Big Budget Watch Guide

The Big Budget Watch Guide

With the popularity of our low and medium budget watch guides, we proudly present the third edition to this series; the high priced watch guide.

In this particular article, we’re going to focus on watches between $10,000 and $100,000. Obviously, there are many watches that fit into this category. As we couldn’t include them all, here are a few of our favorite watches currently on the market.

A Lange & Sohne Lange 1 Model 101.025


One of the world’s most iconic watch companies, A. Lange & Sohne introduced this timepiece back in 1994. Quite possibly their most popular watch on the market today, the Lange 1 is truly a horological masterpiece. Featuring the Lange Caliber L901.0 movement this German made timepiece is one I highly recommend for anyone serious about owning a quality timepiece.

A Lange & Sohne Lange 1 Model 101

A Lange & Sohne Lange 1 Model 101

Armin Strom One Week Fire Model RG10-WF.5N


This is a really interesting timepiece in my opinion. It has a unique design that really separates it from other watches while still maintaining a classic Armin Strom appearance. Using the ARM09 caliber movement, the watch has a black semi-skeletonized dial made with PVD and 18k gold. It has a sporty appearance but still works well with business attire and will pair nicely with a suit. If you already have a fairly in-depth watch collection, this might be the timepiece you’re looking for.

Armin Strom One Week Fire Model RG10-WF.5N

Armin Strom One Week Fire Model RG10-WF.5N

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph Model 26300ST.OO.1110ST.07


Exceptionally popular, Audemar Piguet has long been considered a member of the trifecta of watchmakers. Along with Patek Philippe and Vacheron Constantin, it has been heralded as one of the greatest watchmakers of all time. Of their many models, the most iconic is of course the Royal Oak collection. Featuring the automatic winding caliber 2385 with a column wheel and vertical clutch, this timepiece is certainly one worthy of your attention.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph

Daniel Roth Papillon Chronographe Model 319-Z-50-390-CB-BD


Daniel Roth is a fairly new watchmaker only launching in 1989. What separates them from the pack is that they only produce a handful of really incredible timepieces each year. Since their complications are so revered amongst collectors, they often sell out before they even hit the market. This particular timepiece is one of my favorites by Daniel Roth both stylistically and due to the build. It features the DR 2319 automatic movement and should really be priced higher in my opinion. Daniel Roth is certainly a company that you’ll want to pay attention to. For them, this is just the beginning.

Girard-Perregaux 1966 Full Calendar Model 49535-52-151-BK6A


Another well respected master watchmaker, Girard-Perregaux has long enjoyed a reputation for their exquisite craftsmanship and ultra-thin timepieces. In fact, many attribute the invention of the wristwatch to Constant Girard in 1880. This particular timepiece is one of the less expensive watches produced but nevertheless a fantastic investment.

Girard-Perregaux 1966 Full Calendar

Girard-Perregaux 1966 Full Calendar

HD3 Slyde Model HD3SLYDERG


One of the most interesting and unique timepieces on the market today, HD3 has taken a uniquely contemporary approach to timekeeping. The Slyde is actually a touchscreen that allows the user to change the display with a swipe of the finger. It offers various time complications and gives the user similar abilities that new smart watches offer including photos, videos and various other options. If you are in the market for a smart watch this might be the one that is most deserving of your praise.

HD3 Slyde

HD3 Slyde

Hublot Big Bang Model 301.SX.130.SX


When most people think of Hublot, they don’t think of it being a nautical brand. In fact, it is. Designed to look like the porthole of a ship, this watch separates itself from the other nautical designed timepieces in an effort to keep it unique. The timepiece uses a very bold metal design and was the first to be paired with rubber straps which make it extremely resistant to the elements. Instantly recognizable, there aren’t many watches that can take hits the way the Big Bang can.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Calendar Model Q3752520


Originally invented for use by polo players, the reverso is one watch that pairs well with almost any attire. If you’re looking for a durable watch that works as well with a tuxedo as it does with jeans, this is your pick. The face, as the name suggests, flips back which gives you the ability to protect the dial from the elements, as polo players did during the match. From a horological perspective it’s a marvel and is deserving of all the praise it’s received since being introduced. One of my favorite watches in this list, I urge you to consider it for your next timepiece.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Calendar

Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Calendar

Patek Philippe Calatrava Model 5119R

About $23,000

Patel Philippe is without question, equivocation or mental reservation, my favorite watchmaker in the world. If you’ve read any of my work chances are you already knew that. Patek Philippe has long enjoyed a position in the top tier of all watch makers due to its ingenuity, exquisite craftsmanship and lineage. It is, all things considered, the very best watchmaker and the Calatrava is it’s most iconic line. The epitome of the classic dress watch, it is simple, yet refined and, if you can afford it, the one watch I encourage you to buy. Despite it’s simplicity, the Calatrava is one of my favorite watches ever made.

