Like James Bond, you like to change from scuba fins to formal wear in seconds and you need a watch that can transform as seamlessly into your lifestyle. By mixing up the straps (from metal to rubber and leather), this selection covers your bases for any situation. Watches (starting from left):
R1 163, S. Bacher & Company
This is a good-looking, chunky submariner-style watch that’s affordable, but will keep your colleagues guessing as to what high-end brand you splashed out on. The solid metal bracelet means you can sport it with a summer suit at a cocktail event or dress it down in boardies at the beach. And while we wouldn’t advocate spear-diving for coelacanths with it, it does have a basic level of water resistance.
IWC Top Gun Miramar
R115 000, Charles Greig
Paying tribute to the legendary Miramar flying school where the film Top Gun was set in 1986, it makes us want to get our Maverick on (for the youngsters, that’s Tom Cruise pre-Oprah’s couch). Should you actually be a fighter pilot, fear not, this is no gimmick. It holds its own with a ceramic case, nifty green military strap and automatic winding. Plus, it’s secured against drops in pressure in the cockpit.
Nixon The October
R3 850, Nixon
This unusual, bold watch with its unique round style packs the kind of weight you imagine David was looking for in his catapult when he was eyeing up Goliath. While we haven’t thrown it at Andries Bekker, we’re pretty sure this chunky heft of a watch would survive the test: it’s backed up by an antiglare-treated, hardened crystal dome and sandwiched with stainless steel and rivets. Paired with the leather strap (you can also get a rubber strapped model), it’ll go with a variety of outfits.
Alpina Startimer Pilot Chrono
R10 995, Picot & Moss
There’s something about this watch that got a near unanimous “we like” vote from the Men’s Health team. Perhaps it’s the aviation heritage aspect, the refreshingly new brand to South Africa (they took their time getting here seeing as they’ve existed since 1883) or maybe it’s that great grey NATO strap. It could also be their descriptor: “Designed for serious pilots who fly in fast jets, not designed for the business class traveller sitting in seat 1A of a 747 jet.”
Citizen Super Titanium
R6 999, Citizen Watches
Titanium as a watch material works because it’s hard and light like Floyd Mayweather in the ring. With military notes jazzed up by a black titanium case and orange-accented dial this 200m water-resistant gem from Citizen sports the brand’s Eco-Drive and a whole lot more attitude. Ensure that you dress with a similar level of panache.