Welcome to Watches of the Week, where we’ll track the rarest, wildest, and most covetable watches spotted on celebrities.
A wise man (Uncle Ben from Spider-Man) once said that with great power comes great responsibility. And, of course, it is well known that the man was begging, pleading!, with John Mayer to understand the immense influence he wields over the watch community and to use that power to good. Waiting on the world to change? No thanks, says John Mayer. I’ll change it myself. Let’s look at the facts. Exhibit A: earlier this year, after the singer and Fit God wore a Rolex Daytona with a shamrock-colored dial, the value of the watch went hockey-stick. Naturally, it also started to appear on more famous wrists, like the one belonging to Jonah Hill.
This brings us to Exhibit B. One of Patek Philippe’s standout new releases this year is an Aquanaut with a “khaki-green” dial and rubber strap. When the watch was unveiled at Baselworld in Match, Mayer noticed it looked pretty similar to an Aquanaut he bought around 2013 and equipped with a strap of the same color. “The watch/strap combo that inspired @patekphilippe to release the 5168g “khaki,” he wrote in a caption underneath a picture of his watch posted to Hodinkee’s Instagram.
It’s like no one actually ever said: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Also this week, Rihanna and Dirk Nowitzki show off two very different types of sport watches.
John Mayer’s Patek Philippe Aquanaut
Mayer’s Aquanaut, known as the “Travel Time,” is the first in its line to sport a complication. The watch comes with a GMT function: that fourth hand that allows the wearer to read a second time zone. “It’s a great watch and I wear it onstage most of the time,” Mayer said during a Hodinkee video. Adding to the piece’s value is its Tiffany-stamped dial. “I always like the rare inside, ‘Look closer, but look closer, but look closer still. Look inside the ‘A’ of Tiffany and you’ll see a small photo of myself as a child,’” he joked. As Mayer wrote on Instagram: “We love to see it.”
Rihanna’s Chopard “Happy Sport”
During these divisive times, there is one thing we can all agree on: Rihanna is the coolest person on the planet. There are so many reasons for this—the music, the clothes, the industry-changing beauty brand, when she called someone Fishy Poom Poom—that hardly anyone talks about another point in her favor: her unreal watch collection. Over the years, Rihanna has shown off classic Rolexes models like the Datejust and Day-Dates in rose- and yellow-gold. This week she wore Chopard’s very blingy Happy Sport model covered in 16.15 carats of diamonds, including the ones that sit like stones at the bottom of the lake at the 6 o’clock marker. Take that, Fishy Poom Poom.
Aaron Paul’s Rolex Datejust 41
Aaron Paul paired an unconventional outfit—electric yellow shirt and navy suit—with an incredibly conventional watch. There are few watches more befitting “classic” or “icon” status than the Rolex Datejust, which the brand put out on its 40th anniversarry in 1945. It doesn’t seem special now, but at the time, the watch marked a technological evolution: the Datejust was the very first self-winding watch with a date display that would cycle to the next day at midnight. Aaron Paul always knows what day it is (bitch!).
Maluma’s Richard Mille RM 67-01
On the product page for the RM 67-01, there is a portrait of the actor John Malkovich wearing the piece. Who can say why? It is part of the magic and mystique of Richard Mille that legendary actors sometimes just materialize for no readily apparent reason. One theory: Richard Mille bills this extra-thin model as a “lifestyle” watch, as opposed to the (chunkier) made-for-sports models it markets with the help of famous race car drivers, Rafael Nadal, or the golfer Bubba Watson. But you don’t have to be a world-class athlete to wear this watch—just a world-class actor, or Maluma.
Dirk Nowitzki’s Rolex GMT-Master II “Root Beer”
When it comes to the Rolex GMT and its two-tone bezel, the black-and-blue “Batman” and red-and-blue “Pepsi” get a lot of the shine. Maybe that’s because, and stay with me here, they are the layups and three-pointers of the watch world: reliable, sound choices that are approved by the community at large. That makes the black-and-brown “Root Beer” GMT the watch world’s mid-range jumper: only condoned if you’re a legendary German who can handle a tricky swerve, like pulling up from 18 feet off of one foot.
Alexander Skarsgard’s Glashutte GUB Spezimatic
German watchmaking began in a tiny town of about a couple thousand people called Glashutte. But post-WWII, all the watch companies in the region needed to merge in order to survive. The result was Glashütter Uhrenbetriebe, or GUB, a manufacturer that was forced to learn how to make all of its pieces in-house since it couldn’t rely on imports. The watches made during that era are old and rare, and it appears Alexander Skarsgard wears a vintage GUB Spezimatic all the time. A pretty watch with a history lesson baked inside it.
Justin Theroux’s Tiffany 1837 Makers
Gird your bank accounts, gentlemen, because Tiffany & Co. has a brand new men’s jewelry collection. The collection includes a $180 silver golf tee and a scientifically perfect gold chain, but, in my opinion, the best piece is the excellent square-faced watch seen here on Justin Theroux’s wrist. Praying we all have a little blue box in our future.