Since the early 1900s, Australia has been home to many watch brands that offer quality timepieces with a distinctly Australian flair. These brands have specialized in different aspects of the watch industry, from fashion watches and diving watches to aviation and marine watches while maintaining an Australian identity. The following is a look at some of the most well-known Australian watch brands.
Although Mido is not one of the more popular brands, their watches are holding their own nicely in this market. Some people might say that Mido has a sporty or rubber-ish touch to them, but this is where they could not be more wrong!
A well-crafted Mido will last you for years and if you take good care of it, would stay looking amazing for even longer. It’s hard to tell where the brand was founded because its origins go back over 100 years (in 1903 when Jacques Ketterer founded it in Switzerland).
The brand is well known for the creative and visually impressive designs that they incorporate with their watches.
# 9 Omega
Founded in 1848 by Louis Brandt, Omega has been making high-quality timepieces for over a century. The brand was named after their first-ever watch, which had “Omega” written on its dial instead of numbers.
Today, the company manufactures some of the most popular luxury watches available on the market, including both dress watches and sporty ones. In general, expect to pay around $ 10 000AUD for an authentic Omega timepiece.
Omega watches are among the most sought-after globally, especially in Australia, where they have become a staple accessory for many households from all walks of life.
# 8 Raymond Weil
The biggest watch company in Switzerland manufactures Raymond Weil watches, and their philosophy is to make luxury watches that are at the same time effortless.
When it comes to design, Rayman Weil does a great job combining sophistication with simplicity, making these timepieces extremely attractive.
The brand was created in 1976 by Raymond Weil, who has had a passion for watches all his life. If you opt for a Raymond Weil watch, expect to pay around $ 8000AUD for one of their Swiss-made models or up to $ 3500AUD if from China. These watches come with a two-year warranty and have a water resistance level of up to 50 meters (5ATM).
# 7 Stuhrling Original
Stuhrling Original makes really good quartz watches (which are superb value for money). The company makes a wide variety of mechanical automatics at reasonable prices too. They have managed to keep their prices low by owning their production facilities and doing their online business. These guys don’t waste money on overheads and the like. The quality of Stuhrling Original watches is hard to beat as you get automatic movement for less than $ 200AUD.
# 6 Mondaine
Mondaine produces a wide range of Swiss-made clocks that are really good-looking and classically designed. They have two lines, one which has a simple, clean look and the second that is digital display based (they have a lot of those with different designs). It’s easy to tell which ones they are – because there is usually only 1 or 2 in any shop. Their main line is known as “swiss railway clock,” so if you see this name on the label, it means that this particular clock comes from Mondaine. These watches are a hit with women who love the Swiss design and touch to their accessories. Most Mondaine watches cost less than $ 2500AUD or half that if they are on sale!
# 5 Grand Seiko
Grand Seiko is part of the Japanese watch company Citizen Watch Co Ltd. They produce high-quality watches and pieces (which sell for over $ 10 000AUD), first introduced in the 1960s. Each watch has its signature luster, which gives it a playful shimmering surface when the light catches it – this looks visually appealing. Grand Seiko is one of the more luxury-oriented brands to make it into this list, but you will not be disappointed when you hear that their top-end models cost anywhere between $ 6000AUD and $ 10 000AUD. These are well-made, high-quality watches with all the bells and whistles that one could expect to see in a luxury watch today. If you want to know more about the Grand Seiko range of watches, click here
# 4 Hamilton
Hamilton is an American watch company founded in 1892 by jeweler J.B. Hamilton (hence the name). They have a wide range of men’s ladies’ and unisex watches with prices ranging from $ 300AUD to around $ 800AUD for most models. The founder wanted people to appreciate the excellent craftsmanship that goes into making these timepieces which is why these watches cost what they do – as he put it, “watches should be priced according to their merits, not according to the whim of a manufacturer.” So there you have it – now you know where they get their inspiration from and why Hamilton watches are so expensive. The good news is that these guys make some decent automatic movements in-house and give five years warranty with each watch purchased.
# 3 Tissot
Tissot was founded by Charles-Felicien Tissot in 1853, who sold his first pocket watch movement just four years later after setting up shop in Le Locle, Switzerland. This company has been a part of many historical events, including World War I and II. Tissot is known for making pretty much every type of watch available today, from quartz to mechanical movements as well as solar power. Their most popular line is probably called “prima-Matic,” which has an automatic movement (with date) that costs $ 600AUD to $ 700AUD.
# 2 Seiko
Seiko means “exquisite” in Japanese; it’s a fitting name since their watches are well made. The company was founded by Kintaro Hattori back in 1881. They have been at the forefront of innovation ever since with leading technology, including the world’s first quartz wristwatch, TV watch, electric calculator watch, to name a few! They also make some cool military-issued pilot and diving watches that come in various sizes, colors, and styles. They even have a buzzsaw movement for those who want to be different (it’s not recommended, though). On top of all this, they also create higher-end pieces like Grand Seiko but more on that later. This brand is one to look out for as you will rarely meet anyone who owns a Seiko watch that wasn’t happy with their purchase.
# 1 Rolex
Rolex is the biggest luxury watch producer globally, which is why it deserves the number one spot on our list. It embodies both luxury and class – these Swiss timepieces are undoubtedly some of the best available on the market today (not to mention the most expensive). From Oyster Perpetual series to Daytona, Datejust and Day-Date Rolex make what could be considered as the best in class timepieces available today.
Nobody can afford everything that Rolex produces, but it’s a good place to start – they have something for everyone.
Australian watch brands are a great investment for any timepiece enthusiast. From the rugged, robust watches to the elegant and fashionable options, there is something for everyone in this country’s burgeoning industry.
Whether you’re looking for practicality or pure style, these local companies have what you need.