Father Figures: Finding The Perfect Watch For Dad At WEMPE Fifth Avenue
Father’s Day is June 20th, and we here at Watchonista recognize that family ties can be quite tangled. So, this year, we have assembled a list of seven watches to celebrate the father figures in your life: husbands, uncles, teachers, anyone who helped you become the person you are today.
To make honoring these men even easier, we turned to our partner retailer WEMPE Fifth Avenue, whose experts have been helping folks select special timepieces for generations. Our recommendations are our own and cover a wide range of price points, but the WEMPE team can help you with delivery, engraving, maintenance, and repairs, so you know that your gift will last.
Bonus Tip: If you’ve been procrastinating about purchasing your dad a present or have found yourself stonewalled by waiting lists, the trick to getting a great gift before June 20th is to make an in-person visit to WEMPE Fifth Avenue (no appointment required), book a virtual appointment, or contact them by phone or email.
For the New Dad
If it’s your man’s first year as a father, why not mark the milestone with a true birth year watch from the legendary brand Jaeger-LeCoultre? And because we foresee repeated readings of “Goodnight Moon” in your future, we thought that the Master Control Calendar would be a very meaningful selection.
The Master Control collection is focused on simple aesthetics, understated technology, and long-term performance. In short, it is designed to be an heirloom piece that you can wear every day until it’s time to hand it off to the next generation.
The Master Control Calendar has lots of complications, including day and Month windows along with a red-tipped date hand and a 6 o’clock moonphase display. And as a fellow who is about to spend a lot of time in parks and playgrounds, this not-too-big, not-too-small 40mm stainless steel watch powered by the 866 automatic manufacture caliber is reliable, meaning they will never be late for a playdate. Plus, coming on a casual brown calfskin strap, he will be the style-envy of the playgroup.
At $11,900. the price is also comfortable for a timepiece with this many complications.
For the Granddad
A fine watch doesn’t have to be viewed as an inheritance. You can also honor the generations that came before you with a timepiece from the Longines Spirit collection. This family of watches is inspired by adventurers of the past – people who explored the land, water, air, and the limits of human endurance.
This understated, everyday sports watch may be an homage to heroes of the past, but the Longines Spirit collection is packed with the latest technology. The 40mm case, made of premium stainless steel, houses the sophisticated and extremely precise COSC-certified L888.4 caliber. This automatic movement with a silicon hairspring offers a power reserve of 64 hours while ticking at 25,200 vph.
Any example from the Spirit family is a wonderful example of chronometer, but we like the 40mm stainless steel model that comes on a brown leather strap. Priced at $2,150, it’s a great gift for a man who’s been around the world and seen some things but is still ready for fresh adventures!
For the Sport Chic Dad
Luxury sports watches first made their mark in the 1970s and 1980s – back when your pop was still a pup. With its signature octagonal bezel, Clous de Paris textured dial, and integrated metal strap Girard-Perregaux’s legendary Laureato is one of the most instantly recognizable timepieces of that era – and it’s still a champion today.
The reason this sport-chic classic has endured over the decades is that it’s also rugged. For your father, we recommend the Laureato Automatic 42 Ref. 81010-11-634-11A. Aesthetically, the 42mm stainless steel case captures the mood of the 1970s. At the same time, it includes more modern developments like water resistance to ten bars, a sapphire crystal caseback, and the automatic manufacture caliber GP01800-0008 with a power reserve of 54 hours (the original housed a quartz movement).
And its $12,200 price tag is not out of the ballpark for a classic haute horology piece.
For the Traveling Dad
Some papas are rolling stones. It doesn’t mean they love us any less, just that they have to hit the road to pay the bills. For the traveling man in your life, we recommend the IWC Big Pilot's Watch 43. It is the ultimate way to say: "No matter how far away you roam, I am always thinking of you.”
This iteration of IWC’s iconic aviator watch uses contemporary design language to express elegance. The three-handed, blue-dialed watch has a generous 43mm stainless steel case that is water-resistant to ten bars and a striking cone-shaped crown. Plus, its stainless steel bracelet is part of the new EasX-CHANGE system, so your frequently flying father need only pack one watch and a selection of other watchbands to switch up his look on the go.
Powered by the manufacture caliber 82100, this self-winding watch guarantees that he won’t miss a connection. And priced at $9,350, it’s a luxury within reach.
For the Square Dad
You grimace at his jokes and get a little embarrassed by his Michael Jordan-style baggy jean shorts, but you love him no matter what. If your dad is a little old-fashioned, why not gift him with a watch that’s cool and classic, like, for instance, the Cartier Santos Dumont?
Louis Cartier created the original Santos de Cartier for Alberto Santos-Dumont, a dapper Brazilian socialite and aviation pioneer way back in 1904. Today, its unmistakable styling is appropriate in any non-sporting social situation, and the iconic design will never go out of style (unlike that Members Only jacket he keeps wearing).
We selected the large 31.4 x 43.5mm stainless steel and rose gold model for your square dad because it’s a no-fuss timepiece. Its quartz mechanism keeps this watch a simple time-only affair, so even absent-minded fathers needn’t worry about remembering to wind it. This sturdy movement also means that the watch is priced at a sensible $5,600.
For the Fun Dad
Fathers with big personalities will appreciate the boldness of the Breitling Endurance Pro. With its colorful Breitlight carbon fiber composite case (we’ve picked orange, but it also comes in red and yellow), this 44mm timepiece comes with a lot of horological bells and whistles, such as a chronograph and a pulsometer.
Another thing that makes the Endurance Pro so appealing is its SuperQuartz movement. Designed for professional athletes, weekend warriors will have a good time bragging about its unique features, including its natural rubber strap. It’s fun to look at, extremely accurate, and accessibly priced at $3,150.
For the Can-Do Dad
We have always admired great problem-solvers, people capable of making their own hand-pulled noodles, brew their own beer, or take apart and reassemble a motorcycle. They taught us to value the effort that goes into making nice things, and we’d like to thank the problem-solving dads out there for sharing their knowledge and expertise with a carefully crafted timepiece from NOMOS Glashütte.
Based in Germany, NOMOS specializes in artisanal manual-winding and automatic mechanical watches. Our favorite for creative dads is the Tangente Neomatik 41 Update.
The clean aesthetic of this timepiece will charm anyone who appreciates a minimalist style. Gearheads will love the innovative display featuring a ring running around the edge of the dial that bears two red dots to frame the date.
Powered by the in-house DUW 6101 caliber, its 40.5mm stainless steel case is only 7.9mm thick, meaning the Tangente Neomatik 41 Update never gets in the way of getting the job done. And priced at $4,100, it’s another great value proposition.