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The 12 Most Expensive Watches In The World.

  • Saturday, 24 Dec, 2022
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The 12 Most Expensive Watches In The World

The phrase "expensive" is almost interchangeable with "luxury watch." Exciting, rare, and expensive watches are often made by elite manufacturers and sold for millions of dollars, only to be placed in carefully guarded private collections or museums. There's a good reason why they call it "high watchmaking" (or "Haute Horlogerie").

Several types of timepieces are designed for pilots, divers, soldiers, and even those used for formal occasions. But the priciest watches in the world are in a league of their own. Their whole point seems to be to get millionaires, billionaires, royal family members, and Hollywood A-listers to shell out ridiculous amounts of money.

These timepieces from the world's most prestigious watchmakers (like Patek Philippe, Rolex, Chopard, and Vacheron Constantin) are sure to impress even the most casual watch collector with their impeccable craftsmanship, exquisite design, use of precious stones and metals, and rarity (many are one-of-a-kind or limited edition).

Read on if you're interested in learning the name and price of the world's priciest watch. To give you an idea of how much these watches would be valued in today's market, we adjusted their original prices for inflation before compiling our list of the most expensive timepieces ever sold throughout the globe.

Our list of the most expensive watches in the world covers everything from antique pocket watches to modern wristwatches comparable in price to fine jewellery. The reality is that you probably can't buy even one of them right now, but that shouldn't stop you from fantasising about them.

Graff Diamonds Hallucination: $55 million

Another masterpiece from Graff Diamonds, the most costly watch ever manufactured. Hallucination lives up to its name as a genuinely stunning and fantastically surreal work.

The Hallucination, which has 110 carats of diamonds in various colours and cuts set in platinum, is an eye-catching example of Haute Horlogerie. There is a little dial in the middle of all that dazzle, but don't let that fool you; this is about as far as you can go from a tactical watch.

The Hallucination, revealed in 2014 at Baselworld for a jaw-dropping $55 million, is the product of thousands of hours of labour by a team of designers, gemologists, and professional craftspeople.

Graff Diamonds The Fascination: $40 million

Graff Diamonds, a British jeweller company renowned for purchasing and polishing some of the world's most famous diamonds, created The Fascination, which comes in at number two on our list of the world's most costly timepieces.

The Fascination is more than just a beautiful timepiece; it is also a remarkable example of diamond expertise. This is the one women's watch that can compete with the best of them.

There are 152.96 carats of white diamonds in this clock, and the pear-shaped diamond dial in the centre weighs 38 carats. If you have $40 million to spend, you may as well get two uses out of a convertible watch.

Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010: $31 million

Getting two watches for the price of one is a nice perk if you're willing to spend $31 million on a wristwatch. One dial is located on the front of the watch, while the other is located on the back.

The Grandmaster Chime is Patek's most costly wristwatch to date, and it has 20 distinct complexities. Among them are five different chiming modes (thus the name), an audio alarm, and a date repeater. Both timepieces have 18K pure gold face plates and blue opaline dials with gold-applied numerals. The case is fashioned out of white gold, and the strap is a deep navy colour from genuine alligator skin.

Breguet Grande Complication Marie Antoinette: $30 million

This timepiece, so the story goes, was initially commissioned by one of Marie Antoinette's lovers as a gift for the legendary French monarch and connoisseur of the finer things in life. It took her around 40 years to make this masterpiece, and she was put to death before it was finished, adding to the mystery and allure of the timepiece's rich history.

Featuring a perpetual calendar and thermometer, among other complications, this gold-encased timepiece has it all. The timepiece was stolen in the late 1900s and is now shown at the L.A. Mayer museum, where it may be purchased for $30 million.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Joaillerie 101 Manchette: $26 million

If we told you that this complex timepiece was made by the renowned Jaeger-LeCoultre as a present for Her Majesty the Queen in honour of the 60th anniversary of her reign, you could have an idea of what to anticipate.

This watch is really one of a kind, with its white gold case, sequence of polished and diamond-set links, and minuscule calibre 101 movement (one of the tiniest in the world) fitting for the rooms of ancient palaces and special state occasions.

Chopard 201-Carat: $25 million

This Chopard watch may not be subtle, but it surely makes a bold statement. This watch, valued at $25 million, has 874 diamonds weighing a total of 201 carats and coming in a rainbow of hues. It is a favourite of Hollywood stars and royal families alike.

