When it comes to watches, the most valuable watch in the world is the one you left on your dressing room table this morning. Without your watch on your wrist, you feel lost, disconnected and not even yourself. Unless you carry a phone in your pocket you are reliant on churches, stations and other people to know what the time is. You could miss your train, be late for a meeting or just lose track of time completely. On days like this, you would give anything to have your watch with you, and suddenly it is the most expensive thing in the world to you.
The Price of a Watch
Every watch has a price tag. Some watches are so cheap that they are as good as disposable. At the other end of the scale, there are watches with price tags that read “POA” just to stop people fainting at the prices. There are two types of expensive watches in this world, the most expensive watches sold at auction and the genuinely most expensive watches in the world available as new.
What makes a watch so expensive?
Watches, especially well-made watches such as Patek Philippe and even Tag Heur cost more for several reasons. Materials cost money, people need to get paid (especially those who have spent many years learning their horological craft) and when something is handmade demand nearly always exceeds supply. Quality workmanship will always cost more. The price of something is determined by two things: what someone perceives something is worth and what anyone is prepared to pay. Chinese mass-manufactured watches cost far less than a timepiece made by hand in Geneva, both do exactly the same thing, but one is considered superior and the price tag demonstrates it.
The Most Expensive Watch Sold at Auction
The most expensive watch ever sold at auction is a surprisingly modern watch. Crafted in 2014, the Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime was created to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the chiming complications. A stunning stainless-steel watch that took over 100,000 hours to make sold for $31million at auction in Geneva in 2019. Engraved with “the only” there were whispers that the watch was perfect in every way. However, the price of this Patek Philippe masterpiece falls far short of the most expensive watch in the world.
The Most Expensive Watch in the World
Encrusted with 110 Carats of multi-coloured diamonds, it is hard to remember that the Graff Diamonds Hallucination is actually a timepiece. Yours for $55 million, the watch is $15 million more expensive than its sister watch the Graff Diamonds The Fascination which is the second most expensive watch in the world. These watches are works of art to look at and very nearly cross the line into Jewellery rather than a watch. Would you pay this much just to tell the time?