The sad reality is that money is definitely an object, and when you have a family, it’s not always easy to allocate the amount of money you want to spend on a watch. But, as Thomas did in his “Shopping With Cheat Codes ‘Infinite Money’ And ‘Infinite Purchase History'” article, I’d like to consider watches that I normally don’t give much thought to. Aside from infinity money and infinite purchase history, I would also like the add the “infinite lives” cheat code (F7 + [i] in my favorite shmup game from 1989, Xenon 2). I guess I will need it, not in the last place to protect myself against an angry wife, despite the infinite money.

Anyway, creating an overview like this is not as easy as you might think. I am quite satisfied with the watches that I currently have or have had in my collection. In fact, I am not craving watches anymore as I used to 25 years ago. I will survive without them, and I’ve found that (very) expensive watches do not always bring the satisfaction that you think they will. That said, I have come up with a few watches that brought up the total invoice to approximately €2,000,000. Not bad, eh? If I had those watches at home, I would want to have that “infinite lives” cheat code! Without further ado, here we go.

infinite money Grönefeld 1941 Constant Force Remontoire

Grönefeld 1941 Remontoire Constant Force

If money played no role, I’d pop over to Oldenzaal, the Netherlands, visit the Grönefeld brothers, and try to get them to make another 1941 Remontoire Constant Force in red gold for me. Or, even better, I’d commission one in yellow gold (for some reason, I am more into yellow gold these days).

The constant-force mechanism ensures that the decrease in power reserve never influences the precision of the watch. The amplitude remains consistent during the entire 35 hours of power reserve. Grönefeld achieved this by developing a release system that activates every eight seconds and winds a small hairspring near the escapement. Aside from that, it’s just a beautifully crafted watch and movement. And yes, I’m also proud that these guys are from the same area where I was born and raised. This watch is long sold out, but the initial retail price was about €50,000.

Breguet Tradition "Grande Complication"  7047PT/11/9ZU infinite money

Breguet Tradition “Grande Complication”  7047PT/11/9ZU

I have to admit that I am not a sucker for tourbillons. I just don’t care enough about them to make them my deepest horological desire. However, with unlimited cash, you can’t call yourself a watch collector and not have a watch with a tourbillon. Funnily, there’s often discussion about whether a tourbillon is a complication or not. In my opinion, it isn’t, but this brand says otherwise. And if I want a tourbillon, it should be from the inventor of the tourbillon, Breguet.

This Breguet Tradition “Grande Complication” (so it’s even a more important complication now) has a retail price of a whopping €214,000. For that amount, you get this 41mm platinum Breguet Tradition watch with a fusée tourbillon, hence the visible chain. The finishing of Breguet’s movements is impeccable, and I love the construction and design of the Tradition movements, which are true to original Breguet pocket watches.

Credor Eichi II infinite money

Credor Eichi II

I love both Seiko and Grand Seiko watches, but there’s one other sister brand that truly competes with the Haute Horlogerie pieces from Europe. I’m talking about Credor, of course, and picked the Eichi II. I know about Grand Seiko’s Kodo Constant-force Tourbillon and appreciate the craftsmanship that went into it, but I just don’t like how it looks (there, I said it). When I visited the Credor atelier in Japan in 2015 and 2017, I was amazed by the amount of work that went into perfecting every single part of the watches. On the wall, there was a photo of Philippe Dufour, who visited the Grand Seiko/Credor manufacture and trained some of the watchmakers there.

It’s cool to see this kind of collaboration and willingness to exchange these rare skills with one another. The Eichi II is a masterpiece, to say the least. It’s a time-only piece in platinum, powered by the Spring Drive caliber 7R14. The main attraction for me, however, is the white enamel dial and blue hands. It’s an extremely rare watch, and chances are very slim that you will come across someone else wearing it (although I did once at an event in Japan that we organized in 2017). The price tag of this watch is €59,000.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin RD#2 infinite money

The Royal Oak Selfwinding Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin RD#2 ref. 26586IP.OO.1240IP.01

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Selfwinding Perpetual Calendar Ultra-Thin RD#2

I have a weak spot for Audemars Piguet, and I have had my share of watches from the brand (refs. 15300, 15202, and 26300). Though I’m not in the market for one anymore, if money allowed me to pick any AP Royal Oak, it would be the Perpetual Calendar ref. 26586IP.OO.1240IP.01. It combines the coolness of the “Jumbo” and AP’s high-end watchmaking to create an incredibly thin perpetual calendar. The combination of platinum and titanium is an interesting one too. Whereas AP used titanium for most of the watch to make it lightweight, the designers chose dense, luxurious platinum for the bezel and polished links.

Despite the complicated movement, at just 6.3mm thin, the watch is slimmer than the regular two-hand Royal Oak “Jumbo.” The caliber 5133 handles the time, date, day, month, leap year, and astronomical moon. This Royal Oak reference 26586IP.OO.1240IP.01 had a retail price in 2019 of CHF 140,000 and was a limited release of only 200 pieces.

Omega Speedmaster Professional BA145.022-69 “‘Tribute To Astronauts” infinite money

Scott Carpenter’s gold Speedmaster Professional — Image: Wind Vintage

Omega Speedmaster Professional BA145.022-69 “Tribute To Astronauts”

Though the above picks are pricey, I don’t need or want the most expensive watches in the world. Even with infinite money, I would still enjoy watches that only cost a few hundred euros (or Swiss francs). Having no limit would just allow me to pick some of the watches that I think are extraordinary in terms of complications and materials, as well as those with great stories. And that’s where the most expensive watch in this overview comes into play. In the end, I collect Speedmaster watches (the others I have are just an accumulation of timepieces), and owning an astronaut-worn/owned Speedmaster in gold is just something very special to me.

Scott Carpenter’s gold Speedmaster Professional — Image: Wind Vintage

A perfect example of a watch I’d love to own if money were no object is this Omega Speedmaster Professional BA145.022-69 “Tribute to Astronauts” that belonged to astronaut Scott Carpenter. Just like the other (active) NASA astronauts at the time, he received it during a dinner in the Warwick Hotel in Houston in 1969. Some astronauts who were only on missions after 1969 received theirs later on (those watches are numbered 1000–1008). This watch is now for sale from our friend Eric at Wind Vintage for US$1,500,000. Do I prefer this watch over the new Audemars Piguet Code 11.59 Universelle, which has a similar price tag, for example? Yes, I do. For me, it’s not always about the complexity of a watch or the desirability of a certain Haute Horlogerie brand, but rather, what makes my horological heart tick faster. You can find more information about this watch here.

Scott Carpenter wearing his gold Speedmaster — Image: Wind Vintage

With no limits, what would you pick up?

Before the Speedmaster owned by astronaut Scott Carpenter, assuming I paid retail prices, the total would have been around €465,000. However, the additional $1.5 million and taxes push it to approximately €2,000,000. Interestingly, the most expensive watch would have probably been the cheapest one if it weren’t for the story about Scott Carpenter.

What watches would you surely pick up if money and availability were of no concern? Let us know in the comments below!

You can also find and follow me on Instagram: @rjbroer