Luxury watches appeal to some because of the obvious engineering and craftsmanship that went into making them. For some, it's all about the glitter. The latter is likely the case with this Chopard clock, which has a 15-carat pink diamond, a 12-carat blue diamond, and an 11-carat white diamond. Sure, it could be a luxury, but if you can afford it, why not? The fact that it also functions as a watch is only a bonus. In case this specific style doesn't appeal to you, our list of the top ten most desirable luxury wristwatches for ladies may spark some inspiration.

Patek Philippe Henry Graves Supercomplication: $26 million

This Patek Philippe gold pocket watch took 7 years to design and produce when it was first made in 1933 for a rich American banker named Henry Graves, back in the day when watchmaking relied on the skills of artisans rather than the precision of computers.

The pocket watch is one of the most expensive in the world and features a wide variety of complications, such as a minute repeater that plays the Westminster Chimes, a perpetual calendar that indicates when sunrise and sunset will occur, and a celestial chart that depicts the night sky as seen from Graves' New York home.

The complex timepiece was finally sold to an unknown buyer after a 15-minute bidding battle between some of the world's finest watch collectors. One that any lover of pocket watches would be lucky to add to their collection.

Rolex Paul Newman Daytona Ref. 6239: $18.7 million.

Paul Newman, the actor and heartthrob, was an avid watch collector and racing aficionado. So much so that his wife Joanne Woodard, back in 1968 when she commissioned this timepiece, had the words "Drive Carefully" etched on the face.

Paul Newman's Rolex Daytona Ref.6239, with its unique black and cream dial and stunning Art Deco design, is a hit among fans of fine timepieces and knickknacks from the silver screen.

The telephone auction for the watch lasted a mere 12 minutes before it was sold to the highest bidder. The fact that Rolex is not just the most well-known watchmaker but also a highly regarded premium label comes as no surprise.

Jacob & Co. Billionaire Watch: $18 million

We have reached the top ten most valuable and rare watches in the world. And the Billionaire watch by Jacob & Co. is the most appropriately called luxury wristwatch ever.

Its name is well-deserved, since it is studded with 189 carats of Akosha diamonds, a cut designed to make each stone look 30% larger than an emerald cut diamond. The tourbillon mechanism, which is made up of 167 parts and 18 diamonds, is visible through the skeletonised front of the watch.

In addition to the 18k white gold case, bracelet, and dial, the crown has a rose-cut gem for the ultimate in ostentatiousness. It's easy to see why Floyd Mayweather wanted to purchase this.

Patek Philippe Stainless Steel Ref. 1518: $12 million

The watch itself isn't very special, but the limited-edition four-piece collection it's a part of is. Its high-quality stainless steel casing sets it apart from the standard yellow- or rose-gold Patek Philippe luxury timepiece.

Collectors are impressed by the Patek Philippe Ref.1518 since it was the first watch to have a perpetual calendar and chronograph when it was released in 1941. Steel may seem like it would make a watch less precious than gold, yet luxury timepieces are seldom made from steel. Prices go rise in a linear relationship with rarity.

Patek Philippe Gobbi Milan ‘Heures Universelles’ Ref. 2523: $9 million

This double-crown world timer is more proof that Patek Philippe is a master at making the kinds of timepieces that collectors would battle over.

It doesn't take a horological connoisseur to appreciate the exquisite contrast between the blue enamel dial and the gorgeous 18k pink gold casing. Louis Cottier, a giant in the realm of horology, patented the Heures Universelles global time system in the 1930s, and it's shown here. It's also the only Patek Philippe and Gobbi Milano-signed reference 2523 in existence.

Vacheron Constantin 57260: $8 million

This custom-made Vacheron Constantin watch has 57 distinct complexities and is comprised of 2826 unique components and 242 gems; it was commissioned by a wealthy man. Ten of these complexities were cutting-edge horological innovations when the watch was made.

What are some of the most peculiar capabilities? Three unique features: the Jewish calendar, "night mode," and a double retrograde split-seconds timepiece. The casing is unfussy and straightforward, giving the spotlight to the unrivalled mechanics. Given that it took three watchmakers 8 years to develop and produce this timepiece, the $8 million price tag seems reasonable.

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