Versace V-Urban Watches Reviewed

Today I'm going to take a look at the V-Urban Versace Watch from the Versace – Spring/Summer 2019 Collection. 

On first glance it has a very mesmeric quality. The white kaleidoscopic-esque sunray dial pulls you into the watch and allows the finer details to unravel around it. 

This watch for men takes inspiration from vintage aesthetics. Harking back to the elegance of yesteryear and, in particular, watches from the 50s and 60s.

You can see the vintage hallmarks expressed and embodied in the watches simplicity. The deft-design,  understated in size with meticulous details, it features an ultra-flat case that is perfect for more formal looks.

You can have the options of the double-stitched tobacco coloured leather Butterfly buckle (my personal favourite) or the more ostentatious two-tone steel with middle links in IP gold Butterfly buckle. 

I'd love to know how this watch is received by the hardcore Versace fans. Naturally I'm a fan, I seriously recommend you catch The Assassination of Gianni Versace wherever you can. I'll leave a link to the Netflix series here

I've always found Versace to be one of the most important pioneers for women’s fashion. The way he wanted to make them feel empowered, sexy and independent in his clothes. A quote from Gianni Versace from the book 'The World's Most Influential Fashion Designers reads 'Fashion has to be free to express personality and individuality. I always look for people who are out of the crowd, who are individuals, who are free, who have a real sense of style, which means their own sense of style.'

These words sum up my entire philosophy on fashion. So does this watch echo the late Gianni's believe? 

For my money it does. The watch has a very unique style and visual feel. Perhaps with the steel bracelet could be mistaken for a Rolex Datejust 36 Champagne Burst, but only from afar and there are many distinguishable differences between the two. 

It has the Versace stamp with the Medusa at 12 o’clock. Versace fans will love that. 

Minimalist yet decidedly chic, it is an accessory with a metropolitan calling. A must have for the classy Versace man. Available now in Versace boutiques, authorised retailers and online at versace.com (Currently 825 GBP at the time of writing).

Top 12 Luxury Watches for Stylish Men 2019

Today I'm going to introduce you to some luxury watches that are on my wish list. It's very much an aspirational thing to be able to afford a luxury watch. Whilst a watch doesn't define you, it can certainly communicate a message that you're serious about your appearance. Plenty to get through so let’s get into it.

 

Omega Seamaster 300m 

The Omega Seamaster is arguable one of the most iconic dive watches of all time. This particular Seamaster is a tribute to the brands maritime legacy. Various incarnations of the Seamaster 300m have been worn by James Bond, starting with Pierce Brosnan in Goldeneye who wore the Seamaster Professional (both quartz and automatic) throughout his tenure.

Bond 25 will mark the 25th anniversary of Omega’s involvement with the James Bond franchise. 

All the watches I am listing can be found through Watchfinder who are the proud sponsors of this post. All their watches have a 12-month warranty and are put through vigorous accuracy and authenticity checks.

PRICE £2,550 

Breitling Navitimer 01

I could look at the dial face on this Breitling Navitimer 01 watch for hours. Quite happily. It has that energy, that look of a watch that you want to live in. If there was a Honey I shrunk the Blogger movie, I'd want to be the leading shrunken man and I'd want to run around inside this watch. The bezel has this cog-wheel texture that gives it this industrial hyper-masculine sensibility. 

PRICE £5,250

Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Grande Date

I class the Jaeger watches as the haute couture of watches. What do I mean by that? I don't really know. But they have an irrepressible flair. Many brands have attempted to replicate that elongated bezel with concave striped silver chassis. To no avail. There's only room for one maestro in this division. 

PRICE £6,750


IWC Big Pilots

I will be touching on a more ostentatious IWC watch later in the blog. For now feast your eyes on this Big Pilots watch. Notice the sub-dial on the 3 O'clock position that tells you when your movement is in need of some juice. Dig that. 

PRICE £7,395



Bremont DH-88

My new best pals, Bremont. So kind of them to invite me to the Henley Regatta a few weeks back. You can read about my day out and a brief history on Bremont on a separate post here. There's a wonderful blurb about the history and the inspiration behind this watch on the Watchfinder site. Bremont are a very romantic brand. I'm slightly infatuated with them right now. 

