroes, these timepieces are instantly recognizable thanks to a signature style, have intriguing histories, are often mononymous, and have more than a few tricks up their sleeves. After plenty of back and forth, here are the models that we consider as the superheroes of luxury watches.

 

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak

Bursting onto the scene in 1972, the big, bold, and brash Audemars Piguet Royal Oak was vastly different from the refined and demure gold timepieces that elegant men wore every day. Yes, there were other steel watches from top watch brands during this era, but this was not created to be a tool watch like, let’s say the Rolex Submariner, but as a daily luxury sports watch.

 

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak (Image: Audemars Piguet)
The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak (Image: Audemars Piguet)

 

Audemars Piguet enlisted the help of famed designer Gerald Genta to design a groundbreaking watch that would—like a superhero—save the day since the manufacture was facing bankruptcy at the hands of the Quartz Crisis. Genta’s Royal Oak design featured a 39m steel case, an octagonal bezel with exposed screws, and a glorious integrated steel bracelet. Over four decades later, the Royal Oak is still one of the most coveted watches with a host of different versions available.

 

Breitling Navitimer

Making its debut in 1952 as a spinoff of the Chronomat watch, the Breitling Navitimer quickly became a favorite chronograph of professional pilots due to its slide rule that allowed the computation of complex navigational calculations while in flight. The large size and technical look of the Navitimer—a name that aptly combines the words “navigation” and “timer”—is now enjoyed by an audience that goes far beyond the pilot population.

 

Super Hero of Luxury Watches Breitling Navitimer
The Breitling Navitimer

 

Like most popular luxury watches today, the Breitling Navitimer aviation watch is offered in a range of materials, sizes, configurations, and price points. Regardless of the version, the Navi’s unique aesthetics is always on-point and well deserving of its iconic status.

 

Cartier Santos

While the Cartier Santos is probably not the first watch you think about in the realm of pilot watches, it was indeed the first pilot watch ever created. Made especially for aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont by Louis Cartier in 1904, this square Cartier timepiece was developed to be worn on the wrist for easy accessibility during flights—a much more practical and safer solution than digging for a pocket watch.

 

The Cartier Santos
The Cartier Santos

 

Although the model is well over a century old, the Cartier Santos has retained its signature style characterized by a square case and bezel, Roman numeral dial, sword-shaped hands, and a blue stone on the winding crown. Just this year, Cartier presented a brand new Santos collection available in an array of materials and featuring an innovative strap changing system.

 

Omega Speedmaster

As the first watch to reach the moon, the Omega Speedmaster Professional has certainly earned its superhero standing! When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin made history in 1969 as the first men to make it to the moon, the Omega Speedmaster went along for the ride. In fact, Aldrin had his Omega Speedmaster strapped around his astronaut suit when he took his lunar steps. Since then, the Omega Speedmaster, a.k.a. the Moonwatch, partook in all of the six lunar landings and other space exploration missions.

 

The Omega Speedmaster
The Omega Speedmaster (Image: Omega)

 

Omega has continuously offered new iterations of the famous Speedmaster Moonwatch chronograph, many including key elements like a stainless steel construction, a black dial and black tachymeter bezel combo, and a hand-wound movement.

 

Panerai Luminor

The Panerai Luminor began its life as a stealth superhero watch as it wasn’t available to the public. Exclusively made for the Italian Royal Navy (and a few other countries’ militaries too) Panerai dive watches were military grade instruments built to accompany the Navy’s frogmen unit during their missions. It was only in the 1990s that these massive timepieces were finally sold to civilians and they caught the eye of Hollywood action stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone. The brand took off and legions of Panerai fans, known as Paneristis, followed.

 

The Panerai Luminor

 

Compared to the Radiomir, the Panerai Luminor is the more robust model from the brand’s lineup, donning its customary oversized bridge-like winding crown protector, highly luminescent dial, and large cushion-shaped case.

 

Patek Philippe Nautilus

Following in the footsteps of the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, Patek Philippe also released a Genta-designed steel luxury sports watch in 1976. This time, the legendary watch designer took inspiration from circular ship windows and created the now-famous porthole-shaped case of the Nautilus watch, pairing it with a steel integrated bracelet and a grooved dial with two center hands and a date window.

 

Patek Philippe Nautilus (Image: Patek Philippe)
The Patek Philippe Nautilus (Image: Patek Philippe)

 

Since the inaugural steel version, Patek Philippe has reissued their flagship sports watch in a variety of precious materials, as well as with an array of watch complications. However, the steel Nautilus watches with simple time and date functionality remain as the most popular—and hardest-to-find—editions.

