Reis-Nichols Guide To The Best Watches And Jewelry For This Holiday Season
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Reis-Nichols Guide To The Best Watches And Jewelry For This Holiday Season

Watchonista heads to Indiana to find the best Swiss timepieces and fine jewelry.

By Josh Shanks

Our partner retailer Reis-Nichols holds a special place in my heart. Over the decades, I’ve watched as my family’s long-time jeweler turned into Central Indiana’s premier destination for timepieces and fine jewelry. Today, Reis-Nichols serves Indiana and the midwestern region with stores in Indianapolis and Greenwood, Indiana. During our recent visit, we got the chance to peruse the store and select some of our favorite items for this holiday season.

Reis-Nichols Holiday Gift Guide

With 16 watch brands to choose from, Reis-Nichols has no shortage of options regardless of budget. From Patek Philippe's high complications to well-crafted watches from Nomos Glashütte, Reis-Nichols has something for everyone.

Best Watches Under $5,000

One of the watches I was most surprised to see in Reis-Nichols' case was Tudor's Black Bay Fifty-Eight. It's nice to see the smash hit of Baselworld 2019 starting to trickle onto retailer's shelves. The version we photographed was the Fifty-Eight on a fabric strip. The most significant talking point regarding the new Fifty-Eight is the slimmed-down proportions of this piece. At just 11.9mm thick, the Fifty-Eight is 19% slimmer than its predecessor, the Black Bay. This 39mm piece is priced at only $3,300 and available at Reis-Nichols.

Up next is Nomos Glashütte’s reference 181, the Tangente neomatik 41 Update. A refreshing update to the brand’s Tangente collection. This 41mm stainless steel piece features a unique date window placed on the outer perimeter of the dial. Two red markers frame the date in an elegant yet sleek fashion. Priced at $4,100, the Nomos Glashütte Tangente neomatik 41 Update is a remarkable value considering the level of craftsmanship and complications within.

Lastly, as 2019 is the year of the Spitfire, IWC Schaffhausen’s Automatic Spitfire made our list of top watches under $5,000. Priced at $4,900, this bronze cased three-hander represents the entry point to IWC’s Spitfire collection. Featuring a dark hunter green dial with a splash of color at six o'clock, this automatic Spitfire is a sure-fire hit for the aviation enthusiast in your life.

Battle Of The Sub $10,000 Chronographs

Being that Indianapolis is the Racing Capital of The World, it's only fitting that we pitted three of our favorite chronographs against each other. Reis-Nichols had plenty of options to choose from, but we ended up choosing three of Switzerland’s most renowned chronograph manufacturers.

Straight from TAG Heuer’s heritage department, the recently re-issued Autavia is a modern revision of the classic Autavia Chronograph. You may have spotted a vintage version of this piece on the big screen this year with the movie Ford vs. Ferrari (read HERE). Luckily, you don't need an IndyCar sponsorship to afford this piece. Priced at $5,300, the TAG Heuer Heritage Autavia boasts an in-house Heuer 02 movement and a vintage vibe that harkens back to the time when the Indianapolis Speedway was paved with bricks.

Made for pilots of the sky and the track, IWC Schaffhausen's Pilot's Watch Chronograph is a compelling purchase. We chose a special blue dial variant from Reis-Nichols' impressive display of IWC timepieces. Priced at $6,250, this chronograph looks excellent on the included stainless-steel bracelet or aged leather strap.

Back when racing legend Jim Clark dominated the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, he wore an early example of a Breitling chronograph wristwatch. Today, Breitling’s Premier B01 Chronograph takes inspiration from the dual-color chronographs of yesteryear. Renowned for their highly contrasting dials and high legibility, our favorite example within Breitling's Premier line has to be this Premier B01 Chronograph. Featuring the sought-after white dial with contrasting black subdials (aka Panda Dial), this watch is a surefire hit of 2019. Priced at $8,400 and available on a luxurious black leather alligator strap.

Aspirational wristwear

One of the best things about Reis-Nichols is their no-hassle approach to sales. BJ Nichols and his team of trained specialists have gone out of their way to construct a warm and welcoming boutique feel to both of their Indianapolis locations. Whether you’re buying a birthday gift or taking the leap and browsing their engagement rings, Reis-Nichols staff make you feel at home regardless of budget.

And speaking of budget, some of our favorite pieces can be found in Reis-Nichol’s dedicated Rolex and Patek Philippe salons. We were impressed by the number of pieces in both of the prestigious brand’s salons.

While supplies of Patek Philippe's stainless-steel pieces are constrained, the brand had plenty of complicated timepieces on display at Reis-Nichols. The now sold-out ref. 5200G Gondola 8 Day would have to be the most unique piece on offer at Reis-Nichols. This $59,400 tonneau-shaped novelty boasts a massive eight days of power reserve and an art deco-inspired case shape. Perfect for a black-tie gala at Indianapolis' Black Iris Estate.

To compound the high level of watchmaking on offer at Reis-Nichols, Patek Philippe’s sought after ref. 5320G Perpetual Calendar fits the bill for a classical reinterpretation of what the Genevan brand has become renowned for. Luminescent numerals with gold settings are applied to a creamy dial, which lends a graceful look for all ages. Priced at $82,800, this perpetual calendar is a compelling buy, given the relative scarcity of this piece.

Last, but certainly not least, is the mighty crown. As one of Indiana's few Rolex retailers, Reis-Nichols has an impressive array of Rolex timepieces. From heavy metal hitters like a yellow gold Submariner to elegant lady DateJusts, the selection of Rolex on offer at Reis-Nichols ensures you’ll find an eternal timepiece for yourself or your loved one.

Just Because: Top Jewelry Selections

In addition to an impressive array of fine timepieces, Reis-Nichols has an ever-expanding assortment of fine jewelry. From jewelry stalwarts like David Yurman, John Hardy, and Roberto Coin to pieces masterfully crafted in-house at Reis-Nichols workshops.

Later in the day, we took a walk to Carmel, Indiana’s Christkindlmarkt for mulled wine and raclette. David Yurman’s Solari collection was the perfect pairing to a brisk day at this German-inspired marketplace.

When one thinks jewelry, the iconic Maison of Cartier can’t be far behind. Who wouldn’t want to find a red box under the tree this holiday? Luckily, Reis-Nichols has a wide assortment of Cartier timepieces on display at their Indianapolis boutique. The Cartier Tank always impresses, while Cartier’s Panthère has been a runaway hit in 2019. Either way, whether you’re shopping for him or her, Reis-Nichols has something for everyone.

How To Visit

Reis-Nichols has two convenient Indianapolis locations. Their marque store at Keystone at the Crossing (3535 E. 86th Street) serves as the cornerstone to past, present, and future of the storied Indianapolis retailer. A sister location in Greenwood, Indiana (789 US 31 North), offers a local approach for customers on Indianapolis' west side.

(Photography by Liam O'Donnell)

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