Six best dress watches for suit-wearing men
If you want to cut a dash in your suit, you can’t afford to leave anything to chance, from polished shoes that match your belt, to a perfect crease in the trousers. One of the most important aspects to consider with any suit is your watch. Checking your phone for the time is not practical – ideally, you should leave a fresh message on your answerphone informing callers as to which restaurant you can be found at that evening, and leave the phone at home.
The quintessential dress watch is discreet, with a slim leather strap that matches your belt and shoes. You want to be able to pop your sleeve easily, and also cover the watch with your cuff the rest of the time, making chunky watches completely unsuitable. Like a good suit, a fine dress watch has a timeless quality (that’s to say, fashions rise and fall around them, not that it has stopped). Here are six of the best…
The Cartier Tank
Said to have been the first wristwatch truly designed for the wrist only, with comfort and style at front of mind, rather than as an alternative to the traditional watch on a chain. The Cartier Tank is a thing of beauty, the choice of Presidents and Hollywood leading men. This is the kind of watch you hand down to your children. This is the kind of watch your children feel guilty for coveting while you’re still out on the tennis court in your seventies.
It would be difficult, nigh on impossible, to run through a list of classic dress watches for men without at least mentioning Rolex. The world’s most famous watch brand has many suitable dress watches on its roster, but the Explorer is a standout. Rolex’s Oyster line was born of man’s attempts to conquer Everest, so this is a watch formed for precision, endurance and, of course, sophistication. You may not be planning to do any mountaineering while wearing this, but you can rest assured that should the need arise, by some twist of fate, you’re well prepared.
Vacheron Constantin Historique
A bit of a mouthful admittedly, but you’ll get used to it, so often will people ask you the make of that incredible timepiece on your wrist. VC is the world’s oldest, and one of the most prestigious watch-making firms. The Historique was released around its 200th anniversary, in 1955, and is renowned for an ultra-thin movement, the thinnest ever in fact, at just 1.64mm. Beware though – the price tag is rather more substantial.
Longines are the official timekeepers for major sporting events such as the Tour de France, where every fraction of a second counts. It’s also water-resistant to depths of up to 30m, so it’s a good fit, should you be attending a select pool party in LA that starts to get a bit lively, or you feel the need to plunge into the waves during a moonlight walk on the beach with a special someone.
The Orient Bamboo is affordable, and that’s important because frankly, although we all want a stunning watch to be proud of, not all of us can afford to spend the equivalent of a reasonably-sized new car on it. Boasting a classic, retro look, with a white dial and uncluttered face that shows you the time, the date, and the maker, and nothing more, this is a great option that will go nicely with most suits.
Victorinox Alliance Mechanical
Bearing all the hallmarks of quality Swiss engineering, i.e. dependable and robust (scratch-resistant) the Victorinox Alliance is not only reliable, it seamlessly accessories for a whole swathe of occasions. The kind of watch you can have confidence in whether you’re at a swish dinner party, or crawling on your belly out of an ambush in the desert.
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