Thinking of making that first serious timepiece purchase? Check out these time-proven models from luxury brands.

Grand Seiko GMT SBGM021 

Like so many things the Japanese put their mind to—whiskey, cars—the country’s mechanical timepieces have an incredible reputation, and the Grand Seiko GMT has risen as Japan’s most iconic model. It’s a classic-looking thing with a flawlessly finished dial and impeccable movement housed in a case that sticks to convention. 
 
Price new in Bangkok: B187,200
Price used on eBay: Around B120,000-150,000
 
M/F, Pendulum Boutique, Siam Paragon, Rama 1 Rd., 02-610-9423. Open daily 10am-10pm
 

Rolex Oyster Perpetual (39mm)

The archetypal first-time expensive watch is also one of the smartest buys you can make. Prices for used models are all over the place owing to the huge number of model derivations, but generally a new model won’t lose too much of its value should time come to sell and you’ve kept in in good condition. It’s appeal is pretty easy to see: you can wear it with anything, it doesn’t look too flashy, the price is affordable for your average exec-level salary, and everyone knows what it is. 
 
Price new in Bangkok: From B201,400
Price used on eBay: Starting around B160,000 (39mm)
 
1/F, Cortina Watch Erawan, Erawan Bangkok, Sukhumvit Rd., 02-250-7888. Open daily 10am-8pm
 

Omega Seamaster Diver Co-Axial 

Big dive watches are like the modern-day go-to for guys after wearable expensive timepieces. The Seamaster has also cornered that market thanks to looks you can show off both in the office and at the bar. No surprise it’s the timepiece of choice for Daniel Craig’s James Bond—along with men who want to be like him. 
 
Price new in Bangkok: B137,000
Price used on eBay: Around B77,000-120,000
 
G/F, Omega Boutique, Central Embassy, Phloen Chit Rd., 02-160-5959, Open daily 10am-8pm
 

Omega Speedmaster

Along with Rolex’s Daytona, the Speedmaster is like “the” chronograph watch. Early models date back to 1957, and the timepieces which Omega is putting out now hark back strongly to those original watches' styling. There are a hell of a lot of these watches out there—with early models way, way more highly prized—meaning new Speedmasters don’t quite carry the same kudos as their vintage counterparts. But compared to the price of a new Rolex Daytona, this is a hell of a lot of chronograph for the money. 
 
Price new in Bangkok: From B146,000
Price used on eBay: Starting around B50,000
 
G/F, Omega Boutique, Central Embassy, Phloen Chit Rd., 02-160-5959, Open daily 10am-8pm
 

Tudor Pelagos

Rolex’s sister brand, conceived to offer the reliability of Rolexes at a cheaper price point, has racked up a loyal following of its own over time. Put simply: watch nuts love these things, and by no means does buying Tudor mean buying second best. The Pelagos sits alongside the Black Bay as one of the brand’s most iconic models, sporting a look that draws obvious comparisons with a Rolex Submariner, only with the cool, contemporary finish of brushed titanium. It also has a reputation for being seriously bullet-proof.
 
Price new in Bangkok: B156,800
Price used on eBay: Around B100,000-150,000
 
1/F, Cortina Watch Erawan, Erawan Bangkok, Sukhumvit Rd., 02-250-78886. Open daily 10am-8pm
 

Nomos Glashutte Orion 38

Bankers wear Rolex; architects wear Nomos. The German mechanical brand is enjoying a moment in the sun thanks to fashion’s swerve towards uncluttered, modernist design—something which the Orion with its Bauhaus roots has in spades. It also has three other top hallmarks of a well-chosen dress watch: small diameter (38mm), slim case (7.98mm) and an in-house manufactured movement (one made by Nomos itself rather than bought from a third party)—hence how it achieves such a slender look. 
 
Price new in Bangkok: from B104,300
Price used on eBay: Around B45,000-65,000 
 
M/F, Pendulum Boutique, Siam Paragon, Rama 1 Rd., 02-610-9423. Open daily 10am-10pm
 

Tip: Make sure to negotiate sticker prices on new watches, particularly as business is currently slow for high-end watches. Or look for special promos with your credit card.

 

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