 

Rolex Submariner

A superhero watch that has the biggest fan base by far, the Rolex Submariner is in a league of its own. While the Submariner was explicitly built as a tool watch for divers in the 1950s, today it is the ultimate status sports watch. Despite its specs and heritage, you’ll most likely find the Submariner on the wrist of desk divers over actual scuba divers.

 

The Rolex Submariner

 

While Rolex has greatly enhanced the Submariner over the last 65 years, the famous dive watch has retained its distinct style. Whether in steel or gold, in black, blue, or green, with or without a date window, vintage or modern, the Rolex Submariner is immediately identifiable due to its unidirectional rotating bezel, Mercedes-style hands, round lume plots, Oyster bracelet, and iconic crown logo.

 

From the Sub to the Navi to the Speedy and all the other top timepieces we listed, these particular models have endured decades of fleeting trends and remain as living legends in the luxury watch world.

Watch of the Month: New vs. Older Omega Seamaster Diver 300M

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M collection, so to commemorate the occasion Omega refreshed their popular dive watch collection. Let’s find out what the new changes are and how they compare to the preceding versions of the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M. Plus, in honor of Earth Day (Sunday, April 22 in case you forgot) we also take a quick look at Omega’s other dive watch lineup, the Planet Ocean.

 

What’s New with the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Design?

 

As always, Omega like to go big so they released no less than 14 new Seamaster Diver 300M watches at Baselworld 2018! These new models come in a range of material choices and color options ranging from full steel to two-tone steel and gold (yellow or rose) with familiar blue, black, and silver shades.

New Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (Image: Omega)
New Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (Image: Omega)

While the new Seamaster Diver 300M watches retain the overall recognizable style of the longstanding Omega dive watch, there are a few notable changes. First, the size of the case has increased slightly from 41mm to 42mm. Omega seems to be bucking the trend of scaling down case sizes and proudly going bigger this time around.

New Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (Image: Omega)
New Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (Image: Omega)

Another modification found on the new Seamaster Diver 300M is the use of ceramic for the bezel, replacing the once-favorite aluminum material. This isn’t much of a surprise as ceramic has become a darling in the luxury watch space. Cherished for its striking looks and robustness—especially resistant to scratching and fading—it makes perfect sense that ceramic is becoming the go-to material for high-end sports watches. As a dive watch, the ceramic bezels on the new Diver 300M models only rotate in one direction to prevent divers from overestimating their immersion times.

Ceramic continues on to the dials of the new Seamaster Diver 300M and fans will be delighted that Omega revived the wave pattern on the face of the watch. The signature pattern was a distinct feature of this collection for a long time, such as on this Seamaster Diver 300M 2531.80 circa 2007, but Omega did away with it for a few years. But it’s back, and even more prominent now thanks to the use of ceramic. Moreover, Omega kept the characteristic skeletonized center hands but they have been reshaped ever so slightly.

 

The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M’s New Movement

Master Chronometer Calibre 8800 (Image: Omega)
Master Chronometer Calibre 8800 (Image: Omega)

For the first time in the Seamaster Diver 300M’s 25-year history, Omega has equipped the new models with their new generation METAS-certified Master Chronometer 8800 automatic movement, ramping up the watches’ precision, accuracy, and durability. Omega’s modern self-winding anti-magnetic caliber—visible from the exhibition sapphire caseback—offers 55 hours of power reserve and operates at a frequency rate of 25,200 beats per hour (3.5 Hz).

As a result of the new caliber, the date window has moved from the traditional 3 o’clock position as found on the older Omega Seamaster Diver 300M 2532.2000 to a new position at 6 o’clock. Of course, as the model’s name suggests, the Seamaster Diver 300M retains its water resistance to 300 meters. Also continuing on the watch is the customary helium escape valve protruding from the case at the 10 o’clock position. The valve permits built-up gases to release from the watch during decompression periods, thus avoiding the crystal to pop off from pressure.

All in all, Omega did not drastically change the Seamaster Diver 300M but rather, added a few modern enhancements that’ll surely be welcomed by many.

 

What’s the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Watch?

 

One of the newer collections from Omega, the Seamaster Plane Ocean made its debut in 2005, positioned as the Seamaster Diver 300M’s bigger, bolder, and more robust brother. Take for example the Seamaster Planet Ocean 2200.51.00, flaunting a hefty 45.5mm case! Boasting double the water resistance of the Seamaster Diver 300M, the 600-meter rated Seamaster Planet Ocean is built for professional divers who love to explore underwater worlds.

Emphasizing Omega’s commitment to marine sustainability, the watch brand joined forces with the GoodPlanet Foundation in 2011 to raise awareness of the conditions of our oceans and to promote feasible ways to preserve their wellbeing. Omega has continuously produced special edition Goodplanet watches, including Planet Ocean versions along with Aqua Terra models, where a portion of the proceeds from these watches is donated to the foundation.

