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Dress to Impress: Must-Have Dress Watches This 2024

The majority of watch enthusiasts believe that a classic dress watch is an essential component of any collection, regardless of whether it is worn every day to the office or only on special occasions. Dress watches are among the most sought-after kinds, along with sports watches, therefore we've put together a list of the top dress watches that provide quality, value, and style in every price range. Of course, we set some guidelines when compiling this, so this list is by no means all-inclusive.

Timex Marlin

Timex has been making low-cost, mass-produced quartz watches for decades, but with the launch of the Marlin Collection, the brand has entered the mechanical market. The 34mm casing of the Gentleman's Hand-Wound features a single silver dial design that draws inspiration from Timex's early 1960s catalog. There is also a bigger 40mm automatic movement variant that offers more dial variations, including striking "Cali Dials." Timex provides no information about the mechanical movement specifications, other from mentioning that they are supplied by a Chinese provider. This is understandable considering the product's accessible $199 and $249 price tags, which make it one of the less expensive mechanical choices available.

Orient Bambino

Orient is a genuine gateway brand with a value-packed selection that extends beyond tool watches. The Bambino is a reasonably priced mechanical dress watch with good specifications and a casing that is both current and appropriate. The internal, in-house produced F6724 caliber provides the wearer with hacking capabilities and a 40-hour power reserve at 3 Hz. The white dial is covered in a domed mineral crystal; although a sapphire crystal would have been lovely, at this price point the trade-off for an in-house movement is justified.

Bulova Commodore Limited Edition

The commemorative John Bulova limited edition line from Bulova has produced some surprisingly outstanding dress watches with a retro vibe that are Swiss built and have excellent Sellita SW200-1 movements. Every model has an own style, but none is quite as stylish as the Commodore with the glossy black dial. The wire lugs draw attention to a particularly well-proportioned and well-finished case, making it stand out from the other commemorative models in this collection. Carefully chosen sapphire crystals are used for the dial side and the partially exhibited back. Just 350 pieces worldwide are available.

Seiko Presage SRPB43

Few manufactures provide timepieces under $500 with the same level of quality and affordability as Seiko. The Presage SRPB43, with its eye-catching dial, superior workmanship, and robust automatic 4R35 movement with hand-winding and hacking second functions, is the pinnacle of quality and price. Visible through the exhibition case back, this movement has a power reserve of about 40 hours when fully wound. The 50m water resistant certification here highlights Seiko's commitment to creating a dress watch in this price range with useful features for use outside of the office.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Automatic

The Hamilton Jazzmaster series offers a wide variety of fashionable watch options, including quartz and mechanical models. With its eye-catching range of dial variations—from the elegant tuxedo black design to more business casual blue, beige, or silver variants featuring Roman numerals or baton hour markers—the Jazzmaster Automatic offers a contemporary take of the classic three-handed design. This collection includes the Powermatic 80-based H-10 movement, which beats at 3 Hz and has a hacking second, a date, and an 80-hour battery reserve. This dress watch, which also boasts 50 meters of water resistance and sapphire crystals on the front and back, is among the best deals on the market.

Tissot Le Locle Powermatic 80

Although the Tissot Le Locle Powermatic 80 and the Hamilton Jazzmaster Automatic have similar base movements, the Tissot's appearance is considerably more understated and traditional. With a 39.3mm diameter and a just 9.8mm thickness, it is marginally smaller than Hamilton, resulting in a more sleek design. Among the alternatives are the silver dialed model with stamped pyramid texture and Roman numerals; there is also a two-tone steel and gold model. At $575, you still get the sapphire crystal, a reasonable 30-meter water resistance, and a butterfly folding clasp—features absent from the more costly Hamilton.

Frederique Constant Classic Index Automatic

A straightforward dress watch made in Switzerland, the Frederique Constant Classic Index Automatic is available in a range of colors and dial designs. One of its dressiest models features a formal black dial with sword-style hands and stick markers. It also has a respectable amount of lume, which is a feature that dress watches frequently, for some reason, lack. With the steadfastly dependable Sellita SW200-1 caliber powering it, it has all the bells and whistles you'd expect, including a date, a hacking second, and hand-winding capabilities. Here, sapphire glass is standard, and the leather band is of higher quality than most others in this price range.

Longines Flagship Heritage

The first Flagship model was presented by Longines in 1957, more than 60 years ago, and its tasteful understatement has found a grateful following ever since. The Flagship is characterized by its crisp, applied "coffin-shaped" hour markers that alternate with applied Arabic numerals at the quarter-hours; its overall slender profile with faceted lugs; and its gold-tone Dauphine hands. The Longines winged-hourglass emblem is positioned at 12 o'clock, above the axis of the central hands, and is surrounded by a borderless tiny seconds subdial and a date window at 6 o'clock on the stacked dial. With a diameter of 38.5 mm and a thickness of 10.3 mm, the case houses the self-winding Longines Caliber L615 (ETA) watch, which has a power reserve of 50 hours. A medallion featuring, you guessed it, a historic naval flagship sets the robust caseback apart.

