A keepsake watch, given as a gift, often marks a special occasion: a graduation or a new job, or in the case of Chinese tradition, a marriage. I've always loved the Chinese custom of the bride giving the groom a nice watch on their wedding day. After all, if the bride gets a sparkly engagement ring, the groom should have something too! Needless to say, the boy is all for this custom—so much so that he's been ogling watches since before our engagement. It was a sit-down with Rado Switzerland representatives though—and not a jewelry store visit—that introduced me to this luxe Swiss brand.
Rado prides itself on a history of innovation and a reputation for durability. They created the world's first scratch-resistant hardmetal watch in 1962 and were the first luxury brand to come out with ceramic watches. Rado's other technical design signatures include sapphire crystal and hard-as-diamond surfaces. In other words, these are watches meant to take the scratches and hard knocks of everyday wear, and still be passed on from father to son in impeccable condition.
Rado's other draw? The price. At roughly $1,000 to $5,000 a watch, it's a splurge for sure, but not so OTT that you'd keep it locked up in a safety deposit box 24/7 and only take it out for special occasions. Nope. This is a watch that epitomizes everyday luxury.
Right: Rado True Men's Plasma Auto Grey Dial ($1800)
Now, the only question is: Which one will the boy like?