Our Ultimate Guide to Diamond and Gemstone Watches

Our Ultimate Guide to Diamond and Gemstone Watches

Timeless and elegant – nothing says luxury like a diamond or gemstone watch.

Whether these timepieces have sparked a desire in you to own one or you simply find yourself curious and intrigued, this is your guide!

The World of Luxury Diamond and Gemstone Watches

Diamonds and gemstones have always held a special allure, serving as aesthetic accessories.

The incorporation of diamonds in watchmaking can be traced back to the 19th century. The first decorated wristwatch in history was crafted in 1868 by Swiss watchmaker Patek Philippe for Countess Koscowicz of Hungary.

This introduction of jewel-adorned watches caused a craze. Wristwatches quickly became an exquisite piece of jewellery, with their timekeeping function taking a secondary role.

During the 1920s, wristwatches began adopting more intricate designs with ornate dials. It wasn’t long before diamonds found their way onto these timepieces.

By the 1950s, watches featuring dials adorned with precious stones instead of traditional indexes became popular. Rolex, recognising the draw of diamonds, introduced the Day-Date 1804 in 1956. Piaget and other brands also embraced the resurgence of women’s jewellery watches, creating pieces that continue to wow with their stone settings.

By the 1970s, Middle Eastern rulers commissioned watches embellished with precious stones, some of which command astronomical prices at auctions today. Rolex’s “Octopus” and Patek Philippe’s unique creations were among the notable pieces that catered to their extravagant tastes.

An Introduction to Diamonds and Gemstones in Luxury Watches

While diamonds have always been a classic choice for that extra touch of sparkle, other gemstones such as rubies, sapphires, and emeralds have also made their mark.

Diamond luxury watches

Diamonds are the crown jewels of luxury watches, coveted for their beauty and timeless allure. Durable, beautiful, and unmatched sparkle are all the qualities that make them so desirable.

Diamond Watch: Rolex Sky-Dweller Meteorite Baguette Dial with a white gold bezel set with calibrated baguette diamonds

There are two types of diamonds available today: natural diamonds and lab-grown diamonds.

When it comes to evaluating the quality of diamonds, we rely on the 4Cs: Cut, Colour, Clarity, and Carat.

  • Cut: The quality of the diamond’s angles, proportions, facets, and finishing details. Examples of different cuts include the round brilliant, the princess cut, and the emerald cut.
  • Colour: The colour grading of a diamond determines how colourless it is. The most valuable are those that exhibit exceptional colourless.
  • Clarity: The presence of inclusions and blemishes within a diamond can affect the stone’s appearance and transparency. Diamonds with higher clarity grades are more valuable.
  • Carat: This is the unit of measurement used to determine the weight of a diamond. Larger diamonds generally have a higher carat weight and are often more valuable.

At Global Boutique, we offer an exquisite range of diamond watches. Take, for instance, the Rolex Sky-Dweller, a real showstopper which we recently sold. With its 42 mm white gold case and a bezel adorned with calibrated baguette diamonds, it exudes elegance from every angle.

Sapphires in luxury watches

Sapphire, a gemstone that boasts impressive hardness comparable to diamond, has long been a favourite gem for watchmakers. It’s commonly used as a crystal screen over watch dials thanks to its scratch-resistant properties.

Over time, watch brands have been using sapphires beyond the traditional round cases, embracing the stone as accents on dials, bezels, and crowns in various cuts.

Sapphires can be found in a wide variety of colours, from deep blue to pink to yellow – including shades that resemble other authentic gemstones.

Diamond and Gemstone Watch: Rolex GMT Master II with calibrated cut diamonds, sapphires and rubies

One timepiece in our portfolio that showcases the beauty of sapphires is the Rolex GMT-Master II. The 24-hour rotatable bezel is adorned with sapphires, as well as rubies and diamonds. Completing the ensemble is an 18kt rose gold Oyster bracelet.

Ruby luxury watches

Rubies add an eye-catching element to luxury watches with their vibrant red colour. Belonging to the same family as sapphires, rubies are slightly softer but equally captivating.

Rubies can be found in different sizes as hour markers, crown accents, or details on bezels and dials. Their presence not only adds a pop of colour but also enhances the value of the watch as they’re one of the most sought-after precious gems.

One example from our collection is the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ruby, showcasing the beauty of the gemstone in a sleek and stylish design. The iconic embossed black dial features ruby hour markers while the octagonal bezel boasts 32 cushion-cut rubies adorning its edges.