While Omega may be famous for having created chronographs for astronauts to take on space explorations, the Swiss watchmaker is clearly as dedicated to crafting impeccable dive watches for marine exploration too. And this is why we have chosen the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (and its buffer brother the Planet Ocean) as our Watch(es) of the Month.

Watch Talk: How to Sell or Trade a Luxury Watch

Spring is in full swing, which for many means some spring-cleaning tasks ahead. But aside from cleaning out the closets, garage, and the dark space under your bed, may we suggest clearing out the clutter from your watch box too. There may just be some luxury watches stashed away in there that haven’t seen the light of day in years (decades?) that you should probably deal with. The good news is, that while you may not want to wear your old luxury watches—perhaps they’re too small, too big, too outdated, or simply not your style—as the old saying goes, one’s man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Okay “trash” is way too harsh when speaking of fine timepieces, but you get our drift. Turn your clutter into cash or credit with these three steps on how to sell or trade a luxury watch.

1. Gather Your Used Watches and Do Some Research

Preowned Luxury Watches

 

Like with most things in life, preparation is everything. So, first things first, go through your drawers, closets, your safe, and watch box and gather any luxury watches that you haven’t worn in a while. Bonus points if you can locate the watches’ original paperwork and packaging. Take a long hard look at what’s in front of you and be realistic—will you ever wear these again? Are you just holding on to them for nostalgic reasons or perhaps you feel bad getting rid of them? Think about it this way, watches that gather dust in a dark space does nobody any good! Let them go to a better home, where they will be appreciated and worn! Plus, it’s not like you’ll throwing out these valuable items—sell them or trade them in for watches you’ll actually enjoy wearing.

Do some basic research on the pre-owned watches you have. There are plenty of resources out there from watch forums to watch blogs to online watch magazines to auction results to get a better picture of the history, current value, and existing demand of your used watches. Also, and this is very important, have realistic expectations. While in your mind these may be priceless items worth a bucket load of cash, the reality is often a much different story. Just because you found one example of a watch similar to yours that sold for five-figures, does not mean that yours will be valued the same. There are plenty of factors that play into the perceived value of a pre-owned luxury watch including provenance, condition, and most importantly, demand.

2. Take Clear Pictures and Prepare Detailed Descriptions

 Preowned Luxury Watches

Once you have your watches ready and have a ballpark figure or what you’re expecting to get in return for selling your watch, it’s time to take some pictures. Take clear higher resolution pictures so as many details of the watch can be seen in the photographs. Also, take pictures from all angles of the watch—front, back, sides, bracelet/strap, buckle/clasp, box/papers, and so on. The goal here is to give a clear and honest look at the watch in its current state. No use trying to hide any flaws and/or damage to the watch because these will eventually be uncovered.

Once you’re happy with the pictures, head to the Phigora Sell Page to fill out the quotation request form. Similar to the pictures, be as detailed and honest in your accompanying descriptions as possible. Also indicate if you want to sell or trade a luxury watch and one of our team members will get back to you in less than 24 hours.

3. Find a Watch to Fall in Love With

Preowned Luxury Watches

Reward yourself for a job well done by browsing our collection of pre-owned watches to find one that you love. Consider your budget (taking into account the credit that your old watch will get you), lifestyle, and taste and pick a watch that you’ll be happy to wear often. Do you gravitate more towards dive watches, pilot watches, dress watches, or understated time-only watches? What about metals—do you wear stainless steel or gold more?

It’s always a good idea to look at popular brands like Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Cartier, Omega, and Breitling. These types of luxury watches are better at retaining their values, which is something to think about if you’ll sell your watch again in the future. And for even more savings, don’t miss our Spring Sale happening right now for a limited time.

Although “fun” isn’t the first thing you think of when it comes to spring cleaning, selling or trading your old watch for a new one certainly is. Out with the old and in with the new, we say!

Watch Talk: How to Shop for a Pre-Owned Luxury Watch

Buying a pre-owned watch is a great way to get your hands on an affordable luxury watch, yet it can be a daunting task filled with uncertainty if you’re unsure of what you’re doing. We want to make sure we equip you with as much information as possible and so we developed a quick how to on how to shop for a pre-owned luxury watch with confidence.

 

1. Research Watch Brands, Models, and Styles

You have a wide variety of luxury watch brands, styles, and models to choose from. High-end watch brands are rich with history, which makes for some interesting timepieces.