PRICE £7,500

Omega Speedmaster Missions

We spoke about the moon landings before. You know I'm obsessed with all that right now. We haven't been back to the moon since 1972. Do you know why? Yes money, back in the day it cost something like 4 billion USD to get on the moon. The Vietnam War kicked off and things just got shelved. But largely people just lost interest. Can you believe that? 

So this Speedmaster Mission is one of a 22-piece limited edition commemorating the 40th anniversary of its legendary Moonwatch. 

PRICE £7,650

Hublot Classic Fusion

We're going through the gears now. Into the 5 digit category. This Hublot Classic Fusion speaks to me. It has that aforementioned aspirational elegance. Cleaner face, deft minimalism, no pretence, no chi-chi. 

PRICE £10,950 

Rolex Datejust 41

Can you believe we have gotten this far without mentioning a Rolex watch yet? This has a sparse, almost supernatural feel to this watch. If those protesters camping outside Area 51 right now broke through the fences, found an orgy of alien autopsy reports and discovered this Rolex watch was delivered to earth as an offer of peace from an extra-terrestrial being; I wouldn't be a bit surprised. 

PRICE £8,925 

Rolex Submariner

I'm going to slide in the Submariner 5513 here surreptitiously. It really is the watch that got me into watches. Bond fans will recognise this watch from Live and Let Die. "Pure magnetism darling". 

PRICE £10,950 

Rolex Daytona

Confession, this is not really my style. The watch is of course beautiful, but not one I would normally gravitate towards. That said I’m a huge race fan. Love the F1, love Stock Car racing (yes I’ve seen Days of Thunder and Talladega Nights way too many times) and the Daytona 500 is the tip of the spear when it comes to NASCAR. If money was no object I'd be the proud owner of this Daytona Watch

PRICE £12,650

IWC Portuguese Perpetual Calendar

There is something about brown alligator leather over silver bezels and dial faces. Arabic Silver to be precise. It's just a gorgeous combination, they saddle so well, it's the ornate-embodiment of class. 

The moon phase dial; often times I see this on the underside of the centre pin. Here it's in the treble twenty range, to use a darts analogy. It's prouder, its confident. This IWC watch will be the real show pony in my watch drawer someday. 

PRICE £17,500

Patek Philippe Grand Complications

This isn't a watch this a lifetime achievement award. I picked this Patek Philippe because you need to see what a luxury Rose Gold watch should look like. So often I'm seeing Kickstarter brands use Rose Gold to offer the verisimilitude of luxury, but this is the real deal. 

I love the brown sun-brushed dial face that gives it an exotic unquantifiable quality. As Patrick Bateman would say, 'something illusory'. He would also ask people to not touch the watch. I'd hire my own bouncers if I were to wear this out in Clapham. 

PRICE £47,500

About Watchfinder

Watchfinder & Co, the Preowned watch specialists, have thousands of watches available from more than 50 brands. As well as the brands listed in this article you can find preowned watches from Panerai, Cartier, Montblanc and more. With close to 20,000 Excellent reviews on Trustpilot, you can shop with confidence.

 

Lord Timepieces Review | British Watch Brand on the Rise

Today I'm going to wax some serious praise on Lord Timepieces. They were kind enough to send on this exquisite Chrono Rose Gold Black watch for me to review. 

Firstly, the pictures don't really do it justice. Entombed in a rose gold bezel sits a perforated dial face, intersected with 3 dial faces, each with their own design. 

It has an aviator quality to it. Handsome, sleek and elegant. What's great when I created this Lord Timepieces review is how it really catches your eye, without being overly showy. It's a 45mm so doesn't come across too muscular. It's a chunk of money at £145, but in the grand scheme of things and compared some branded dress watches it's very evenly priced. 

Other watches from the website I have my eye on are thee Sport Black Silicone, the Sport Gold and the Chrono Gold Black. 

The Sport Gold Black Silicone has a dialled-down dial face that looks very rugged. Quasi-retro but at the same time, I can see Christopher Lambert rocking this in some prison Sci-fi film set in the year 2047 when all the cars look terrible and the only stylish thing left is this watch!

