Welcome to Watches of the Week, where we’ll track the rarest, wildest, and most covetable watches spotted on celebrities.
Bobby Shmurda’s first 24 hours of prison were a fantasy come to life. Months ago, his pal Quavo drew up the details: “a jet, flooded out with his gang, his family, a couple vibes [read: women] for him,” the Migos member told GQ. That wasn’t all. There was the Dumbo penthouse, a barber on location, a FaceTime call from Meek Mill, and a watch befitting a rap phenom. According to GQ’s Frazier Tharpe, Bobby’s friends brought him a whole buffet of items to choose from, including racks of luxury clothing and a selection of watches. Bobby quickly landed on this Sky-Dweller. There was just one small—err, big—problem: the watch didn’t fit at first, and Bobby joked it was because of all the muscle he put on over the past several years. Once that was straightened out, it was clear that Bobby made the right decision. It’s hard to imagine a better watch to pair with a triple-layer-cake-sized stack of cash—or to sit side-by-side with Quavo’s iced-out Richard Mille RM 11-03. Also this week, Jay-Z wears another ridiculous Patek Philippe, and Usher’s watch looks like a sci-fi movie prop.
Bobby Shmurda’s Rolex Sky-Dweller
The Sky-Dweller is Rolex’s youngest model, and when it debuted in 2012, it was only available in different shades of gold. In other words: it was more expensive, and not quite as casual, as the brand’s other sports watches. Consequently, it didn’t take off immediately. That all changed in 2017, when Rolex started offering the Sky-Dweller in stainless steel. Now, the piece is a favorite among folks like Michael Jordan, Young Thug, and LaMelo Ball—and now Bobby Shmurda.
Jay-Z’s Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
Jay-Z wears watches that typically only show up in auction catalogs. His collection of timepieces includes a one-of-one Richard Mille that took 3,000 hours to make, a Patek Grandmaster Chime worth $2.2 million, and a Rolex that watchmaker Franck Muller upgraded with an aftermarket perpetual calendar. Add to that list this Patek Philippe, which Jay wore to announce his champagne brand’s sale to LVMH. While the Nautilus hogs the spotlight among mainstream Patek fans, diehard collectors know that few watches are more impressive than the brand’s perpetual calendar chronographs. As Hodinkee pointed out in a review of this piece in 2014, “no other watch has appeared on as many watch auction catalog covers.” And while many auction-cover-worthy pieces disappear into safety deposit boxes the moment they’re sold to the highest bidder, Jay-Z is the type of collector who actually wears his best pieces.
Usher’s Purnell Escape II
Usher’s watch is distinguished by Purnell’s Double Spherion mechanism, which spins the watch’s two movements operating in reverse of one another. Each of these movements keeps its own time; an average of the two is taken, and displayed on the face. The movement is the brainchild of cult-favorite designer Eric Coudray, who works with brands like Jaeger-LeCoultre—but really gets to let his freak flag fly with smaller, more daring houses like Purnell or MB&F. (You may know the latter as the brand that makes literal rocket ships for the wrist.) Usher’s Escape II is just another example of Coudray’s spage-age thinking—and the piece’s alien-green accents certainly don’t hurt, either.
Mike Conley’s Audemars Piguet Millenary
Poor Mike Conley may have been snubbed for the NBA All-Star Game again, but he won’t be snubbed by Watches of the Week, too. This week, Conley showed up wearing an Audemars Piguet, a favorite among NBA ballers, but went away from the watchmaker’s most famous piece. While many of Conley’s colleagues gravitate to the iconic Royal Oak, Conley went with the brand’s Millenary model. The Millenary is rather unique in the luxury watch world: the watch features an oval-shaped case and an off-center dial that oozes out to the right. The design of the watch enables Audemars to include a (sorta) legible dial with a fully skeletonized movement.
Aaron Boone’s Oris Aquis Date Relief
Over the course of last year’s MLB playoffs, baseball fully got its swag back. Unlike the other major sports that involve high-speed and high-flying collisions, baseball’s slo-mo style of play makes it possible for the athletes to wear full trays of jewelry during the action. Managers got in on the trend, too: Dave Roberts wasn’t without his Panerai Luminor while managing his Los Angeles Dodgers to a World Series victory. The upcoming baseball season is already off to a great start in this department, thanks to Yankees manager Aaron Boone. Boone showed up for the Bombers’ team photos wearing an Oris Aquis Date with a red rubber band and red accents. The Aquis is a diver’s watch aimed at raising awareness for the startlingly short supply of fresh water left on Earth.