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James Bond watches have changed over the years. Rolex, Omega and Seiko have been featured the most. Photo: jamesbondclub.ch

Imagine you start a collection of men watches and you can choose among all the watches ever made. Which ones would you pick? What are the best models? Here a selection of the ideal Gentleman Watch Collection.

1. The classic: Calatrava by Patek Philippe

This watch is so universally recognised as beautiful and classic, that the Patek Philippe’s advertising campaign reads: “you never actually own a Patek Philippe, you merely hold it for the next generation”. And this is exactly so.

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The classic Patek Philippe Calatrava. Photo: patek.com
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Sarkozy Patek Philippe Seal of Calatrava (the famous “Calatrava Cross” buckle). Photo: patekwatch.blogspot.com
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Calatrava cross buckle. Photo: small-luxury-world.com

2. The submarine watch: Rolex Submariner

Created in 1954, the Rolex submariner is a symbol of the sporty, prestigious watch. Aesthetically and mechanically perfect.

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Desired by men and women: Rolex submariner. Photo: rolex.com
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Ewan McGregor wearing his Rolex Submariner. Photo: timewatch.vn

3. The classic chronograph: Rolex Daytona

The most sought-after by collectors and fashionista alike. Its design is perhaps the most successful ever: no other watch has enjoyed such a prolonged and ubiquitous devotion.

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The most famous design: Rolex Daytona. Photo: rolex.com
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Elle McPherson wears her Rolex Daytona even on the beach. Photo: theclassicgentleman.net

4. A sporty classic: Patek Philippe Nautilus

Strong, recognisable, yet inimitable design. A best seller since 1976.

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Patek Philippe Nautilus. Photo: swisstime.ch
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Jason Statham wearing Patek Philippe Nautilus. Photo: askmen.com

5. Aviator watch: IWC Flieger

Simple and timeless. People identify IWC with this classic aviator watch.

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IWC Fliegeruhr. Photo: forum.watchtime.ch
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IWC Pilot watch. Photo: tidssonen.no

6. Immediately recognisable: Jaeger Le Coultre Reverso

Rectangular, classic, timeless, elegant. Customisable with personal engraving.

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Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classique. Photo: pinterest.com
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Clive Owen wearing his Reverso. Photo: Jaeger-lecoultre.com

7. A 70s icon: Heuer Montreal

The 70s were the years of stylish revolutionary changed and produced big shapes, bold colors, innovation in the mechanic with the introduction of automatic movement. The most iconic result in the art of watch making is the Heuer Montreal.

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Tag Heuer Montreal. Photo: chrono24.de
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Jenson Button is a TAG Heuer fan and testimonial. Photo: jetsetfashionyagazine.com

8. Trendy: Porsche Design

Born in 1073, it was the first watch in total black, that launched a trend still widely imitated today.

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Porsche Design iconic black. Photo: gadgetfreak.gr
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Patrick Dempsey wearing Porsche Design. Photo: justjared.com

9. The real race driving watch: Heuer Autavia

Beloved by racing drivers during competitions, it is the symbol of watches in motor sports.

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Heuer Autavia. Photo: fopixpic.com

 

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Satisfaction: Mick Jagger wearing a Heuer Atavia. Photo: onthedash.com

10. The Outsider: Breitling Top Time

Rare, symbol of the emerging movement of watch collecting. Not so well known by the general public, it is probably one of the watches which will acquire the most value in the future.

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Breathing Top Time. Photo: pinterest.com
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Sean Connery in Thunderball. He wears a Breitling Top Time. According to the lot notes, this is the first ever specially modified watch issued by ‘Q’ branch to James Bond. As commissioned by the Bond art department, the Breitling watch was modified by Valley Tool Company, to create a bespoke underwater ‘Geiger counter’ case with glazed bezel for the Breitling timepiece. Photo: blog.perpetuelle.com

Thank you to my friend , watch connoisseur and collector Gianvittorio Molteni for helping me compiling this chart.

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