Emeralds in luxury watches

The emerald is another highly sought-after gemstone. Their mesmerising green hue brings a unique charm to any watch they adorn.

Emeralds are usually cut in a way that creates parallel rows of facets, giving them a unique appearance.

One luxury watch that truly embraces the beauty of emeralds is the Patek Philippe Grand Complications 6300/403G. It features an exquisite white gold case adorned with 118 baguette-cut emeralds and 291 baguette-cut diamonds.

And to complement this extraordinary watch, Patek Philippe has also included white gold cufflinks set with a row of baguette-cut emeralds.

How to Care for Diamond and Gemstone Watches

Taking care of your luxury watch is essential to ensure its longevity and pristine condition, especially when it’s one adorned with expensive stones.

Regular cleaning and maintenance:

  • Use a soft, lint-free cloth to gently wipe away dirt.
  • Create a mild soap solution with lukewarm water and use a soft brush to clean the gem-encrusted areas.
  • Rinse the watch with clean water and dry it with a soft cloth.
  • Have your watch regularly checked by a professional watchmaker.

Storing your luxury watch:

  • Store in a dedicated watch box or case.
  • Use a soft, cushioned watch roll or compartments to keep your watch safe.
  • Keep it away from direct sunlight, extreme temperatures, and high humidity.

Wearing your luxury watch with care:

  • Avoid wearing your watch during activities that could potentially damage it.
  • Be cautious when handling the clasp or buckle to prevent scratching the watch face or bracelet.
  • Periodically check for loose gems by gently shaking or tapping your watch. When in doubt, have it professionally checked.

Buying Diamond and Gemstone Watches – What You Need to Know

To ensure you make the right choice, here are a few steps you should take when shopping for a luxury watch:

  1. Research: Research the brand, movement type, style, features, and price range of luxury watches. Read customer reviews and compare prices to find a timepiece that ticks all your boxes.
  2. Watch materials: Choose a material that aligns with your style, durability requirements, and maintenance preferences.
  3. Watch movements: Luxury watches mainly come in two types of movements: quartz and manual. A quartz watch is battery-operated and usually available at a lower price point. Manual watches offer intricate craftsmanship but require regular winding.
  4. Watch features: Consider the features you desire in a watch. Maybe you want a chronograph for added functionality, water resistance for your active lifestyle, or a perpetual calendar.
  5. Set your budget: Luxury diamond and gemstone watches come with a significant price tag, so it’s essential to establish a clear budget before you start shopping. You can even explore pre-owned luxury watches as these have been expertly authenticated and often come at a fraction of the retail price.
  6. Authenticity: Whether you’re buying a pre-owned or new watch, make sure you’re dealing with authorised dealers that are directly affiliated with the brand or independent dealers that specialise in luxury watches.

Authenticity and Certification of Diamond and Gemstone Watches

As we’ve shown above, buying a luxury diamond or gemstone watch goes beyond simply choosing one that catches your eye. The most important factor to consider is whether the watch comes with a certificate of authenticity (COA).

A COA can be a seal, sticker, or a small slip of paper, and it holds great significance. This document serves as proof of the watch’s origin, model, and sometimes even its service history.

Every COA is signed by a reputable appraiser or watch expert who possesses the necessary qualifications.

Diamond Watch: Patek Philippe Aquanaut 5268/200R with a bezel housing 48 diamonds

Are Diamond and Gemstone Watches a Good Investment?

Absolutely, when done wisely.

While people often buy luxury watches for their style and status, some watches can also appreciate in value over time, making them a potential financial investment.

The best brands to invest in are Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Audemars Piguet – all of which we offer at Global Boutique. These watch brands are known for their prestige, exclusivity, and craftsmanship.

Naturally, there are a few factors to keep in mind when maximising the investment potential of a luxury watch.

Do you want my advice? Don’t wear the timepiece and retain the full paperwork and box. While not wearing it may seem counterintuitive, this helps preserve the value. The accompanying paperwork and original box also showcase credibility and authenticity, making it more appealing to potential future buyers.

Final Thoughts

Diamond and gemstone watches have always been beloved in the world of luxury timepieces. And they’re not going out of style anytime soon!

A luxury watch embellished with precious stones will forever be a visual feast for the eyes and a valuable investment.

If you’re in search of your first or next luxury watch, look no further than Global Boutique. Explore our curated selection of luxury watch brands and find an authentic timepiece that you can be proud of. And if we currently don’t offer what you’re looking for, contact us via WhatsApp or through our Watch Sourcing Service. We have an extensive Network of watch afficionados and can source most luxury watches for our clients.

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