Building The Perfect Watch Collection With €25,000 — Daan’s Picks From Rolex, Grand Seiko, And Sinn
Well, here’s quite a challenging exercise. You don’t get to spend €25,000 every week (well, most of us don’t), and building the “perfect” watch collection with it is, of course, impossible. A watch collection is never perfect. But, as this is simply a hypothetical exercise, I can relax and don’t have to stress too much about it. I’m also glad that I don’t have to get rid of my current collection because I am indeed very happy with it.
What’s also nice is that Thomas already had his turn, and he built the collection I would’ve built if he hadn’t already done so. That means that I can now go a little crazier with my choices. I’m not saying the watches below have been pulled completely out of the blue. I would certainly consider adding these watches to my collection at some point. But they are most definitely a little bolder than what I would usually go for.
Right now, I own about ten luxury watches, and I enjoy all of them. But I’m almost certain that I would still be very happy with just three of them. As long as each of those three watches is enjoyable in itself and there’s a good balance among them, I think I’ll be fine. So, without any further ado, let’s take a look at my picks for my perfect hypothetical watch collection.
Rolex GMT-Master II in Oystersteel and yellow gold
This first watch will eat a big chunk out of my €25K budget. That’s because I expect it to become my daily wearer. However, it’s also somewhat of a “guilty pleasure” watch. The Rolex GMT-Master II in steel and yellow gold is a bit of an anomaly for me. At the moment, it’s the only modern Rolex reference that I fancy. At the very same time, though, it’s also quite a bit flashier than the watches I currently own. Despite that, I feel like, in many ways, this is the ultimate Rolex for me.
It’s heavily inspired by the very charming Rolex references 1675/3 and 16713 from the past. It has also evolved and been optimized in a way that only Rolex seems to master. But what I like most about it is that there’s a nice balance between its roles as a tool watch and a piece of jewelry. The Oyster case with the diver’s layout on the dial and the fat numerals on the 24-hour bezel show you it can handle almost anything. But then the Jubilee bracelet and all the yellow gold accents tell you the complete opposite. This watch shows you that you don’t always have to choose who you want to be. You can be different things at the same time.
And finally, it’s also the perfect GMT watch that I haven’t been able to find until this point. I very rarely travel across time zones, but for some reason, a GMT watch makes me feel like a man of the world. Yes, this Rolex GMT-Master II ref. 126713GRNR will be the first watch I’ll add to my new collection for €16,450.
Grand Seiko SBGW-something
The next watch should be a little more on the dressy side. Right now, I don’t own a Grand Seiko watch, but it might very well be the next brand I’ll add to my current collection. Grand Seiko’s prices have indeed started to increase over the last few years. But I still feel like the level of finishing is unmatched at the price point the brand is at right now. I especially enjoy the smaller time-only watches in the SBGW series. I’ve already mentioned the SBGW303 as one of my favorite watches in earlier articles.
But that watch is quite expensive because of its stainless steel bracelet, and I can’t call myself a fan of Grand Seiko’s bracelets overall. They’re well made, but I feel like they don’t match the watches that they come with very well. So for now, I’ll pick a watch on a leather strap as that will probably be how I’d usually wear it anyway. Thomas sometimes wears his SBGW231 around the Fratello office, and I’m always impressed by it. But as today’s picks can be a little more out there, I’ll choose one with a more outspoken dial. Both the SBGW267 with a linen dial and the SBGW291 with a 44GS case and a sunburst dial are beautiful watches. But I think I’d probably go for the SBGW283 with its frosted blue dial.
Honestly, they’re all beautiful watches, and most of them are around the €5,000 mark. I’d probably have to check them out in person to make the right decision, but anyway, it would leave me with a budget of about €3,500.
Believe it or not, this might be the most difficult choice for today. You’ve probably seen our series on the best watches under €3,000 and €5,000, and there are so many good options out there. I already highlighted the SpaceOne in titanium and the Airain Type 20 Chronograph in my “Best Watches Under €3,000” article. I also really like Nomos as a brand and could see myself picking one of its watches, although it might be a bit too close to the Grand Seiko I already “bought.” The same is true for the Longines Heritage Classic Hodinkee limited edition, even though it’s a very handsome piece.
The TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 200 Solargraph could also be a great grab-and-go watch. And what about buying both the Serica 5303 diver and the recently launched 6190 field watch with the California dial? All of those would be great options, but the brand that surprised me a couple of weeks ago was Sinn. We had a couple of the brand’s watches in the office, and they all felt and looked fantastic. For €3,340, I’d go for the Sinn T50 in fully bead-blasted titanium. The lighter material makes it the perfect vacation/do-anything watch.
Rounding off my “perfect” watch collection
Depending on the Grand Seiko watch I choose, I may have a few hundred euros to spare. If I happen to get a good deal on one and still have €525 to spend, I would round off my new watch collection with Autodromo Group C. To me, this digital watch in brushed stainless steel just looks so good.
All right, those were my choices (for now), but what about you? In the comments below, let me know what watches you’d buy to build your “perfect” watch collection with €25,000.