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Christmas gifts - Great value watches: under CHF 5,000

Christmas gifts Great value watches: under CHF 5,000

Even under the symbolic 5,000-franc threshold you’ll find many of the biggest names in watchmaking. The choice is huge, varied and prestigious.

The watch market is structured by price segment. Above the CHF 2,000 threshold you start to see the appearance of watches in exclusive categories and from prestigious brands. Climbing further up towards the CHF 5,000 mark, you are in the biggest, most diverse and most hotly contested price segment of all. Almost all the big names in watchmaking are here, with the exception of the purely high-mech brands.

The choice is accordingly vast, in both men’s and women’s models, and there is a plethora of tempting offers. One of the most interesting options for women is the Classic 28 mm by Chopard. This diminutive quartz watch, with a gold case (including the caseback) and a classically elegant dial (as its name would suggest), is one of the best-value gold watches available, and it doesn’t skimp on the precious metal. Another possibility is the Bulgari Lucea 28 mm, whose steel bracelet is the result of an unprecedented amount of work. Its polished, curved links arranged like overlapping scales, as well as its sunburst dial, make this watch stand out from the crowd.

Chopard Classic 28 mm or rose

The sportier Admiral’s Cup Legend by Corum also exists in a 32 mm diameter for women. Its mother-of-pearl dial features the twelve pennants that are a signature of the Admiral’s Cup line, in an upmarket “sport chic” version with rose gold bezel. Staying with the sporty chic aesthetic, Louis Vuitton’s new Fifty Five in a 36 mm version is an excellent choice. The silver monochrome elegance of this all-steel watch is accentuated by the green touches on its cutout hands. The watch is meticulously executed with numerous refined details, and the added advantage of an automatic movement.

Louis Vuitton Fifty Five 36 mm

Where men’s watches are concerned, automatic is definitely the way to go. At this price point, it’s even possible to get hold of a complication or two, or a manufacture movement, as is the case with Frédérique Constant. The Geneva watchmaker has always endeavoured to provide its in-house calibres at an accessible price. The Classic Manufacture has a refined aesthetic with delicate Roman numerals and a deep black dial. The Ronde Croisière by Cartier also comes with the in-house automatic 1847MC calibre. It represents a significant gesture from the luxury jeweller, particularly in its steel version, which combines a black dial with gold accents. This sporty and affordable watch benefits from all the attention to detail that has helped to cement Cartier’s watchmaking reputation over recent years.

Montre Ronde Croisière de Cartier

Looking at complications, Montblanc brings its aggressive pricing to the Heritage Chronométrie Dual Time, with two time zones and date and an impeccably understated dial. But at CHF 5,000 and even less, there are already quite a few chronographs to be found. This is the core domain of companies such as Bell & Ross, whose BR126 Aéronavale ticks all the boxes: automatic chronograph, royal blue sunburst dial, universal diameter, meticulous finishing, cool name. IWC has just redefined its pricing targets, and the new Pilot’s Watch Automatic 36 is its best-value proposition. Functional to the point of being utilitarian, readable, even spartan, this small-diameter pilot’s watch is designed to fit small wrists, but wears equally well on a larger frame.

IWC Montre D'aviateur Automatic 36

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For Bell & Ross, each detail has a specific meaning and function: functionality is key, and minimalism – dispensing with superfluous ornamental details in favour of essential aspects – is vital.

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Bulgari has its own clear definition of excellence, which involves the perfect balance between design, added-value, quality of its products and its worldwide service. In the case of Bulgari...

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Characterised by audacity and inventiveness, Cartier’s watchmaking history reflects a unique state of mind: “jeweller of kings and king of jewellers”. Its renown is bound up in the tradition of...

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Maison Chopard epitomises the alliance between watchmaking and jewellery. It has always known how to meet the expectations of its day, relying on four essential values: expertise, tradition,...

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Corum takes aesthetic daring to the heights of technical perfection. Through a number of collections, drawing on the fundamentals of traditional watchmaking, the manufacture continues to pursue its...

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Frederique Constant has made a successful business out of offering affordable luxury, experiencing growth rates well above the industry average. The owners have a clear mission to make fine...

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With a clear emphasis on technology and development, IWC Schaffhausen has been manufacturing timepieces of lasting value since 1868. Its philosophy, based on a passion for watchmaking, aims to...

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True to its founding spirit, Louis Vuitton makes watches that combine excellence, innovation and originality for the benefit of people who love travel and adventure. The watchmakers of La Fabrique...

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Synonymous with excellence in craftsmanship and design, Montblanc has been pushing the boundaries of innovation ever since the Maison first revolutionized the culture of writing in 1906.

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