Generally speaking, a watch manufacture is one that designs and produces most of their own timepiece components and mostly constructs their own mechanical watch movements in-house (there are always exceptions). Some leading luxury watch manufactures include Rolex, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, Jaeger-LeCoultre, and A. Lange & Söhne. Other luxury watchmakers, such as Cartier, Breitling, and Omega, sometimes manufacture their own movements and sometimes take standard “ebauche” movements and modify them. Most watch brands also offer more affordable battery-operated quartz models along with their more expensive mechanical watches. The type of watch movement is something to take into account when buying a pre-owned luxury watch.

In terms of style, there’s an abundance of options to consider. It’s standard for most high-end watchmakers to offer pieces in robust stainless steel and fine 18k gold, while other companies focus on other materials like titanium, carbon fiber, and ceramic. The size of wristwatches has progressively increased over its history — what once was considered the average size for a men’s watch, 26mm – 32mm, is diminutive compared to today’s average size of 40mm and beyond. However, there’s been a notable trend these days back to smaller men’s watches hovering around the 36mm – 39mm mark.

Research some top watch brands to see if their heritage, styles, and models resonate with you.

 

2. Taste and Lifestyle Fit

Many watches offer specific functions, for instance, diver’s watches have high levels of water resistance, pilot’s watches have multiple time zones, chronograph watches measure elapses events, and fine classical watches boast traditional complications such as calendars and indicate moonphase. When contemplating buying a preowned luxury watch, consider your lifestyle and what type of watch would best suit your needs.

If this is your first pre-owned watch purchase, a versatile and affordable luxury watch may be the right choice for you. Some great starter luxury watches for men include the Rolex Oyster Perpetual, the Breitling Colt, and the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M. For women, the Cartier Tank Française and the Rolex Lady-Datejust are classic entry-level luxury watch choices.

Check out our beginner’s guide to starting a luxury watch collection to learn more.

 

3. Select a Brand That Will Retain Value

If the possibility of reselling your pre-owned luxury watch in the future is an important factor, then selecting a brand that tends to maintain its value, such as Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, and Cartier, is something to keep in mind.

When purchasing a second-hand luxury watch for the first time, look for watches that historically retain their design characteristics without too many drastic changes for easier reselling later. For instance, the Rolex Submariner, Breitling Chronomat, and Omega Speedmaster Professional, have all kept their iconic looks virtually untouched for decades.

Stainless steel luxury watches have always been a popular choice with their demand steadily increasing, thus, may be easier to resell than other, more expensive, materials.

 

4. Buy From a Reputable Source

There are a number of advantages of buying a pre-owned luxury watch over a brand new one, including better prices, availability of discontinued models, and a wider range of options. However, in this case, it’s very important to “buy the seller” to avoid getting cheated.

Be cautious of companies that promise cheap luxury watches without the necessary measures to protect the buyer from fraudulent sellers. Aside from the price, examine other factors like condition, proof of authenticity, reputation, and after-sales service. Opt for reputable sources like Phigora that offer pre-owned watches for sale within a safe and secure online marketplace.

If you’re in the market to buy a luxury watch online, then take advantage of Phigora’s valuable features to protect the buyer. Not only are all of our watches backed by an authenticity guarantee, they also come with a one-year warranty. Plus, we also have an easy return policy should you not be satisfied with your purchase.

Consider the above buyer’s guide tips, browse through our catalog of pre-owned watches for sale, and buy with confidence.

Ready to shop a preowned watch? Shop our Spring Sale from now until April:

https://www.phigora.com/spring-sale.html

Spring Trends: Top Luxury Watches to Wear this Season

As the weather warms up, it’s natural for us to trade in heavy coats and bulky boots for lighter jackets and brighter shoes. However, there’s another wardrobe staple that could benefit from switching as the seasons change—the wristwatch. From Rolex to Breitling and Cartier to Omega, here are some of our favorite luxury watches for both him and her to wear for spring.

 

Rolex Explorer II 16570

While the white dial version of the Rolex Explorer 16570 is nicknamed the “Polar,” its crisp face is perfect for the spring season. This particular version is an older generation of the Explorer II—produced from 1989 until 2011—so it sports a slightly smaller 40mm case rather than the current Explorer II’s 42mm case.

Along with the white dial, there’s the full stainless steel case, bezel, and bracelet, which all come together in an appealing monochromatic sporty style. The steel bezel is engraved with large numerals to be used in conjunction with the red 24-hour hand on the dial to indicate a second time zone. Coupled with the two time zones, there’s also the familiar date window at 3 o’clock on the dial, magnified by the Cyclops lens on the sapphire crystal. Depending on the production date, the Explorer ref. 16750 runs on either the Caliber 3185 or the Caliber 3186—both automatic movements, of course.

