WatchBox regularly analyzes and discusses market value – in the office, on our shows, and in everyday conversation with clients and collectors. This episode of After Hours is resolutely not about that. Today we are shining a spotlight on wristwatches that hold great sentimental value. Join Armand Johnston, Alaina Lackman, and Mike Manjos as they discuss watches treasured throughout the generations of their families and pieces that have marked special moments throughout their own lives.
Armand kicks off this edition of After Hours with his grandfather’s Omega Seamaster DeVille in hand, passed down to him by his father when he turned 18. This watch is both a gentleman’s piece and a utilitarian instrument, well-worn by both Armand and his grandfather, as evidenced by the signs of wear which add so much character. Armand also brought out his Seiko Orange Monster, a watch that has cataloged much wrist-time throughout the years. Can you imagine the conversation generations from now, referencing this bright, bright watch as “my grandfather’s watch”?
Alaina discusses two classics from her family tree; a Cartier Tank recently passed down to her from her mom, and her dad’s Submariner 1680, purchased years ago when he began his career as a dentist. The Cartier is petite and elegant, beloved for its timeless style. It will always be thought of as a gift from her dad to her mom with love; the embodiment of a sentimental watch. The Submariner is still her dad’s daily wear, and as discussed, it is “beautifully beat up.” It’s funny – the first time you get a scratch on a new watch it may bring a tear to your eye – but as the years pass, signs of wear represent chapters of life, adventures, battle scars, all adding to the invaluable quality.
Mike rounds out the conversation with two special pieces. First up is his dad’s Movado Datron chronograph with an original El Primero movement. You may recall from other episodes, Mike’s dad was a watchmaker and watches were always a part of his family’s story. This was the piece he recalls seeing every night at the dinner table as he was growing up. The second watch Mike shared was in fact, his first Rolex, and it commemorates hard work and achievement. Back in the day, and for a very limited period of time, there was something called the Rolex Crown Club. As an official Rolex dealer, if you sold a certain number of Rolex watches, you could earn a watch – and as you will see from the caseback engraving, this was a crowning achievement.