The Sport Gold is undoubtedly a more bling take on the Black Silicone. Not my usual go-to style but I do like to mix things up every now and then. This would be perfect for that upmarket urban night out. When you're wanting to get that little extra attention in the club or bar. 

This Chrono Gold Black Lord Timepiece is the inverted version of the Chrono Rose Gold Black watch I was sent. A very 'dressier' style than I'd usually go for but after showing the page to some other friends, it was this one that came out top. 

More reasons to love Lord Timepieces 

Have a nose around their site I'm sure you'll find at least one piece that will grab you. Great news if you're a student as Lord Timepieces offer 10% to all students

They ship internationally for FREE, although check the customs and import charges if you're buying outside the UK. 

It's a London based brand. 

*This sponsored post/review was created in collaboration with Lord Timepieces.

Inside Track: Best Watch Instagrammers to Follow

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Who knows their onions when it comes to watches? Sure you can follow GQ, Esquire and all those boys. But it's the journalists themselves, the specialists that give you inside track. Beyond the journalists you have the watch creators, the designers, the rabbit hole is endless.

I've got a few instagrammers that I keep my eye on when certain events like BaselWorld or SIHH 2019 comes up. I've penned down a list and if you're into your watches, then give these accounts a follow.

SOPHIE FURLEY 

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This lady is an obsessive. Sophie Furley is the Editor-in-Chief of Revolution magazine and is at every launch, event and exhibition all over the world.

I'm sure she could quite easily moonlight as a travel blogger if her diary allowed. Her posts are a plethora of different luxury and submariner watches. Eclectic, diverse but always clearly delineated. 

CHRONONDO 

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Chronondo (or Dan to his pals) was established in 2015, has 30 timepieces in his watch drawer from Jaeger LeCoultre to Audemars Piguet, and has an online store where people can buy and sell watches free of charge

Dan also extends his great taste in watches to other elements of his wardrobe. Very distinguished, always well turned out. 

GILE ENGLISH 

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Whilst you should definitely be following the Bremont Instagram page, (support British design and manufacturing where you can people) it's also quite cool to see what goes on behind the scenes sometimes.

Co-Founder Giles English (now there's nominative determinism in action) is something of a swashbuckling entrepreneur. I'll be honest, I just love the cars he drives around in. Oh and the watches. Of course the watches. 

ELIZABETH DOERR

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Well I envy Elizabeth the most. Watch journalist, and editor-in-chief of Quill and Pad, she gets to hang around all the big knobs. It must be a cushy gig being a watch journalist. If I had to start over I would be a dedicated watch journalist.

Flown around the world, check out some watches, press the flesh with Pierce Brosnan, then a good old knees up back up the hotel. Someone else will pick up the tab. How's my aim watch journo's? Can't be any more to it than that surely? 

(Remember folks don't phone in, it's just for fun). 

ROLF STUDER

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And then there's dear old Rolf Studer. I like the name Rolf, it's been blighted perhaps in the past few years by you know who, but here is a Rolf you can rely upon. Rolf Studer, CEO of Oris, as well fastidiously annotating all the Oris watches that christen his wrist, he also has a lustrous head of hair. 

Let me know who else I should follow in the watch world, drop me a comment below or catch me on Instagram. 

 

Why Own a Luxury Watch?

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It's a wonderful time to be a watch owner. With the rise of capital crowdfunding, watch brands such as MVMT and Adexe London have enjoyed huge success over the past couple of years. 

Men have graduated from the odds and sods draw, (that paraphernalia stuff now gets sloshed around window sills and shoe boxes that gets tossed without taxonomy under the bed) to a fully-fledged watch draw brimming with all kinds of boutique and often, unheard of brands. 

But it all feels a little vacuous without that special luxury watch. The Excalibur every man dreams of unsheathing once he opens his draw. But why have a luxury watch in today's modern climate when the standard of entry level watches are so good? 

Put simply, there are some fundamental truths in life, one being there is something quite incontestable about owning a luxury watch. The notion of craftsmanship, the complexity of complications, the sublime harmony and symmetry that only come from a luxury watch foregoes the most palpable of gratifications. 