Patek Philippe Calatrava

Patek Philippe Calatrava

Patek Philippe World Time Model 5130G

About $47,000

If you do a considerable amount of world traveling for work or pleasure, this is the watch for you. A world timer, it gives the wearer instant access to all of the world’s time zones, with the prestige and reliability of the Patek Philippe name. An automatic timepiece, it features the Patek 240 HU caliber movement which is sure to keep you on time, every time. When you can’t afford for your watch to stop, you need something that has the guarantee behind it. No watch is more reputable than Patek Philippe.

Patek Philippe World Time

Patek Philippe World Time

Patek Philippe Complicated Perpetual Calendar Model 5140G


Patek Philippe watches have been called recession proof. They routinely sell at auction for the million dollar mark and the complications are the pinnacle of their collection. For many of their complicated watches you need to apply to own one. You can’t just walk into their boutique store and say “I’d like a Sky Moon Tourbillon please”. There’s an application process and minimal ownership requirements that have to be met – unless of course you’re buying it second hand. If you are in the market for a complicated timepiece but don’t have the budget for a grand complication, this might be the watch you’ll want to consider. Under the $100,000 mark, this timepiece is really quite spectacular. With 275 parts, it has the Patek Philippe Caliber 240 Q movement and a perpetual calendar complication. It’s really a thing of beauty.

Patek Philippe Complicated Perpetual Calendar

Patek Philippe Complicated Perpetual Calendar

Piaget Emperador Model G0A33070


Known for it’s high quality, ultra-thin movements and well made parts, Piaget is actually less known for their own watches. However, that doesn’t make them any less worthy than their competitors. This particular Piaget Emperador is truly a work of art. It pairs very well with a dinner jacket or casual wear and has a classic appearance with uniquely rounded lines that make it easy to spot. The Piaget Caliber 551P movement is well respected by watch aficionados and for the price, you really can’t go wrong.

Richard Mille RM 010 Model RM010-RG


This avant grade watch really shook heads when it came out. In a good way of course. Richard Mille has developed a reputation for having some of the most fascinating and well built watches in the luxury market, and trying to find one for under $100,000 can often be a feat in itself. This particular time piece is one you might want to consider if you want to be able to say you own a Richard Mille.

Richard Mille RM 010

Richard Mille RM 010

Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42 Model RDDBEX0351


Classic design with an art deco style, this Roger Dubuis is a great choice if you’re looking for more of a whimsical watch that can really help showcase your personality. Certainly, not for everybody, this uniquely decorated timepiece has what can only be described as a superb movement buried inside it. The 198 components that make up this Roger Dubuis RD640 movement are exceptionally well crafted. For an artist, an art collector or just someone who loves art, this is possibly a watch for you.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42_

Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42_

Rolex Daytona Model 116520W


The Rolex Daytona has long been one of Rolex’s top selling watches, some fetching upwards of $1 million at auction. Made famous by men like Paul Newman, the Daytona is one watch that’s synonymous with automobile racing. If you are in the need for a chronograph, this entry level Daytona might be a great option for you. At just over $11,000, it will put the Daytona name on your wrist and save you a significant amount of money in comparison to many of the more expensive versions on the market. In the end, you’re still getting a Rolex and the quality that comes with the name.

Rolex Daytona

Rolex Daytona

Rolex Submariner Date Model 116618LB-BLU

About $34,250

Let it be known that you can buy a Submariner for less than $30,000. You can also buy them for much more. This particular model is sold in 18k yellow gold and features an automatic COSC
Rolex Caliber 3135 movement. A classic diving watch, it can be worn to 300m / 1000ft below sea level. If you are a diver by trade or pastime, this is an excellent watch for you. Of course, the Submariner is an exceptional choice for anyone who enjoys being on the water.

Rolex Submariner Date

Rolex Submariner Date

Romain Jerome Titanic DNA Model T.222BB.00.BB


Made from actual parts of the historic ship, the Titanic DNA is easily recognizable as a well regarded collectors piece by famed watchmaker Romain Jerome. Known for using parts from unusual and historic materials, they have enjoyed success as one of the more collectible watches. They also offer watches made from parts of the moon as well as an active volcano.