Cartier Tank Louis

There are many diverse styles that dress watches can take, and Cartier, with its iconic Tank Louis model, may be the brand that has embraced this idea the most. Even if the case is limited to precious metals, its modest dimensions lend it a timeless and subtle appeal. It fits a variety of wrist sizes comfortably, measuring 33.7 x 25.5 x 6.6 mm and being only 6.6 mm thin. The Tank Louis has a 36-hour power reserve thanks to the manual winding Caliber 8971 MC, but in the end, the movement will be overshadowed by the watch's recognizable design and name.

Omega De Ville Hour Vision


It may surprise you to learn that Omega is more than just Seamasters and Speedmasters. Don't expect something dainty, though; it provides a selection of dress watches from the De Ville series that are frequently disregarded and underestimated. This is not an inconspicuous watch; it comes with a bold 41mm stainless steel case with flared out lugs and a case thickness of roughly 13mm. To get the most out of its wearability, you will need an above average sized wrist. The Caliber 8900 has a lot going for it, including a 60 power reserve, improved antimagnetic features such a silicon hairspring for the free-sprung balance, and a METAS certified chronometer rating.

Zenith Elite Moonphase

Over time, the Zenith Elite Collection has had a number of adjustments and modifications that have elevated it to the status of a serious dress watch alternative. The design language is a contemporary take on some classic components, such as the 40mm case's overall form and the striking sunburst dial work. The ultra-thin, self-winding Elite Caliber 692 movement, which boasts a gold skeleton rotor, exquisite perlaging, and Geneva striping on its surfaces, powers this Elite Moonphase. When your gaze is diverted from the exquisite lunar phase displayed on the dial, you may view all of this through the case back.

Longines Silver Arrow

The Longines Silver Arrow is a good choice if you're looking for a Swiss dress watch from one of the most well-known mainstream luxury brands in the world with timeless vintage features. By capturing the sense of a bygone period in its dial, hour markers, and hand set, Longines truly leans into the art deco appearance of the 1950s. With just the three-hand display remaining, the date window is eliminated while maintaining the dial's symmetry. With a full three days of power reserve, the Longines L888.5 movement is pulsating inside this fairly sized watch that measures 38.5 mm by just 9.9 mm in thickness.

Vacheron Constantin Historiques Cornes de Vache

The first chronograph with a waterproof casing, the Reference 6087 by Vacheron Constantin, was introduced in 1955. It was unique in that it had lugs styled like the "horns of a cow" (cornes de vache in French). In 2015, Vacheron brought the model back to life with new movement and modern style for its Historiques collection, which was inspired by the past. Most of the unique case's details, such as the grooved crown, curved cow-horn lugs, and mushroom-shaped chronograph pushers, are historically authentic. Its diameter of 38.5 mm makes it marginally bigger than that of the earlier form, which was 35 mm. The largely period-correct dial features blued chronograph hands, attached hour indexes, and a tachymeter scale around the periphery—another remnant from the 1955 original.

Blancpain Villeret Ultraplate

The Villeret line by Blancpain is named after the Swiss village where the brand was first established in 1735 and is characterized by classical design features from bygone ages. The Villeret model line began to take shape in the 1980s and is still growing today, with a wide range of styles and intricacies. The Villeret Ultraplate subfamily's three-hand-date model is perfect for formal events. It has all the classic Villeret design elements, like an openworked sage-leaf-shaped hands, a double-stepped bezel, a central seconds hand with a "JB" counterweight (for the initials of the brand's founder, Jean-Jacques Blancpain), and applied Roman numerals for the hours on a sunray-finished dial. As implied by the name "ultra plate," which translates to "ultra flat," the watch's 40-mm rose-gold case measures a mere 8.7 mm thick. Visible through the transparent caseback, the movement is Blancpain's automatic Caliber 1151, which has a 100-hour power reserve stored in two series-coupled barrels. Another Villeret hallmark is the honeycomb motif engraved on the gold rotor of the watch.

Grand Seiko 140th Anniversary Limited Edition SLGA008

Along with a steel-cased counterpart, this rose-gold-encased timepiece commemorates the 140th anniversary of Grand Seiko's parent company, Seiko, which was founded in 1881. It is outfitted with the most recent iteration of the Seiko Spring Drive caliber. The unique, multi-textured "tree rings" wood-grain motif on its dark brown dial carries over the "Nature of Time" theme of the high-end Japanese watch brand. The 40 mm diameter case has the signature polished finish of the Zaratsu brand. The dial has classic razor-shaped hands and delicately faceted applied indexes, along with a date window set in a golden frame at three o'clock. The five-day power reserve is shown on the back side of the Spring Drive Caliber 9RA2, which is finished and hidden behind a sapphire caseback. The bridges have a frosted effect that is reminiscent of snow-covered Japanese forests.

IWC Portofino Hand Wound 8 Days

Since its 1984 introduction, IWC's exquisite Portofino line has maintained a mostly unaltered, classically modest appearance. But in 2011, the Hand Wound 8 Days model's movement received a distinctly contemporary makeover. Housemade Caliber IW59210, which beats inside the polished stainless steel 45-mm case of the watch, accumulates 192 hours of power—or eight days—inside a single, large mainspring barrel. Because of its remarkable running autonomy, the watch will continue to function even if you store it in a drawer after wearing it on a formal weekend outing and then put it back on a week later. On the large dial are polished leaf hour and minute hands, narrow bar hour markers, a small seconds sundial, and an analog hand that indicates the power reserve.


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