Whether it be a Rolex that makes you feel aligned with 60's era James Bond, an IWC that reflects your affinity with the lustrous Bradley Cooper, a Patek Philippe for the paragon of irrefutable masculine chic, or a Jaeger LaCoutre simply because it sounds sexy, a luxury watch says something about you. 

It omits a certain aura and as the saying goes, one can read a shape of a man’s character by the company he keeps on his wrist. Or as Rocky Balboa more eloquently puts it, 'You want to have a good time, then you're going to need a good watch'. 

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Recently I had a great compliment on my dress watch, that came from an unexpected source who's critique in men’s fashion I deeply admire. Having laudatory comments bestowed upon you from your peers is unfathomable. 

A luxury watch is an investment that typically holds its value, and we haven't even spoken about the sentimental value one can accredit to a family timepiece. It's why Tom Hanks gives back the pocket watch to Helen Hunt at the end of Castaway, even though she gave up on him and married the dentist. 

It's why Bruce Willis goes back for his father’s watch in Pulp Fiction and chances perilous consequences, some too colourful to delineate here.

A luxury watch if nothing else could be your legacy. For all the materialistic-skeptics out there, it could be the greatest thing you do. 

IWC Schaffhausen & Santoni | In Selected Boutiques Worldwide

If you're an IWC Schaffhausen nut, then you'll be pleased to know that they have collaborated with luxury leather specialists Santoni to offer leather accessories by in boutiques across the world. This collection of meticulously hand-dyed leather items is designed to echo IWC timepieces, some of which are already fitted with Santoni leather bracelets.

The product range includes a credit card holder, belt and bracelets. 

Giuseppe Santoni, CEO of Santoni, adds: “Santoni and IWC Schaffhausen share a passion for authentic hand-crafted items, select materials and uniqueness.

I am proud that we are developing our collaboration further and are able to offer an exclusive selection of handmade Santoni products in selected IWC boutiques”.

This collaboration adds to the further work they're doing for the Charles Darwin Foundation (Providing scientific research, technical information and assistance to ensure the preservation of the Galapagos Islands) Formula 1 and the Sport for Good Foundation amongst others. 

 

A wide range of colours

All accessories are made from high-qualify calf-leather and come in up to nine different colours.

They range from classic, subtle colours like brown, blue and black to striking, trendy tones such as orange, red and pink.

These products echo the colours of the Santoni bracelets IWC has outfitted many of its watches with since 2009. Each item is meticulously hand-dyed in Santoni ateliers, developing a unique patina over time.

 

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Who wears IWC Schaffhausen? 

No doubt the demographic is for the man with a disposable income. The prices are not listed on the IWC website but through a little digging I've found they can cost as much as £80k and some entry level IWC's can start around £3.5k. 

The ambassadors I've seen championing IWC are Lewis Hamilton, Bradley Cooper, Sir Patrick Stewart, Dev Patel and Cate Blanchett.

 

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A little history on IWC SCHAFFHAUSEN

With a clear focus on technology and development, the Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen has been producing timepieces of lasting value since 1868.

The company has gained an international reputation based on a passion for innovative solutions and technical ingenuity.

One of the world’s leading brands in the luxury watch segment, IWC crafts masterpieces of Haute Horlogerie at their finest, combining supreme precision with exclusive design.

As an ecologically and socially responsible company, IWC is committed to sustainable production, supports institutions around the globe in their work with children and young people, and maintains partnerships with organisations dedicated to environmental protection.

 

A little history on SANTONI

Santoni started operations in 1975 in Corridonia, in the heart of the shoemaking district of the Marche region of Italy.

What was originally a high-end footwear atelier turned in forty years into one of the leading players in the global luxury goods market.

 

Carl where can I get my hands on these Santoni Accessories? 

These accessories will be available from March 2018 across select IWC boutiques: Madison Avenue in New York, Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles, New Bond Street in London, Residenzstraße in Munich, Nanjing West Road in Shanghai, and Hong Kong Heritage.

You can see a couple of styling shots below should you need some inspiration on how to take photos of watches.

 

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50 Years Anniversary for Rolex & Sir Jackie Stewart

2018 is a particularly special year for Rolex and Sir Jackie Stewart, as it marks the 50th anniversary of their partnership. At the minute, aside from Charlie, I'm struggling to find something that will attach itself to me for 50 minutes let alone 50 years. 