Romain Jerome Titanic DNA

Romain Jerome Titanic DNA

Ulysse Nardin Maxi Marine Diver Model 266-33-3A-925


The award winning watchmaker is well regarded for producing some of the most advanced timepieces in the world. So advanced that each timepiece comes with an operating handbook. Produced in limited quantities, Ulysses Nardin makes some really exceptional dive and sport watches, this particular model being no exception. With the automatic COSC Ulysse Nardin UN26 engine moving it, this watch is rated for diving up to 1000ft. For those water babies out there, it’s a great pick.

Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Model 81180.000J-9118


Next to the Patek Philippe Calatrava, this is my favorite dress watch on the market today. Simple, yet sophisticatedly elegant, this timepiece has all the marks of a great watch with exceptional craftsmanship and only the very best materials being used. It truly is a work of art worthy of being coveted.


We hope you’ve enjoyed this edition in our series on watch guides for various budgets. Of course, few of us can afford a time piece in this category. Therefore, I urge you to take a look at our low budget and medium budget watch guide for some timepieces that are far more affordable. Stay tuned for our next article on the highest priced watches sold today.

The Big Budget Watch Guide
Article Name
The Big Budget Watch Guide
Find out what watch to buy between $10,000 and $100,000 - yes you could buy a car for that, but the watch will likely increase more in value.
14 replies
  1. Robert Strippy says:

    I would rather have a reasonably priced watch that kept perfect time, and a reasonably priced car that rode well. “Expensive” is a bad idea in any case. You do not make money by wasting it on ostentation. (Warren Buffett is a fitting example.) The motto of my prep school is “Esse Quam Videri”–“To Be, Rather Than To Seem To Be.” Give a slob some money and you have a rich slob. Buy him some fancy clothes and you have a well dressed slob. Send him to school and you have an educated slob. You can decorate him, but he’ll still be a slob. The moment he opens his mouth, you’ll know.

  2. Jerry says:

    Hi all, good article. I have a Rolex GMT but drive a $5K car. I’d rather have the Rolex that will last forever than a flashy car. Well, having both would be even better.

  3. Joe says:

    Certainly some amazing pieces here. I know little about fine watches but enough to know that I like a purely mechanical watch for more reasons than just keeping time. There is something… forgive me… “timeless” about them. Even though my relatively inexpensive ORIS is nothing compared to these beauties, I enjoy it and it brings a smile to my face when I turn my wrist to look at the dial. It’s not an investment piece, by any means. But then again I drive a Chevy. (Volt) If I were to buy an investment watch, nothing short of a Patek would do and it would have to be sharper than the simple Calatrava, yet I don’t see myself passing the application examination to wear a complication! So I guess that leaves me out.

    As for your emailed question about nice car or nice watch… Comparing a car to a watch seems only valid if both can be viewed as pure luxuries. I generally need a car to get to work to make money, so it is really a tool, not a luxury. Like any tool, you want a good one but at some point, you can buy more car than is practical, including taking depreciation into account. One could argue a man needs the watch as well as the car to get to work on time, but easy ways to tell time are all around us. Yet a gentleman’s dress is likely to call for a dress watch as a part of the ensemble, no? So you might choose it for it’s qualities as a piece of jewelry like your double-sided cufflinks and your tie clip, and for other reasons horological, personal as well as financial. The “investment” angle is something else entirely, in my opinion. Reserved for those who are able to make long-term investments and not be afraid to wear them in public. (Of course these can be reasonably insured.) I sometimes feel a bit vulnerable wearing a a $2,000 watch around because it’s not nice enough to insure, but might be nice enough to attract thugs. Then again, my iPhone 6+ is a thug attractant too. Anything nice can be a target.

  4. Prus Prusic says:

    Out of all these watches, only the 5140G and the Rolex Daytona look wearable and are at the same time practical, IMO. And even then, I’d prefer a Junghans Max-Bill over these 2. I’d rather buy a proper car (which means that it was built before 1969, or atleast 1975… which also means that it won’t depreciate over time). Both of these are simply luxury for the normal citizen of a big town (with iPhones and public transport being around), yet the car is still more practical than most of these watches. And usually comes with a watch in the dashboard, too!

    • Alfonso Luis Alfaro says:

      Love it!
      In my choice I would also include the gold rolex day date with a leather strap at $ 25,000 Usd .
      Dressy and casual at the same time

  5. Robert says:

    I don’t intend to offend, but the vast majority of these watches look like something worn by a rapper or professional basketball player.

    A gentleman’s watch should do one thing and one thing only: tell the time to the nearest minute or so, with clarity and understatement. Moon phases? Split-second chronographs? Rotating bezels? Transparent dials? Oversized chapters? Telling you the MONTH? Those complications are unnecessary, gaudy and frankly, make the wearer look ridiculous.