Pair your spring outfits with the Explorer II 16570 “Polar” for some much-needed freshness.

Breitling Avenger II Seawolf A17331

Say goodbye to the dark days of winter and welcome spring by sporting some sunshine on your wrist with the yellow dial Breitling Avenger II Seawolf ref. A17331. The bright watch face is encased in a large 45mm stainless steel case and for additional flair, the dial also includes flashes of red accents.

Furthermore, the Breitling Avenger II Seawolf A17331 also features a date window at 3 o’clock for added practicality and plenty of luminescent details for clear legibility in low light. Plus, as a super-diver model, the watch’s impressive water resistance to 3,000 meters (10,000 feet) can certainly withstand some springtime showers! The automatic Caliber Breitling 17 offers a 40-hour power reserve and like all Breitling watches, it is COSC-certified.

A robust dive watch with plenty of presence, step into spring with the vibrant yellow Breitling Avenger II Seawolf in hand.

Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2255.80.00

The wave pattern on the electric blue dial of the Omega Seamaster 300M Chronometer 2255.80.00 signals plenty of sunny days ahead. If you’ve booked a well-deserved spring break with some plans for some fun in the sun, this is the ideal companion to have on your wrist.

 

A solid Omega dive watch, the Seamaster 300M Chronometer has all the functionality you’d expect from a watch built to explore marine environments. From its stainless steel construction to its 300-meter (1,000 feet) water resistance to its helium escape valve to its unidirectional rotating dive bezel to its highly luminescent dial, this is the Omega you want for water-based adventures. Moreover, the automatic Omega 1120 Caliber provides a practical 44-hour of power reserve.

Cartier Ballon Bleu W69010Z4

Although the Ballon Bleu is one of Cartier’s newest watch collections, it’s already established itself as a modern classic. This particular Cartier Ballon Bleu ref. W69010Z4 is just what a ladies’ springtime wardrobe needs. Seductively curvy thanks to its round convex shape and ideally sized at 28mm, this is one watch that’s easy to wear. Even Kate Middleton wears one!

 

This modern Cartier ladies’ watch flaunts all the traditional design hallmarks of the French Maison, including the black Roman numerals on the fresh white dial, the bright blue stone on the winding crown, and the blue sword-shaped hands. Furthermore, the quartz caliber means that the watch will keep running on or off the wrist.

 

The Ballon Bleu ref. W69010Z4’s stainless steel case and bracelet is a top choice for a contemporary everyday luxury ladies’ watch.

 

 

Omega Constellation Mini 1465.71.00

It may be discreet in size at just 22.5mm but the Omega Constellation Mini ref. 1465.71.00 shines bright with its diamond-set bezel. With its integrated bracelet and four griffes (claws) on the case, the Omega Constellation watch is immediately recognizable.

The clean white dial offers just the right amount of space for the center hands and faceted hour markers. A time-only watch that runs on a quartz caliber, the Omega Constellation Mini has everything you need and nothing you don’t.

Part precious jewelry and part wristwatch, the Omega Constellation Mini is a delicious piece of arm candy to sport during spring days.

 

As you refresh your wardrobe for the season, don’t forget your watch box. Browse our collection of fine timepieces to find the right watch to wear this spring and beyond.

 

Watch Hunt: Top 5 Breitling Watches to Own Right Now

A watch brand that needs no introduction, Breitling produces some of the best aviation-inspired chronograph watches out there. Founded in 1884, Breitling has grown from a company that produced aviation instruments for aircrafts and professional grade watches for pilots to one of the leading luxury watch manufactures today.

 

Known for their sporty, technical, and masculine timepieces, Swiss made Breitling watches offer superb design backed by mechanical mastery. A favorite among pilots, military personnel, and watch enthusiasts, the appeal of a Breitling watch is broad. Plus, Breitling watches are often found on the wrist of celebrities. John Travolta, Brad Pitt, Usher, David Beckham, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jerry Seinfield, Justin Timberlake, Idris Elba, and Gordon Ramsay are just a few of the celebs that we’ve spotted wearing a Breitling watch.

 

Today we take a closer look at some of our favorite men’s models from the brand. Join us as we delve into the top 5 Breitling watches to own right now.

 

1. Breitling Cockpit Chrono A13358

 

Produced in the early 2000s, the Breitling Cockpit Chrono model bridges the gap between a technical chronograph watch and an everyday elegant sports watch. With a restrained 39mm stainless steel case paired with a tasteful brown leather strap, this Breitling Cockpit Chrono ref. A13358 watch can easily transition from relaxed office wear to active weekend gear.

