A timeless wristwatch is one of the few items in a man’s life that has the longevity to be passed down to future generations. A fine suit will wear thin, a cell phone will become passe and a car is expensive and difficult to maintain. This list includes 10 of the most iconic men’s watches, all of which have the looks and the function to last for decades to come. Buy them now, wear them for the rest of your life and on your son’s wedding day, give him a present that he will hold closer than anything you’ve ever given him before. Here are our top 10 legacy watches.
#10 - The Tag Heuer Monaco
Made famous by Steve McQueen in the film Le Mans, the Tag Heuer Monaco is the perfect combination of masculinity and creativity, as the original was one of the first automatic chronographs ever produced.
#9 - The Hamilton Ventura
The only American watch to make this list, the Hamilton Ventura is an icon of design and innovation. The original Ventura was one of the first electric watches to hit the market, and it remains a classic watch to this day.
#8 - The IWC Portuguese
Coming from one of the most respected watch manufacturers on the planet, the IWC Portuguese is one of the most versatile and subtle chronographs to have ever been built. It is a refined dress watch just as much as it is a sporty chronograph; it is one of the world’s great timepieces.
#7 - The Omega Speedmaster
A veritable horological legend, the Speedmaster beat out five other chronographs, including one from Rolex, to become NASA standard issue in the mid-1960s. It remains the official choice of NASA to this day and remains the only watch to have been worn on the moon.
#6 - The Rolex Submariner
The Rolex Submariner is considered by many to be the ultimate wristwatch, despite its genuinely sporty roots as a true tool watch. The Submariner also holds tremendous collectors value and is one that will likely retain its value even when your son is ready to pass it on to the next generation.
#5 - The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak
The watch that launched an entire segment of luxury sport watches is still one of the most admired around. Classic design that hasn’t deviated in the 30-plus years since its inception and a movement provided by one of the most respected boutique manufacturers in the world make the Royal Oak a classic watch that will keep on ticking for generations.
#4 - The Jaeger-LeCoultre Memovox
A simple but functional watch originally crafted in the 1950s, the Memovox takes the appearance of a dress watch but adds a mechanical alarm. Jaeger put the Memovox line on sabbatical until just this year, but we think it will remain in production for a long time to come.
#3 - The Cartier Tank
Worn by the likes of Harry Truman and Cary Grant, the Cartier Tank was actually one of the first wristwatches ever created. It is an icon of modern luxury and a timeless accessory for men. The Tank will remain unchanged for years, and Cartier quality will ensure yours keeps accurate time for years to come.
#2 - The Patek Philippe Calatrava
Arguably the most handsome watch ever made, the Patek Calatrava seems to have been designed with the express purpose of being passed down to future generations. In fact, Patek Philippe’s advertising campaign reads: “You never actually own a Patek Philippe, you merely hold it for the next generation.” The Calatrava is the truest definition of a dress watch, and the perfect accompaniment for weddings, and all of life’s most important events.
#1 - The Rolex Day-Date “President”
The Rolex Day-Date is the most recognizable and imitated watch on the planet, but that only makes the original more timeless. Known as the President not only for the style of bracelet it employs, but also for the type of man who wears it, this watch is one that inspires men to do great things -- and more importantly, to think of where they came from.