 

How did it all begin Rolex and Jackie Stewart? 

Back in the 1930s, trailblazer Sir Malcolm Campbell aka “the king of speed” broke the World Land Speed record with a Rolex on his wrist; a pioneering moment on the long, flat and firm Daytona Beach which would establish motor sport as an integral part of Rolex’s culture.

Did you know that the most expensive watch in the world was a Rolex that Paul Newman wore throughout his racing career? Originally a gift by his wife Joanne Woodward, it sold for $18 million dollars at an auction last year and has the inscription engraved “Drive carefully”. 

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In 1992, Rolex formalized its relationship with Daytona as Title Sponsor of the Rolex 24 At DAYTONA and following the turn of the twenty-first century the watchmaker was named an Official Partner and the Official Timepiece of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

You may have noticed Rolex's presence in Formula 1 in the last couple of years, in 2013, Rolex became a Global Partner and the Official Timepiece of Formula 1®.

©Rolex/James Moy THE START OF THE FORMULA 1 2018 ROLEX AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX

©Rolex/James Moy THE START OF THE FORMULA 1 2018 ROLEX AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX

Reflecting on his career to date, that includes three FIA Formula One Drivers’ World Championships™, Sir Jackie Stewart said: “I am honoured to have been with Rolex for 50 years, it’s a rare commitment and almost unheard of in sport – it has been a fantastic journey together. I am still as impressed and in awe of the brand today as I was back then.

I purchased my first Rolex having qualified well at the Indianapolis 500, before I became a Rolex Testimonee. It was a Rolex Day-Date 18 carat gold with President bracelet and it instantly established my love of and respect for Rolex.

©Rolex/Guillaume Mégevand ROLEX TESTIMONEE, SIR JACKIE STEWART BEFORE THE GOODWOOD REVIVAL 1957 BRITISH GRAND PRIX CELEBRATION

©Rolex/Guillaume Mégevand ROLEX TESTIMONEE, SIR JACKIE STEWART BEFORE THE GOODWOOD REVIVAL 1957 BRITISH GRAND PRIX CELEBRATION

The watch that I particularly treasure is my new Daytona. It was presented to me in 2016 by Rolex at the Grand Prix de Monaco to celebrate the 50th anniversary of my first win around the hallowed streets of the principality.

There is a special engraving on the back of the watch, which of course makes it all the more important to me. Rolex has become the most desired watch in the world – the esteem, the prestige, the pride of ownership that Rolex commands is unmatched.”

Wearing his distinctive Royal Stewart tartans, Sir Jackie continues to attend races globally and his ongoing loyalty to motor sport makes him an ultimate Rolex Testimonee – embodying the dedication, excellence, precision and innovation that also underpins Rolex watchmaking.

We only wish Rolex would come back and usurp the Omega boys that are currently running the helm at the James Bond franchise. As well as racing they have a lustrous heritage for appearing in style-driven films such as American Psycho and Get Carter. 

 

Top 10 Men’s Affordable Fashion Watches

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I’ve accumulated a fair number of watches over the years and have become somewhat of an expert in this field. When shopping online for a watch it is hard to compare the differences as you’re cross-referencing written facts. When you physically have a collection side by side and you’re holding one watch in one hand and another in the other, it becomes somewhat easier to pick a favourite.

Today I’m reviewing Men’s Fashion Watches and ranking them from 1-10 in order of preference. A fashion watch is something affordable, retails from approximately £50-£250 in price and therefore you may have more than one in your watch collection. Swapping them out depending on the style and colour of your outfit.

1. Rotary Rose Gold Cambridge Gents Chronograph Quart Watch - £249

2. Fredrick Jackson Tailor Mustard Watch - £135

3. KARTEL Watches - £75

4. Rotary Tradition Men's rose gold Swiss Watch - £229

5. Brathwait Watches - £145

6. Rotary Oxford Silver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch - £149

7. McCabe Heritage Watch - £220

8. OWL Rose Gold & Dark Grey Watch - £135

9. Rotary stainless steel skeleton watch - £249

10. CIRCULR C3D Navy Watch - £39.99