Since they were initially introduced in the 16th century, wristwatches have developed into a necessary item and even a fashion statement for both men and women. Over the years, many talented watchmakers have produced clocks that may easily be regarded as works of art, changing their design, features, and mechanisms significantly.
Today, we’ll look at the top watch companies in the world right now, with one-off pieces costing anywhere from a few thousand dollars to well over a million dollars. These brands only produce timepieces for a select group of individuals who can afford the finest materials, incredibly delicate movements, and premium gemstones.
You might wish to make a further investment in a watch strap once you’ve found the ideal timepiece for you. You can locate a watch strap that matches your style in a variety of shops, but make sure it is at least made of premium leather.
Now let’s take a closer look at the top 10 watch brands in terms of price.
10. Jaeger LeCoultre
Swiss watchmaker Jaeger LeCoultre, established in 1833 by Antoine LeCoultre, has made numerous advancements that have transformed the timekeeping sector over the years. For instance, they developed the most complex wristwatch, the smallest calibre ever made, and the first keyless watch ever made, which relied on a tiny push-piece to switch a lever from one function to another.
The prices of Jaeger LeCoultre’s beautiful timepieces range from roughly $4,000 to well over one million dollars for elaborate watches like the Hybris Mechanica a Grande Sonnerie, which goes for $1,474,070. This amazing watch can play the complete Big Ben chiming cycle and has at least 1,300 pieces.
With a history dating back to 1775 in Paris, Breguet, another Swiss company, takes pride in being one of the oldest watchmakers still in operation. The firm relocated to Vallee de Joux, Switzerland, in 1976, and among their innovations are the Abraham-Louis Breguet tourbillon and the first wristwatch ever created in 1810.
Their clocks currently cost between $6,000 to $400,000, but they may charge considerably more for unique creations. The Breguet No. 160 grand complication, popularly known as Marie-Antoinette, is a watch that Breguet even constructed for King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. It has every watch function that was available at the time and is housed in a gold case with sapphires within to reduce friction. Unfortunately, the queen did not live to see the watch finished; it is now on display at the Jerusalem-based L.A. Mayer Institute for Islamic Art.
This business was founded by Jehan-Jacques Blancpain in 1735, and all of their products are crafted by a single watchmaker, making them extremely rare and expensive. According to their tagline, they have never created quartz watches and will never make quartz watches. The costs range from $6,000 to $500,000.
Rolex produces almost 2,000 watches every day, but Blancpain only produces thirty; as a result, obtaining one is far more challenging. One of their most stunning watches is also one of the most intricate timepieces ever created; it is only made in a small batch of 30 pieces, with one more piece being added every year.
7. Louis Moinet
The Louis Moinet workshop, founded by the creator of the chronograph in 1806, produced some outstanding clocks for famous people and international leaders like Thomas Jefferson, Alexander the First, King George IV of England, and Napoleon Bonaparte.
His initial timepieces can be viewed in museums like the Louvre, Chateau de Versailles, or Palazzo Pitti. Louis Moinet’s watches were regarded as genuine works of art. His company’s standard watches range in price from $8,000 to $26,000.
6. Audemars Piguet
Jules-Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet, two friends who sought to create sophisticated watch movements that would quickly rule the globe, created the Swiss luxury watch company Audemars Piguet in 1875.
Currently, one of the most well-known watch companies in the world is Audemars Piguet, and every part of their watches is still created using conventional methods. Their timepieces range in price from $8,000 to $250,000.
In the Swiss village of La Cote-aux-Fees, the watchmakers from Piaget also worked as jewellers. At first, they made watch mechanisms; watches weren’t made until the 20th century.
These days, their prices range from $10,000 to $210,000, and some of their timepieces, like the $152,000 Altiplano Caliber 1200D, which is dripping with stones and has an internal framework covered in diamonds, may even be considered trendy jewellery.
4. Roger Dubuis
With only 20 years in the business since it was founded by Carlos Dias and Roger Dubuis, this Swiss watchmaker is far more inexperienced than its rivals, yet its exceptional level of craftsmanship makes its watches highly regarded. A Roger Dubuis watch could cost anywhere from $11,000 to $156,000, but some superb specimens go for much more than that.
A good example is the Millesime Double Flying Tourbillon, which was only made in 88 pieces. This fascinating clock, which costs $263,000 and was designed by Roger Dubuis himself, is one of the most precise timepieces ever produced.
Excalibur Quatuor, which weighs half as much as titanium but is four times as durable, is another entry from the business on the list of million-dollar watches. This incredible timepiece costs about $1,125,000 and contains an RD101 movement that makes it highly accurate.
3. Patek Philippe
Since its founding in 1851 in Geneva, Patek Philippe has provided timepieces to Queen Victoria and is often regarded as the most illustrious watchmaker in the world. Their clocks typically range in price from $10,000 to $780,000 and include some of the most intricate movements.
The Henry Graves Supercomplication, which was sold in 1999 for $11 million and then again in 2014 for $24 million, is one of the priciest watches ever created by Patek Philippe.
2. Vacheron Constantin
Along with Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet, Vacheron Constantin is one of the three best traditional watch brands and the oldest watchmaker with a continuous history. They created the world’s first engine-turned dials as well as timepieces for Harry Truman, the Duke of Windsor, Pope Pius XI, and Napoleon Bonaparte.
In order to have adequate room for all of their exhibitions, they produced a limited edition of seven pieces called Tour de I’lle for their 250th anniversary. These watches cost $1,538,160 and included a second-time zone, a perpetual calendar, and a sunset time indication, among many other features that make them one of the most intricate watches ever created. The minimum price required to purchase a watch from Vacheron Constantin is $11,000.
1. A. Lange & Sohne
The best high-end watches are probably produced in Germany, more especially in Glashutte, which is close to Dresden. A. Lange & Sohne has a lengthy history of producing high-quality pocket watches when it was founded in 1845. The business went out of business in 1948, but it was revived in 1990, and its first wristwatches were released in 1994.
The watches from A. Lange combine flawless mechanical movements with gold or platinum casings for a distinctive appearance that is frequently referred to be “Teutonic” in its austerity. The least expensive timepieces start at $14,000 and can cost as much as $580,000 and more.
A grand sonnerie and a petit sonnerie, as well as a minute repeater, a monopusher chronograph with split seconds, a perpetual calendar, and a moon phase display, were all included in the $2,497,000 Grand Complication watch, which was unveiled at SIHH 2013.