Discover the legacy of Audemars Piguet, a Swiss watchmaker crafting exquisite timepieces since 1875. Find your perfect match among these 8 stunning models.
Founded by Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet, Audemars Piquet has been crafting some of the best Audemars Piquet watches since 1875, standing as a leading Swiss watchmaker. Located in the heart of Switzerland’s Vallée de Joux region, it is one of the few family-owned timepiece manufacturers in the country. This corporate independence has helped Audemars Piquet remain a fiercely independent and defiantly unique presence in the world of luxury wristwatches.
Audemars Piquet has long taken advantage of the rich iron ore of the Vallée de Joux, but the region’s most lasting impact on the company has to be the “vibrant views” that it offers of the “clear night sky.” Quite literally, many of Audemars Piquet’s groundbreaking and avant-garde watches include skeleton features that leave their intricate internal movements and mechanisms in clear view.
While the entire Audemars Piguet collection maintains exceptional value, the following models are particularly noteworthy, ranking among the best Audemars Piquet watches for investment and style in 2024.
Read on for a brief overview of each Audemars Piguet watch listed above.
The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak is often referred to as the company’s “best-known and perhaps most collectible watch” and “in a word, a masterpiece.” Over the years, the origin story of this watch has become almost as legendary as its performance and style.
The day before the highly influential Swiss Watch Show of 1971, Audemars Piguet’s managing director Georges Golay asked designer Gérald Genta to do the impossible: create the blueprint for a new watch overnight. To make things even harder, Golay insisted that the watch must be stylish yet democratic, innovative yet aesthetically pleasing. And it must have a case of steel to make it practical for heavy, everyday wear.
The next day, Genta presented polished final sketches for the Royal Oak, complete with its distinctive octagonal watch bezel and visible screws. When Audemars Piguet ultimately released the Royal Oak in 1972, it became the world’s first luxury sports watch to be made of stainless steel. The dial on this watch, with its “Clous de Paris” guilloché motif, is not regarded as one of the most iconic dials in horological history. Gracing the wrists of many a trendsetter over the years, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak has garnered widespread acclaim for its outstanding, high-end, in-house mechanical movements as well as its exceptional beveling, polishing, engraving, and general finishing craftsmanship.
In 1993, Audemars Piguet released a larger, bolder, sturdier, and sportier version of its classic Royal Oak under the name Royal Oak Offshore. In addition to increasing the case size of the original Royal Oak line by several millimeters on average (some Royal Oak Offshore models exceed 44 millimeters), the company has offered the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore in some modern, high-performance material variations such as ceramic and forged carbon.
The Offshore line also features far more prominent and easier to manipulate crowns and pushers. For all these reasons and more, the Royal Oak Offshore is quite popular among extreme athletes and other adventurers.
Furthermore, the Offshore takes the iconic “Clous de Paris” guilloché motif of the first Royal Oak and literally expands it. While Audemars Piguet labeled the original Royal Oak guilloché a “petite tapisserie,” the company has manufactured watches with dramatically larger decorative patterns. The “mega tapisserie” of the Royal Oak Offshore is the largest that Audemars Piguet offers. The squares on this design motif are more than double the size of the “grande tapisserie” and feature a noticeably glossier finish.
Few watches are more eye-catching than the Audemars Piguet Millenary. Adjectives such as “bold” and “innovative” simply fail to capture the unconventional and cutting-edge design choices of this Audemars Piguet line. Over the past three decades, the Audemars Piguet Millenary has consistently drawn global attention for its releases that often feature off-center dials with asymmetric features and openwork dials that show the mechanical underpinnings of various timepiece complications.
Although unpredictability seems to be the only consistent attribute of the Audemars Piguet Millenary line, it remains clearly identifiable thanks to the unique shape of its case. Quite unlike the standard round or rectangular wristwatch shapes, the oval-shaped case of the Audemars Piguet Millenary both defines and unifies the collection. Going far beyond the relatively straightforward features of the original Royal Oak, the Millenary collection includes breathtaking moon phases, tourbillons, and other complications.
The Audemars Piguet CODE 11.59 trades the splashiness of the Millenary for a supreme elegance, but this doesn’t mean that it isn’t extremely innovative in its own right. In fact, Audemars Piguet surpasses the unconventional oval shape of the Millenary case with a design that merges a round bezel with an octagonal middle case to create a bold and geometrically complex foundational architecture. The CODE 11.59 enhances its visual allure with a double-curved sapphire crystal, meticulously crafted to offer a comprehensive view of the dial from both vertical and horizontal perspectives.
