Rolex, Patek Philippe, Cartier… What are the watches worn by the royal family?
When it comes to timekeeping, the Royal Family knows how to do it in style. Considering that every second of this family is managed by a program with perfect punctuality, the value of the hours they own increases even more. And with many of their timepieces being classics, the entire royal family could be the most famous horologists (Science of Time) in the world.
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Let's look at this magnificent and eye-catching collection together.
Queen Elizabeth’s Collection:
The Queen is truly a watch collector aficionado. By some estimates, she’d said to have at least 14 timepieces in her collection, many of them from the likes of Patek Philippe and Jaeger-LeCoultre, whose Calibre 101 she famously wore on the day of her coronation in 1953.
Developed in the Twenties, that watch is still considered to contain the world’s smallest mechanical movement. The Queen previously owned a Vacheron Constantin, which she gifted to Lady Diana after her marriage to Prince Charles.
There’s also an Omega Ladymatic in Her Majesty's collection, which she has owned since the early Seventies, and a Patek Philippe Golden Ellipse – a watch that also counts Canadian rapper Drake among its fans.
Rest in peace!
King III. Charles’s Collection:
Like his mother, King III. Charles is an avid watch collector. The Prince of Wales also ticks the Cartier, Jaeger-LeCoultre, and Patek Philippe boxes (no fewer than three times for the latter), but also favors Breguet, Hamilton, and Parmigiani.
Barely a sapling by Swiss watchmaker standards, Parmigiani was founded in 1996 and its rare Fleurier Toric with a gold case and black leather strap has been Charles’ watch of choice for the past several years.
The Prince of Wales’ watch collection also features a custom Breguet gifted to him by the company as a 60th birthday present, a Patek Philippe Disco Volante owned since he was young, a Hamilton RAF Pilot’s Chronograph received in the early Seventies while training as a jet pilot, and a Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso.
Princess Diana’s Collection:
Princess Diana also held an impressive watch collection. We have already covered the Cartier Tank Francaise now worn by Meghan Markle, but Diana also had a second Cartier Tank, this one on an alligator strap.
Diana also wore a diamond-set 1947, Vacheron Constantin, gifted to her by the Queen, and a gold Patek Philippe given to her by Prince Charles. Diana famously wore both her Patek Philippe and that of her husband, on the same wrist, to bring good luck to the Prince of Wales during his polo matches in the 1980s.
The Duke of Cambridge, Prince William’s Collection:
Watch-collecting seemingly doesn’t extend to the family’s younger generations, with Prince William wearing his Omega Seamaster Professional 300M Mid-Size for every occasion.
The watch was a gift from his mother and features on the Duke of Cambridge’s wrist at every kind of event, from his wedding to Kate Middleton to the recent
No Time To Die premiere.
The Duke of Sussex, Prince Harry’s Collection:
William’s brother Harry has been known to wear a couple of different watches over the years. First is his limited-edition Rolex Explorer II, which was part of a special order of 48 examples given to members of his Apache attack helicopter regiment.
The original Explorer was created by Rolex to celebrate Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay becoming the first men to reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1953.
Prince Harry also wears a special version of Breitling Aerospace Avantage, also presented to Apache pilots who have flown in combat missions. The dial features an illustration of an Apache helicopter at the 3 o’clock position and the Army Air Corps Wings at 9 o’clock.
Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton’s Collection:
The Duchess of Cambridge is the epitome of style and class, which reflects in her taste in classic watches.
Despite the Duchess only ever being spotted wearing a 33mm Cartier Ballon Bleu wristwatch given to her by Prince William, the piece effortlessly ties in with her sapphire engagement ring.
Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle’s Collection:
The Duchess of Sussex owns a pair of Cartier Tank watches. The first is her own, a two-tone example bought while she was starring in the Suits TV show and with the message “To MM, from MM” engraved on the case back. The same watch is worn by her Suits character, Rachel Zane.
Meghan Markle’s second Cartier Tank previously belonged to Princess Diana. The story goes that it was originally Prince William who took possession of the watch after his mother’s death in 1997, before giving it to Prince Harry in exchange for what became Kate Middleton’s engagement ring.
(Source: T3.com, Watchpro.com)
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