You just spent four grand on that Mont Blanc Timewalker Voyager UTC. Isn’t that cute, but compared to these watches, you may as well have picked up a Swatch watch at your local shopping mall.
These are timepieces of such decadent indulgence that one could argue they are entirely superfluous. Extremely wealthy collectors are the target market here, the rest of us are left to look longingly and imagine the possibilities in a fit of envious desire.
So enjoy your Mont Blanc, because it’s very likely you won’t even get close enough to see what time it is on these five of the world’s most expensive watches in existence.
Let us go in order, from cheapest to extravagant to “you’re kidding, right?”
Jaeger-LeCoultre Gyrotourbillon 1 – $400,000
With a name like that, it just sounds expensive. But we’re just scratching the surface here. The watch has plenty of complications (additional features such as a chronograph or some other accoutrements that go beyond merely telling the time), but what makes it so pricey?
It has a tourbillon, which is, very simply, a wrist-mounted anti-gravity device. They’re designed to keep gravity from messing with the accuracy of your watch. Yeah. That can happen apparently.
Patek Philippe Ref 5016P – $720,000
This is one of the most complicated watch the folks at Patek have ever produced.
This is a moon-phase, perpetual calendar, retrograde timepiece that can be adjusted via an exclusive app from the company.
It will run continuously, if adjusted properly and maintained correctly, until well into the next century.
But then if you’re spending what it would cost to buy a house in Dallas, Texas, you’re going to make sure it’s well-maintained, wouldn’t you?
Vacheron Constantin Tour de I’Ile – $1,550,000
We’ve broken seven figures now, with this gorgeous timepiece from Vacheron Constantin. Why so expensive?
Well, for starters, this watch has two faces, one located on the front, the other on the back of the cabinet. Sounds unusual, who needs a face on the back of their watch and more importantly, what purpose does that serve?
VC needed all that room for its myriad of displays, like a perpetual calendar, a second time zone, sunset time indicator, and much more. Only seven of these were made, so it’s also an extremely limited edition.
Chopard 201 – Carat Watch – $25,000,000
No, that’s not a typo, this Chopard sold for eight figures back in 2000. It’s a super-gaudy jewel-encrusted monstrosity that contains a laundry list of flawless and fancy diamonds, ranging in a variety of sizes. A laundry list, you ask. So many does that actually mean? 874 rare diamonds is the total number. As for the watch itself, it just tells the time…and that’s if you can see the dial through all the bright, shiny gems.
Brueget Grande Complication Marie Antoinette – $30,000,000
A watch 45 years in the making. It was originally commissioned for Marie Antoinette but she never lived long enough to see its completion. To behold this timepiece is to marvel at the technology of its time, as the face is entirely transparent, revealing all of the mechanics within.
The inner workings are encased in gold and Brueget added sapphire to minimize friction inside the watch. It went missing in the late 1900’s, unseen again until 2007, and it became a Holy Grail to avid, and very rich, collectors.
It was THE watch that everyone wanted to own, and thus it was valued at 30 mill. So where is it now? The L.A. Mayer Institute for Islamic Art in Jerusalem, Israel.