The 10 best dress watches to buy right now
Our edit of the perfect timepieces for the most important occasions in a man's life
Longevity, class, sophistication. All words that one would associated with the finer things in life, but for a dress watch these are mere prerequisites.
The finest accessory a gentleman can own, it will see him through all of the big occasions in his life – wedding, keynote speech, interviews, second wedding – and most likely the generation after him as well.
Made to perfectly match your best Savile Row bespoke suit and finest pair of patented leather shoes it completes any black tie outfit. But with so many variations and pretenders on the market how best to know which one is worth your money?
To save you the headache, and leave more time to prep for all-important after-dinner speech, we’ve curated our current favourites. Scroll down to find the perfect dress watch for you.
The Classic One: Breguet Tourbillon Extra-plat 5367
Breguet have been at the top of the watch world for centuries, from making “the Queen” for Marie Antoinette to this masterpiece. With off-set markers on a “Grand Feu” enamel dial to give space for the incredible tourbillon window.
Like with any dress watch the best features are the small details and not flashy chronographs or chunky diamonds. Subtly smart. Not screaming, but quietly confident, as every gentleman should be.
Breguet Tourbillon Extra-plat 5367
The Game Changer: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Small
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso is a style icon in its own right. With a silhouette that is unmistakable on the wrist and a sleek sophisticated design that is guaranteed to go perfect with any dinner jacket.
Also a conversation starter for those who are in the know and notice the classic on your wrist across the dinner table. A fact to drop: founded in 1883 Jaeger-LeCoultre hold 400 unique patents.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Small
The Complicated One: Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle day-date and power reserve
There are some Grandes Maisons who have always produced perfection and always will. This iteration of Vacheron Constantin’s Traditionnelle collection marries the subtlety of 18-karat pink gold case and a deep black dial.
This subtle exterior hides some serious horological clout underneath with Vacheron Constantin’s in-house movement displaying a day-date function as well as a power reserve. Just so you can keep track of Friday night dinner parties that stretch into the weekend.
Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle day-date and power reserve
The Sophisticated Steel One: Chopard L.U.C XPS 1860 Edition
A dress watch should never be too flashy, nor should it be dull. This perfect medium has been stuck by Chopard with the L.U.C XPS 1860 in stainless steel. While some might argue that a dress watch should be cast in a precious metal Chopard here have turned steel into something as precious as white gold. Giving a luxe feel to a normally everyday material. Nothing better to slip under the cuff of your dress shirt.
Chopard L.U.C XPS 1860 Edition
The Elegant One: Blancpain Grande Date Jour Rerograde
Blancpain truly show off their versatility as a watch company with this timepiece. Famous for their near indestructible dive watches, here they have created a infinitely elegant dress watch with a discrete day indicator and an extremely clear large date window. Perfectly crafted elegance.
Blancpain Grande Date Jour Rerograde
The Out Of This World One: Rolex Cellin Moonphase
This model can often – and wrongly – be overlooked in the Rolex collection, with much flashier designs taking all of the attention. Thankfully, the Cellini got the limelight it deserves when Barack Obama was spotted wearing one in his official Presidential portrait. Clearly favoured by the most stylish leader of the free world ever for its understated lines and incredible moon-phase.
Rolex Cellin Moonphase
The Diamond Expert One: Graff Slim 43mm
Graff are renowned the world over for their fine diamond jewellery. From creating unique pieces with their yellow diamonds to produce stunning engagement rings. But that was the extent of Graff’s expertise, think again. This Swiss made timepiece will match perfectly with your crisp cut suit and the brilliant diamond on your fiance’s finger. With the faceted bezel and sword shaped hands this is a marque piece from Graff.
Graff Slim 43mm
The Beautifully Brushed Dial One: Laurent Ferrier Galet Micro-Rotor “Montre-Ecole”
The silver satin brushed dial on this is the ultimate subtle detail that adds a luxe feel to the face. Pleasant to the eye with differing finishes on the small-seconds display at 6 o’clock makes this silver dialed Laurent Ferrier a must have for your next dinner party. If you’re feeling like an subtle upgrade you can always request this model in platinum as well. A move we would definitely recommend.
Laurent Ferrier Galet Micro-Rotor “Montre-Ecole”
The Unique One: Parmigiani Fleurier Toric
The knurled bezel on this seminal dress watch from Parmigiani Fleurier is the true stand out design feature. Done using a technique that makes each model unique, adding an element of exclusivity. Something that Parmigiani Fleurier have made a name for themselves throughout their storied Swiss history.
Parmigiani Fleurier Toric
The Iconic One: Patek Philippe Goledn Ellipse 5738R
This is the dress watch your grandfather had. With the design hardly changing in 50 years the Golden Ellipse is the classic evening wear accessory. Built to a golden ratio with an ultra thin movement from Patek Philippe this watch may be a new incarnation of this classic line for 2018 but you can bank on these watches being around for many generations to come.
Patek Philippe Goledn Ellipse 5738R
Looking for something a bit more worldly? Check out our select of the best GMT watches on the market…