Adding to the effect, many CODE 11.59 models have dials augmented by enamel, lacquer, aventurine, or other dazzling finishing elements. The exciting and revolutionary nature of the Audemars Piguet CODE 11.59 is reflected in its name. "CODE" is short for "challenge, own, and dare," while “11.59,” as the minute before midnight, evokes feelings of anticipation for the new day and the wonders that the future may hold.
When he founded Audemars Piguet along with Edward Auguste Piguet, Jules Louis Audemars was already well-known for his ability to create superbly complex timepieces that are both elegant and ornate. So, it is fitting that Audemars Piguet developed a collection that epitomized both of those qualities. The Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars line owes much of its elegance to its extraordinarily slim cases, which places it firmly in the tradition of the classic dress watch.
Its clean lines, traditional round cases, and straightforward, easy-to-read dials also contribute to its timeless refinement. However, the Jules Audemars also makes a lavish statement in terms of the high-end materials used in its production. Many watches in this collection are comprised of precious metals such as platinum and gold. The Jules Audemars line also excels when it comes to luxury ornamentation. In the words of Audemars Piguet, “the uncompromising art of gemsetting” transforms many of these timepieces.
Just as Audemars Piguet established the Jules Audemars line to pay homage to company founder Jules Louis Audemars, it established the Edward Piguet line to pay homage to company founder Edward Auguste Piguet. Although both lines were discontinued in the mid-2000s, each remains highly sought-after due to their highly distinctive attributes.
Unlike the standard circular cases of the Jules Audemars collection, the Edward Piguet collection stands out with its uniquely contoured rectangular cases, which provide ample space at both the bottom and the top for attention-grabbing chronograph features, date displays, and other complicated movements.
Despite often being overshadowed by the more famous Royal Oak series, the Audemars Piguet Edward Piguet line merits greater acclaim for its exceptional quality. This series, named after one of the brand's founders, showcases a level of craftsmanship that has earned it significant accolades in the watchmaking world. Notably, an Edward Piguet model was awarded the Complicated Watch prize at the inaugural Grand Prix Horlogerie de Genéve, highlighting its intricate design and technical excellence.
The idea behind the Audermars Piquet (re)Master is brilliant in its simplicity: take an original wristwatch from the company’s illustrious history and reproduce it with modern tech. The original watch chosen is one of the most interesting of the roughly 300 chronographs that Audermars Piquet made during the first half of the 20th century. Dating back to 1943, this watch features a traditional tri-dial chronograph design.
Audermars Piquet likens the (re)Master to a “remastered recording from the 1940s,” improving on the overall quality of the original by incorporating the latest horological technology and altering the dial design for greater legibility. In terms of functionality, this watch is self-winding and features an integrated column wheel and flyback functionality.
In terms of aesthetics, this watch stuns with its slim profile, classic indices, and two-tone case of stainless steel and 18-carat pink gold. Adding punches of color and making the watch easier to read, the chronograph hands and tachymeter scale are painted in blue, and the chronograph minutes totalizer features a red “45.” A holdover from the 1943 design, this red number facilitates the timing of each half of a soccer match.
While it doesn’t have the deep pedigree of many of the other watches on this list, the Audemars Piguet Huitieme is one of the most iconic watches in the company’s incredibly deep catalog. Its design harkens back to many of the company’s most striking models from the mid-20th century.
Named after the French word for "eighth," the Huitieme reportedly references a hypothetical eighth day of the week and represents Audemars Piguet’s desire to usher in a whole new era of horological engineering and timepiece design. Highly versatile, the Audemars Piguet Huitieme line features cases that range from stainless steel to yellow and rose gold, and these cases often integrate both brushed and polished surfaces. The line also includes time-only models as well as those with complex chronographs and perpetual calendars.
Dedicated wristwatch collectors and first-time buyers alike cannot go wrong with any of the best Audemars Piquet watches on this list. But whether you are hunting for an Audemars Piguet Rolex or any other luxury timepiece brand, the seasoned wristwatch professionals at Bezel can deliver the watch of your dreams at a reasonable cost. In the unlikely event that you can’t find exactly what you want in our extensive existing inventory, simply describe your desired watch, and one of our dedicated personal concierges will track it down for you!
Whichever watch you choose, you can be confident in your purchase thanks to Bezel’s comprehensive in-house authentication. We employ professionals who hail from major auction houses like Christie’s and Sotheby’s, ensuring that your watch has been thoroughly vetted, verified, and authenticated. Bezel offers further assurances through its extensive Buyer Protection Policy, which guarantees the delivery of all Bezel as marketed with full function and all key features and characteristics intact.
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