4 Great Watches Under $3k


Rolex: not a watch for under $3k

A great watch for under $3k? Totally doable. But don’t ask hodinkee.com. They’re too busy touting Watches Under $10,000 That’ll Have You Looking Like a Million Bucks. Oh for Pete’s sake. That’s like “a list of sports cars under $100k that will make you stop wishing you were driving a Ferrari.” Here are four great watches under $3k that won’t leave you feeling short-changed. . .

there’s nothing like a Ferrari. But there are plenty of kick-ass sports cars that cost less than 100 grand. Just as there are LOTS of watches under $3k that “have you looking like a million bucks.”

That’s especially true as we’re talking about looking like $1m, not feeling like $1m. Remember: your average non-horophile can only identify one-and-only-one watch: Rolex. Like the Cosmograph Daytona above. Which fails to make our shortlist by a good $10k. The simple answer there . . .

A fake Rolex

According to this video, you can buy a really convincing fake Rolex for about a grand. Where? Do I look like a fence to you? While there’s no doubt a fauxlex will inflate your PNT (perceived net worth) to seven digits, I caution against it.

Not only will you be subsidizing criminals, you will have to interact with them. What could possibly go wrong? Besides, there are other options: genuine OEM timepieces that leave you with a watch worth having when you look like shit.

Longines Elegance: a great watch for under $3k

The Longines Elegance ($2750)

The Elegance is . . . wait for it . . . elegant. At 38.5mm, it’s small but not too small. It’s subdued understated vibe projects million-dollar taste, class and sophistication. And there’s enough gold to let people know you can afford gold without announcing I’VE GOT A GOLD WATCH BITCHES!

From a distance, Longine’s winged hourglass logo look a little, um, Germanic. But it’s strange enough to pass for proof of Illuminati affiliation, the secret organization comprised entirely of millionaires and billionaires. As everyone knows.

Lord Hamilton: a great watch for under $3k?

Hamilton Lord Hamilton ($1745)

The Lord Hamilton is not my cup of tea. For one thing, all wikipedia’s Lord Hamiltons are inbred aristocrats whose greatest accomplishment was winning the genetic lottery. For another, the LH is a bit bling.

Which is exactly the kind of bling-but-not-bling watch that makes its owner look wealthy to people who wouldn’t know a Patek Philippe Nautilus from the nuclear-powered submarine of the same name (hint: one was decommissioned in 1980, one wasn’t).

The Lord Humongous Hamilton is big (42mm), shiny and complicated, without looking cheap. Unless you know what to look for. Which, again 99% of the gen pop don’t.

America is a big ass country (big enough to accommodate the Lord Hamilton). Executives can make millions from selling paper clips. But the average person thinks the real money is in tech. An App. Videogame. Something you know, computer-related.

Apple Watch

Bottom line: if you look like you work in tech, you can look like a millionaire. So strap on an Apple Watch. Cupertino’s wrist-computer practically shouts “I’ve got people to do, things to be! Hang on. Intel’s is up three percent. YES!”

It needs to be said: vestis virum facit. Clothes makes the man. You may think your watch is a key element of your overall $1m look, and God knows the industry nurtures that belief, but your timepiece is a relatively minor wealth signaler. So buy a nice shirt and one of the great watches under $3k, willya?

[NOTE: TTAW does not earn commission on links.]

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