The last 15 years have been interesting in the watch industry to say the least. I have seen everything from big watches dominating, 20k watches being the norm and watch brands opening their own boutiques and so much more!
Ever since the economic global meltdown of 2008, priorities have changed and shifted focus. We have seen watch brands in the 3-5k range surface to the forefront with an emphasis on quality and value. Brands like Tudor, Alpina, Frederique Constant and Nomos are being taken seriously not just within new watch circles but serious watch aficionado’s and the like. This has trickled down to even the sub $1,000 range where there are a lot more brands and competition. The truth is there are only a handful of brands that are even worth mentioning in that sub one thousand dollar point.
The brand that has taken the world by storm and that is a personal favorite of mine is newcomer Martenero out of NYC. The brand launched at the beginning of last year. I became friendly with Martenero founder, John Tarantino, who I interviewed last year when the brand launched. To hear that interview, please click here.
The first collection when the brand launched was available in two different models, The Ace & The Founder. This was a refreshing change to the mundane government issue looking atypical watch that lacked imagination and originality. What made the brand even more interesting was the ability to go on their website and customize the dial, hands and strap. These two models were produced in limited edition of 1,000 pieces each. These are only available in a 42mm size, have surgical stainless steel cases and use self-winding Miyoti 821A movements. These have sapphire crystals front and back and are an amazing value at $485.
Two weeks ago, Martenero upped the ante, when they released their second collection of two models known as the Ascent & Marquis. These models are available both in a 38mm and 42 mm size. Like the Ace & Founder, both the NEW Martenero Ascent & Marquis are fully customizable on the Martenero website for $595. Why the $110 difference? Well, the watches have new dials with applied elements, new hands, and the cases have been redesigned and the movements have been upgraded. The Ascent is a utilitarian everyday watch while the Marquis is a more of sophisticated dress watch. To hear my thoughts on the NEW Martenero Ascent & Marquis, click here .
The real question we need to ask ourselves, is it worth it? My answer is Hell yes! I don’t think you could find a better watch out there for the money that speaks to the novice, aficionado, collector and enthusiast all at the same time. The NEW 38mm size option is genius! It opens a whole new category for a women to wear and enjoy as well as the vintage watch collector who prefers a more refined or sophisticated size. You can see the details in the watch have been very well thought out. These sort of details you would find on much more expensive watches. If you ask me, $595 is a bargain for what you are getting! The best part is that they are assembled in NYC.
I had the chance to interview John Tarantino back in June of this year. We talked about the NEW collection at the Ace Hotel in NYC where we caught up over cocktails. To hear that interview, click here
Please don’t delay, there is nothing to think about. The NEW Martenero Ascent & Marquis are the best bang for the buck out there. They are of the highest quality and are completely unique, customizable watches, hand assembled in the best city in the world at a very accessible price point! To order you Martenero watch today, click here!