 

The engine under the hood of the Cockpit Chrono ref. A13358 is the Breitling Caliber 13 automatic movement with 42 hours of power reserve. This mechanism furnishes the watch with time, date, and chronograph functionality, all beautifully laid out on the balanced dial. There’s the trio of subdials at 6, 9, and 12 o’clock that sits alongside silver Roman numerals and a date window at 3 o’clock.

 

The bronze hue of the dial matches the brown strap handsomely, while the oversized onion-style winding crown and four rider tabs on the bezel are famous Breitling design hallmarks.

 

2. Breitling Chronomat A13050.1

 

As Breitling’s flagship model, the Chronomat is, in fact, one of the brand’s top-selling and longest-running collections. This particular version, the Breitling Chronomat ref. A13050.1, dates to the late 1990s and features everything you would want from a high-end chronograph.

The 40mm stainless steel case is topped with a steel unidirectional rotating bezel marked to 60 units via the characteristic rider tabs. What sets this particular Chronomat apart from other versions is its brushed steel finish rather than the more common polished steel finish. Breitling dubbed this look “stealth mode.”

 

The sleek black dial sets the stage for the three registers positioned at 6/9/12 o’clock, along with the date window at 3 o’clock. There are also the oversized Arabic numerals and tachymeter scale running around the dial, completing the dynamic face of this Breitling chronograph.

 

To emphasize the sporty appeal of the Breitling Chronomat ref. A13050.1, the watch is outfitted with a steel link bracelet. Powering the model is the reliable COSC-certified Caliber 13 automatic movement.

 

3. Breitling Chrono Avenger E13360

 

A robust instrument, the Breitling Chrono Avenger ref. E13360 was built to withstand extreme environments and extensive use. While the Chrono Avenger sports a generous 44mm case, the watch is still lightweight thanks to the use of titanium for both the case and the bracelet.

The black dial includes the familiar chronograph layout with the trio of registers at 6, 9, and 12 o’clock, in addition to the date at 3 o’clock. The dial also offers plenty of lume to ensure optimal visibility in low light. Driving this heavy-duty Breitling chronograph is the ever-dependable Caliber 13 automatic movement.

 

If you’re looking for a luxurious yet tough chronograph, then the Breitling Chrono Avenger is right up your alley.

 

4. Breitling SuperOcean Heritage II A13320

 

Along with pilot watches, Breitling also builds fantastic dive watches. Take for instance the Breitling SuperOcean Heritage II ref. A13320 diver’s watch. This stainless steel model boasts a hefty 46mm case furnished with a blue unidirectional diver’s bezel. As its name suggests, the SuperOcean Heritage II is a subtle tribute to vintage Breitling dive watches from the late 1950s.

While the watch may draw design inspiration from Breitling watches of yesteryear—such as the retro steel mesh bracelet similar to the original design—this expansive chronograph is built with modern expectations in mind. From its 200-meter water resistance to its chronometer certified Caliber 13 automatic movement to its scratch-resistant sapphire crystal protecting the dial, the SuperOcean Heritage II ref. A13320 is perfectly at home on the modern man’s wrist.

 

The color combination on this particular Breitling SuperOcean Heritage II ref. A13320 is especially appealing with the white dial, steel construction, and blue bezel.

 

5. Breitling Navitimer AB0127

 

No top five Breitling watches list would be complete without the famous Navitimer watch! Breitling debuted the Navitimer watch in 1952, equipped with a circular aviation slide rule to allow pilots to compute complex calculations while in flight. Since then, the Breitling Navitimer has remained a favorite chronograph watch among professional pilots and the general population. Characterized by a highly technical dial, the Navitimer is one of Breitling’s most recognizable timepieces.

The Breitling Navitimer ref. AB0127 is a modern iteration of the legendary pilot’s chronograph. It dons a 46mm stainless steel case, black dial, and contrasting silver registers. Unlike the other chronograph models listed above, the subdials on the Navitimer are positioned in the 3, 6, and 9 o’clock layout. There’s also a date window discreetly tucked away in between 4 and 5 o’clock.

 

At the heart of the Navitimer ref. AB0127 chronograph is the in-house Breitling 01 Manufacture automatic chronograph movement with an impressive 70 hours of power reserve Underlining the sporty elegance of the Navitimer watch is the classic black leather strap.

 

Iconic in both design and technical skill, the Navitimer is most certainly one of the best Breitling watches to own right now.

 

 

 

Whether you’re on the hunt for a vintage inspired chronograph, a sleek modern chronograph, or a legendary chronograph flaunting plenty of history, Breitling is the master of luxury chronograph watches.

March Watch of the Month: Rolex Submariner No-Date 14060

There are your standard popular luxury watches and then there’s the Rolex Submariner—a watch that is truly in a league of its own. Born in the 1950s as a tool watch for scuba divers to take with them underwater, the Rolex Submariner has long since graduated to the ultimate status sports watch.