    There are a few decent new watches being made today. Breguet makes the best dress watches one can buy. If one can’t afford a Breguet, a Patek, Vacheron or A-P will do, but only their plainest designs, and one will have to live with the fact that all three brands are routinely knocked-off, so many observers will think that even a genuine one might be a fake. Lange’s “Saxonia” model is nice but most of their others are far too fussy. IWC makes a handsome, simple watch. Junghans’ watches designed by Max Bill are very good, and excellent value, to boot. Bell & Ross’ “Vintage Collection” designs are OK, if one wants a knockabout watch. Blancpain makes an excellent pocket watch but alas, most of their wristwatches are no longer wearable.

    Full disclosure: I’ve been dealing in vintage watches for almost 25 years.

  6. Farhad says:

    Very nice article and some very interesting comments by the gentlemen above. I like both watches and cars but have to settle in between. I have and Audi car and an IWC Portuguese, I also own a vintage Omega . Besides the Lange or PP and VC the rest of the watches are not to my liking really. If the time ever came to choose to keep the car or the watch if I could I would like to keep hold of at least one good watch so i can pass it down to the next generation.

  7. Paul Curtis says:

    In my view, it is not what you can sell it for or what the perceived value is. Rather, it is what the value is to you as an individual. There is no question that watches and vehicles make a statement about your tastes and choices. However, when you have a strong internal frame of reference perception is just not nearly as important as what you have to pay for something.

    My purchases are self limited to costs which means that I buy used items from people in distress whom I can help at the same time. I have purchased three Rolex watches this way and three Mercedes-Benz vehicles as well. I would rather have older items, perhaps because i am older. (really older!).

    When I want to I can wear a nice Rolex that I know is the real thing and drive a nice car. The secret to the older cars is good maintenance. People look at my cars in amazement because of how well they appear for their age and that sometimes starts conversations with total strangers which is always interesting when you have the time.

    In any event, I don’t think I would ever be tempted to knowingly purchase a knockoff of anything. I think that says something about a person, not in terms of veneer but in terms of authenticity.

  8. Kurt says:

    Gentlemen, I think all too often people buy expensive of anything for nothing more then to show off or as a one upmanship with the “jones” next door. They then wonder why they go broke…

    I have owned some high end watches which I have loved, but, have never made money on them. Over ten years or more of ownership the cost of servicing the timepieces alone could have bought a fairly reasonable car. Of course the more complicated the watch the higher the cost of ownership. One needs to consider cost of ownership when purchasing any item, particularly in the “luxury” category. Take fine art as an example. It’s great to purchase an expensive art collection and hang it on the wall to admire, but then comes security, air-conditioning and uv light protection. Otherwise the collection deteriorates, and depending where you live, very very quickly. Same goes for watches as well as cars. How many of the people reading this own a watch winder? Or a “proper” safe?

    Experience has taught me that luxury goods are truely wonderful if bought for the right reasons. When buying luxury goods one should never perceive an investment opportunity. An item should be purchased for love and functionality. I have seen time and time again people seriously burnt purchasing what is perceived an investment piece. DONT DO IT… Buy something because you love it, buy something you can afford to maintain easily. If by chance it gains value, wonderful, good on you and congratulations. If it does not, then you have something which is still beautiful to you.

    • Sven Raphael Schneider says:

      Funny you mentioned Art Kurt, because it many countries it is exempt from inheritance tax when you show it publicly for 10 years. That’s one of the reasons art is so popular as an investment. Even after the cost of maintenance, you come out ahead.
      It’s good though to think about the cost of an item over the time span you will be using it, and not just the initial cost, but in my experience many people don’t do that.
      Good advice though, always buy something you love irregardless of market value.

      • Kurt says:

        Wow, thank you. I honestly did not know that was the case with art in other markets. Living in Australia one is somewhat sheltered from these finer points. This explains, at least in part, why the Australian art market is flat to dead and why the big auction houses have pulled out of the Australian market.

        If you have not done so already maybe you could do a piece on fine art collecting / investing. I am relatively new to this game.

  9. used audi says:

    The front section presents is dominated with a single framed radiator
    grill with curved headlamps whereas the rear sports tail lights.

    The Audi A3 is the larger brother of the A1 and is based on the architecture of the latest VW Golf.
    2 FSI(R) quattro(R) (V10) pricing (excluding $1,200 destination charge, taxes, title, options
    and dealer charges):.

Comments are closed.