Top-drawer watch styles every man should have in his collection.

Building a timepiece collection can mean many different things to its owner. For some, a watch collection is akin to collecting cars, artwork — or even coins, for that matter. For others, it’s a way to make a statement. Let’s face it; men have limited choices when it comes to jewelry. So having a great watch to dress up a day on the links or a night out on the town takes on more meaning for men.
When it’s time to get serious about self image, amassing a fine timepiece collection is the way to go. As easy as owning the most impeccable suit, the right shoes, and the car that ensures a front row spot at the Fountainbleau, here are four watch styles that every man should have.

must-have-1The Complication Watch
Complications can range from simple displays of the date to extremely rare works of high horology that combine numerous functions. Vacheron Constantin’s Tour de I’lle, the most complicated wristwatch ever made, has 16 complications and is made of 834 parts. Only seven Tour de I’lles were made in 2005. There are so many complications to choose from nowadays that it is, well, complicated. But to make it easy, wrap Francois-Paul Journe’s Sonnerie Souveraine around your wrist; it is one of the most complex of horological creations, therefore one of the most valuable. So why own a complication watch? That question is like asking a Maserati owner why they didn’t just buy a Ford.

BREGUET Classique Grande Complication (5347PT). $461,000.  F.P.JOURNE Sonnerie Souveraine. Price upon request.

must-have-2The Dress Watch
Black tie, night at the opera, Tom Ford suit, clinching the big real estate deal — this is it; this is the must-have watch for fine and momentous occasions. Whether gold, stainless, platinum, or rose-gold case, a dress watch should wrap the wrist in a bracelet. And a little bling can go a long way. Vacheron Constantin’s Patrimony Traditionnelle is the gotta have with its more than 1,500 diamonds. Rolex sets the standard, too, with its Oyster Perpetual styles, but tops for this category is any of its Oysters in Rolex’s Everose gold, a patented mix of gold, copper and a touch of platinum. These are watches that get passed down as heirlooms.

ROLEX Oyster Perpetual Sky-Dweller, Everose Gold, $48,850. VACHERON CONSTANTIN Patrimony Traditionnelle, 18-karat gold, 1519 diamonds, 8.80cts. $106,200. 

must-have-3The Dive Watch
Especially for anyone who lives near water — and whether you actually know a hog loop from a hookah — the dive watch is one of the essentials of any collection. Versatile, durable, and legendary, these watches received their call to action in the early 20th century to ensure the accuracy needed by Navy SEALS. The top-dogs of dive watches have plenty to offer. Hublot’s King Power Oceanographic makes serious waves with its case crafted from titanium and is water resistant to a whopping 4,000 meters. Blancpain created its Fifty Fathoms in 1953 and its new models are worth their salt, too. Collectors of dive watches should look for toughness, but not skimp on style.

BLANCPAIN Fifty Fathoms, Bathyscaphe Chronograph Flyback, $17,200. HUBLOT King Power Oceanographic 4000, $19,900. 

must-have-4The Modern Haute Horology Watch
The ultimate in art piece watches, these watches — sometimes called novelties — push the limits of modern design, technology, and well, sometimes common sense. Their one-of-a-kind nature will elicit much attention in the form of questions, puzzlement, and definitely, envy. Ulysse Nardin made modern haute history when it unveiled its wildly unconventional Freak watch 13 years ago, and its introduction of Freak spin-offs make this model the one to watch. Richard Mille has cornered the market with his marvels of modern wrist candy. The exclusiveness of the watches is also part of their appeal — many are limited editions. So the odds of seeing anyone else wearing your masterpiece are slim to none.

ULYSSE NARDIN Freak Blue Cruiser. $95,000, Ulysse Nardin Boutique. RICHARD MILLE Dizzy Hands, $120,000. 

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