While there are endless options to choose from within the Rolex Submariner collection, from gold to steel to two-tone to bejeweled to ceramic models, we love the simplicity of the stainless steel Rolex Submariner No-Date watch. Join us as we highlight our March Watch of the Month, the classic Rolex Submariner No-Date ref. 14060.

 

The Design of the Rolex Submariner No-Date 14060

Introduced in the 1990s and no longer in production, the stainless steel Rolex Submariner ref. 14060 is one of the last classically styled Submariner watches that sport an aluminum bezel rather than the new style Cerachrom ceramic bezel. As a dive watch, that bezel, marked to 60 units, is, of course, unidirectional rather than bidirectional. This is to prevent divers from overestimating how long they’ve been in the water for. If the watch gets knocked, the bezel will only turn in one direction to add more minutes rather than reduce them.

Furthermore, to withstand underwater exploration, the Rolex Submariner ref. 14060 is water resistant to 300 meters (1,000 feet) thanks to the Oyster case construction, screw-down winding crown, and fluted caseback. Like all modern Rolex Submariner, the Sub ref. 14060 has a 40mm case.

Housed within the case is the familiar black Submariner dial with lume plots and luminescent Mercedes-style hands. These details allow for clear legibility even in the murkiest of waters. Another thing you’ll notice on the Submariner ref. 14060 is the lack of a date window, hence its Submariner No-Date label.

Finally, rounding out the look of the Submariner No-Date ref. 14060 is its matching stainless steel Oyster bracelet. This particular model has hollow center and end links on the bracelet rather than solid ones, which makes it more lightweight than its modern counterparts. Again, keeping with dive watch functionality, there’s an extension mechanism in the clasp that allows to wearer to extend the bracelet to fit it over a dive suit.

 

The Appeal of the Rolex Submariner No-Date 14060

Fans of the Submariner No Date ref. 14060 love the watch for its fantastic symmetric. The absence of the ubiquitous dial window at 3 o’clock and accompanying Cyclops lens on the crystal allows for a beautifully balanced and uncluttered dial. Remember, when the Rolex Submariner first made its debut in 1953, it did not have a date window. So a no-date Submariner is more like the original Sub than ones with a date window.

Moreover, the Submariner ref. 14060 is a bridge between vintage Submariners and the ultra-modern ones. It boasts contemporary features such as a sapphire crystal and a 300-meter water resistance, yet it maintains the more traditional case shape and smaller details on the dial compared to the new “super case” and “maxi dial” of the latest Submariner watches.

Plus, if you look at the sides of the case, you’ll notice lug holes—something that today’s Rolex watches don’t have. This means that it’s easy to switch out the steel Oyster bracelet for different straps. The Submariner ref. 14060 looks great on a leather strap or NATO-style nylon strap. One awesome sports watch, endless ways to wear it.

Another big attraction of the Submariner No-Date 14060 is its price point. Coming in as one of the most affordable Submariner watches, the ref. 14060 can be picked up for less than $6,000 in the secondary market.

 

Submariner No-Date 14060 vs. 14060M vs. 14060M COSC

As with all things Rolex, it’s all about the small details. When Rolex first introduced the ref. 14060 in 1990, it came equipped with the Caliber 3000 automatic movement. Then in 1999, Rolex furnished the no date Submariner with the Caliber 3135 automatic movement, thus the 14060M was born where “M” stands for “modified.” Yet, the style of the watch remained the same.

However, around 2007, the no date Submariner took a drastic design change when Rolex sought COSC-approval for the watch. The Submariner ref. 14060M COSC is notably different from its two older siblings since it includes the “SUPERLATIVE CHRONOMETER OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED” text on the dial. So the Submariner No Date went from a two-liner Submariner to a four-liner Submariner. The Sub ref. 14060M COSC was discontinued to make way for the new Submariner ref. 114060 in 2012.

 

The Last Classic Submariner

If like us you appreciate traditional Submariner design, then you’ll love the Submariner ref. 14060. With its minimal dial, lightweight bracelet, lug holes, and aluminum bezel, this is the last generation of the classic Submariner.

Watch Care: 5 Tips to Extend the Life of Your Rolex

It’s no secret that owning a Rolex watch is not an inexpensive endeavor. And once you’ve spent the thousands of dollars it costs to own one, you’ll naturally want to take good care of it so you can enjoy it for years.

