A Guide To Buying Your First Luxury Watch

A Guide To Buying Your First Luxury Watch

Buying a luxury watch can potentially become an overwhelming experience since there are several aspects you would want to consider before making the actual purchase. Depends on you transforming the experience into one that will help you appreciate watches as pieces of art and investment. You can even learn something new about yourself in the process

Getting your first luxury watch means acquiring a timeless piece, as Patek Philippe iconic slogan claims: “You never actually own a Patek Philippe; you merely look after it for the next generation.” Buying smart requires educating yourself in several aspects. Whether you intend to buy a watch as an investment or just a piece that suits your style and budget, you need some information before proceeding. 

Since you’ll be wearing that watch for an extended period of your life, it will become intrinsically associated with you. Luxury watches have the ability to talk about the owner and send a clear message on how you want to be perceived by others; it communicates individual taste, aesthetic appeal, and social status. 

1. Research: 

You should read blogs and magazines, follow iconic brands on social media, and visit watch specialists face to face, so they can provide answers to your questions. 

Get information about well-known brands- Rolex, Omega, Patek Philippe, or Jaeger-LeCoultre- history, and heritage. Study their watches and prices based on their uniqueness, scarcity, and quality. For example, for some people, Rolex might  not be exclusive enough and this doesn’t make it an appealing brand from whom to buy their first watch. However, if you choose Rolex as your first watch, it’s hard to go wrong- whether it is a GMT-Master II, Submariner, or an Explorer, you’ll be doing a very good purchase.

2. Aesthetics and functionality:

Style: Casual, racing, pilot, dive, or dress watches

Spec: Round, square, tonneau, or cushion

Watch Dial Type: Digital or analog

Strap Material: Leather, rubber, fabric, or metal.

Watch Movement: Quartz, mechanical, or automatic?

Watch Features: Sound alarm system or stopwatch, moon phases, dates, etc.

Water Resistance

Weight: Be careful of a too heavy watch since it could be uncomfortable for everyday use and more suitable for special occasions and formal events. 

Bezel: Fixed, unidirectional, bidirectional, and internal.

3. Budget:

The price point you choose depends on your budget and whether you plan to purchase more luxury watches down the line. Whether you are looking for new or vintage the minimum budget for an entry level luxury watch should be around $ 5,000.

4. New or Vintage:

Vintage: The main advantage of vintage watches is that you can get better value for money. Most of the time, you can find rare, unique, and cooler items that will need more maintenance than a new watch, however. Despite having a comprehensive offer to choose from, there are potential pitfalls that can occur if you don’t know who to buy from. If you intend to buy your first luxury watch, as long as you can, you should go for a new one and leave the vintage market for a second watch, after you have gained additional knowledge. 

 New: You will learn that brands like Omega, Rolex, or Breitling base their distribution and marketing strategy on scarcity since it increases their appeal to customers- as these are looking for an aspirational and exclusive group of people to become part of. Remember that brands control supply, and the watch you are trying to buy could be hard to find or not available at a specific location. Some models are made available only to customers that have acquired and maintained others models of the brand. Since some of these scarce new watches could be sold at a premium immediately after the acquisition the brands want to make sure you would not engage in a rapid turnover.

5. Where to buy: 

 We would always recommend buying your first watch in person rather than online. Not only for the in-store experience, where you could evacuate questions and get personalized attention, but also because you can try them and see how they look around your wrist.

If you decide to go for a new one, we recommend authorized dealers who carry several brands or mono-brand stores. In case you would prefer a vintage watch, you should visit a retailer that would be honest and experienced enough to recommend and assist you in the process of buying your first luxury watch. At APR57, we have more than forty years of experience, and a brand new gallery of 4000 sq ft, located at 200 W 57th St, Ground Floor, New York you. You can visit or call us at (212)- 246- 2400 we will happily help you!

Your watch should come with a guarantee. The usual length is two years; however, some brands like Rolex give warranties up to 5 years in length. At APR 57, we offer Certified Insurance Appraisal, Certificate of Authenticity, & 2-year International Guarantee.

Some iconic pieces like Omega Speedmaster, Tag Heuer Monaco, Cartier Santos, Cartier Tank, or Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso are timeless, and it’s hard to go wrong if you purchase any of them. Do your research, but avoid extensive comparisons. Choose a brand that represents you, that you will wear confidently. 

Each brand will have its own maintenance and care recommendations. It’s essential to take proper care of your watch and have it serviced following the guarantee guidelines. Keep it safe but remember this is a piece for you to enjoy as you wear! 


You are always invited to come to our Brand New Gallery, APR57, located at 200 West 57th Street in New York City, to appraise, buy, or sell your watches. We have more than 100 years of combined experience in appraising all items of value. We buy, sell, trade, and appraise antiquities, bullion, jewelry, memorabilia, watches, and more. We offer special wholesale prices to dealers and investors across the globe!