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Representing a blend of Italian design with Swiss watchmaking technology, Officine Panerai follows the inspiration of its home city of Florence, which was the cradle of the Renaissance movement and all the art and science for which it was famous.


Officine Panerai traces its origins back to 1860 when Giovanni Panerai opened a watchmaker’s shop on Ponte alle Grazie in Florence, Italy. The company became a supplier of precision instruments, such as depth gauges and wristwatches, to the Italian Navy. The radium-based powder called “Radiomir” developed by the company was a significant milestone in the development of underwater and low-light time display and the Radiomir collection, which dates back to 1936, is the lasting tribute to this.

Panerai’s other timepiece collection, the Luminor, is also named after a tritium-based luminescent substance patented by the company as the successor to Radiomir. Its wrist-based metonym introduced the crown protection mechanism that was patented in 1956 and has been one of the brand’s core design elements ever since.

Astonishingly, the first Officine Panerai collection to be made available to the general public was not presented until 1993, bringing to an end decades of secrecy linked to the company’s military supply contracts. Inspired by the models produced for commandos in the second world war, the collection became an instant hit with collectors. Only four years later, the brand was acquired by the Vendôme Group, which was subsumed into the Richemont Group’s operations at the end of the same year.

The brand developed significantly at the turn of the millennium, opening a production facility in Neuchâtel, one of Switzerland’s main watchmaking centres, in 2002 and launching its first in-house movement, the P.2002 hand-wound calibre with GMT function and 8-day power reserve, in 2005. Officine Panerai has since introduced a full range of in-house movements that power its Radiomir and Luminor models, which still today use the strong identity of the original military models.

Giovanni Panerai opens his watchmaker’s shop on Ponte alle Grazie in Florence. Not only a shop, it is also a workshop and home to the city’s first watchmaking school.
Panerai creates the first prototype of a Radiomir watch for the Submarine Group of the Royal Italian Navy.
The first Officine Panerai collection is launched as a series of limited editions available to the public.
The Officine Panerai manufacturing facility is opened in Neuchâtel, Switzerland.
Officine Panerai presents its first in-house movement.

Representing a blend of Italian design with Swiss watchmaking technology, Officine Panerai follows the inspiration of its home city of Florence, which was the cradle of the Renaissance movement and all the art and science for which it was famous.

The brand remains true to its roots as a highly-specialised supplier of precision measurement instruments to the Italian Navy and reproduces the designs of these highly exclusive vintage instruments in its current collections.

Because of its origins, Officine Panerai maintains very close links with the sea environment both in its timepieces, which retain the characteristics of robustness, precision and ultimate readability found on its original military instruments, and in its partnerships, which range from classic yachting regattas to the mammoth restoration of the 1936 Bermudan ketch Eilean, which required over 40,000 hours of work.



The Luminor collection is based on the iconic case designed in 1993 for the first Panerai collection made available to the public. The subtle differences from the original Luminor design include straighter sides without the visible ridge of the Luminor 1950 and lugs that are slightly more rounded.

Luminor 1950

The original Luminor models date from the late 1940s, when the transition from the Radiomir case to the Luminor case was made. The design is characterized by the crown protecting bridge and a flatter wider bezel.

Luminor Due

A collection with a new, thinner, case inspired by the classic Luminor design from the 1950s.


The original Radiomir models date back to 1936 and feature the distinctive cushion-shaped Panerai case design and equally distinctive wire-loop lugs – a nod to the first wristwatches, which simply had the wire loops soldered on to a pocket watch for wearing on the wrist.

Radiomir 1940

Inspired by an evolution of the Radiomir case design dated to 1940, this collection features a monobloc case in which the lugs are integrated into the case middle


Panerai: Italian roots

It all began in Florence, Italy in 1860: Giovanni Panerai opens his shop and watchmaker’s school on Ponte Alle Grazie. By the turn of the century, Panerai would have its most famed client, the Royal Italian Navy. This partnership led to Panerai developing Radiomir, a luminosity-enhancing material that was used for its dials - and which would serve the men well in battle. The Italian Navy connection would pique the interest of another royal navy too: in 1956, Panerai created the Egiziano Radiomir watch, for deep water immersion, for the Egyptian Navy. In its more modern history, Panerai continues to be linked to great men, such as Dino Zei, who in 1972 christented its current namesake - Officine Panerai. There has even been some Hollywood glamour, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone two very public, die-hard fans of the brand. Today a part of the Richemont Group and with boutiques around the world where its watches are for sale, the company has had its own manufacturing plant in Neuchâtel, Switzerland since 2002, for which its first in-house movement - a hand-wound calibre with GMT function and an eight-day power reserve – is named after.

Radiomir California 3 days

In polished stainless steel, this Panerai model, also known as PAM 0448, has a cool simplicity with its black luminous Arabic and Roman numerals set on a sleek black dial and brown strap. Water resistant to 10 bar, it is powered by the P.3000 calibre. A favourite with fans, you can find pre-owned models on sale at the likes of Watchfinder and Chrono24.

Luminor GMT

With such deep rooted naval history, it’s no surprise that GMT functions are part and parcel of the Panerai Luminor watches portfolio. Take for example the handsome PAM 00088 Luminor GMT Automatic Acciaio model (price £6,400), which comes with a stainless steel case and which will appeal to sporty men in particular. Or also on sale is the rugged PAM 01088 watch with a vintage-like brown calf assolutamente strap (price £6,400) and also available in stainless steel.

Luminor Marina

Further riffing off the Italian Royal Navy connection is the Panerai Marina watches collection (named so for Regia Marina) of which includes the sub-seconds display and in a range of materials from stainless steel to gold, which will appeal to men in particular. A host of styles are available for sale such as the vintage-like Luminor Marina 1950 3 Days Automatic Titanio model (price £6,800) in titanium that displays the hours, minutes, small seconds and date. Or a more bold, modern model is the Luminor Marina 1950 America’s Cup 3 Days Automatic Acciaio (price £6,900) in stainless steel.