On the one hand, these are not delicate timepieces (for the most part) to be hidden away in a safe. Rolex watches are built to dive deep into oceans, climb to the highest mountaintops, speed through the fastest races, and fly across continents. So it’s safe to say they can withstand the daily knocks of desk diving, shuttling the kids to school, and vacationing in the Caribbean. However, a little extra care will keep your Rolex watch in tiptop shape. If properly tended to, your future grandkid can happily wear it once you’re long gone. Read on for our recommendations on how to extend the life of your Rolex watch.

 

1. Wearing Your Rolex

While Rolex watches are famous for their durability and robustness it’s inevitable that your Rolex will gain scratches and dings during wear. In fact, some many Rolex enthusiasts are proud of these scratches since they illustrate a life well lived!

However, damage to the bezel and sapphire crystal will cost you should you need to replace them. Older Rolex watches come with acrylic crystals protecting the dial and older Rolex sports models have aluminum bezels. Conversely, newer Rolex watches have sapphire crystals and the sports watches typically have ceramic bezels. Note that on Rolex watches, sapphire and ceramic is much more expensive to replace than acrylic and aluminum.

It’s vital to ensure that the winding crown is screwed down into the case when you wear your Rolex. This will help keep water, dust, and dirt out of your watch. And don’t forget about the screw-down pushers on the Rolex Daytona too.

Since the majority of Rolex watches run on automatic movements, wearing it literally brings your Rolex watch to life! As long as you wear your Rolex, it’ll continue to run. If you do however store it away for a while, you’ll need to hand-wind by turning your (unscrewed) winding crown a few times it to get the movement going again.

 

2. Storing Your Rolex

When you’re not wearing your Rolex, it’s a good idea to store it properly. If your Rolex came with a box, that’s a great place to put it away. Alternatively, a watch box with multiple watches works well too. Just make sure that they’re not piled on top of each other because this will most certainly cause some unwanted scratches!

When stashed away, keep your Rolex out of direct sunlight and away from moisture. Think cool dark place—like a safe. Also, it’s better to have your Rolex stored far from electronics to avoid exposing the movement to magnetic fields. You may also consider investing in a watch winder to keep your Rolex watch running even when it’s off your wrist.

 

3. Cleaning Your Rolex

Depending on how often you wear your Rolex watch, keep it fresh with regular cleaning. For instance, if you wear it every day, we would recommend a weekly wash. Not only will built-up dirt and grime dull the look of your Rolex, it can also cause bracelet stretching over time.

To clean a full metal Rolex watch, simply wash it using warm water and a mild soap (Dr. Bonner’s Castile Soap is a great choice). You can also use a soft brush to clean harder-to-reach areas, particularly around the lugs and in between bracelet links. Once you’ve washed off all the soap, dry your Rolex watch with a soft cloth and you’re ready to go.

Remember these are water-resistant watches so water is completely fine—but again, make sure the winding crown is screwed in properly!

 

4. Up Keeping your Rolex

If the scratches on your Rolex bracelet, case, and crystal are bothering you and it’s still a while until your next servicing, there are some ways to remove scratches at home.

While there are some Rolex wearers who are adamantly against at-home techniques for restoring the look of a Rolex watch, others are completely fine with using store-bought products and simple methods. There are plenty of products including polishing pastes, clothes, and solutions out there to get the job done at home—just find the one that suits you best if you’re up for it.

 

5. Servicing Your Rolex

Every couple of years, it’s advisable to send your Rolex in for a service. Some people prefer having an official Rolex service center do the job while others have a relationship with an independent watchmaker they trust. When deciding on which route to take, consider the costs, value, length of time, and dependability of each party.

A full service means that your Rolex will be cleaned, polished, and buffed to look as new as possible. Damaged parts—such as the crystal, bezel, crown, or dial—may be replaced if needed. On the inside, the movement will be removed, disassembled, checked for performance, lubricated for friction, and parts will be replaced as necessary. Lastly, the gasket will be replaced and the watch will also be pressure proofed for water resistance.

There is a caveat to this however. For vintage Rolex models, collectors typically like to have as many original parts as possible on their timepiece, in addition to unpolished condition. Rolex will replace parts, machine polish, and bring the watch up to modern standards as much as possible when servicing. So if this is not what you want for your Rolex, then do not send it in for servicing.

Did you know that Phigora provides watch repair and maintenance services? Email customerservice@phigora.com to inquire and learn more about this new service!

If you notice any condensation on your Rolex dial underneath the crystal, have it looked at by a certified watchmaker as soon as possible. Water may have gotten into your watch and without immediate attention, it may cause expensive damage to your Rolex.

With a little bit of care, consideration, and maintenance, your Rolex watch will be your trusty companion for a long time to come. But never be scared to wear your watch for fear of damaging it or get too bent out of shape about little scratches—sport your lived-in Rolex watch with pride!