Time has always been elusive. However, leave it to the romantics to find ways to make the most out of it. This fixation stems from the desire to carve moments into one’s memories, which, after a hundred sunrises — if luck would be so kind — defy the nature of decay.
When hearts cease to beat, memories live on. Whether they find second lives through the stories grandparents tell their grandchildren or through a simple memento passed on from generation to generation, time makes this all possible.
The first wristwatches were initially reserved for royalty. What were once timekeeping fixtures on walls and towers evolved to become wearable accessories. However, it was in the 1970s, with the advent of quartz technology and batteries (before then, watches were typically powered by mechanical movements involving gears and springs), that watches became more accessible to everyone, marking a democratization of timekeeping technology.
Time may be constant, but its path is far from linear. After quartz watches, tech companies mastered the art of developing smartwatches. These devices not only tell time but also deliver news from the internet and enable wearers to make phone calls from their wrists. However, smartwatches might have unwittingly compromised themselves. Despite their functionality, the technology and materials used in these gadgets may not endure for generations after their initial wearers. In contrast, quartz watches stand a better chance at withstanding the test of time.
On this note, an increasing number of people are now recognizing the value of steel watches housing automatic/mechanical movements — the ones typically found in luxury watches. Such watches are viewed as smart purchases that should endure for years to come.
Luxury watches in Cebu
“Luxury items do not always reflect the overall market situation. However, in terms of luxury goods, there’s always a good demand for them regardless if the market is at a high or low,” explained Paolo Javier T. Ledesma of Royal Movement Luxury Watch Store. Royal Movement positions itself as Mindanao’s first luxury watch trader, and it recently opened its physical store in Cebu City, partnering with entrepreneur Chase Cokaliong, among others.
“We wanted to be able to provide hands-on, high quality customer service. So, I partnered with good friends you can really rely on,” said Ledesma.
According to Ledesma, approximately 90 percent of its inventory are Rolex watches, “It’s the most recognized brand in the world.” He offers an estimate of the average price range of the items offered at the store, which is around P600,000 to P650,000 (approximately $10,650 to $11,500).
“Most of our stocks are Datejusts and Submariners, and a few GMTs. Every now and then, we may have higher pieces but we stock the in-demand sports models,” said Ledesma about its Rolex inventory.
“I decided to buy my first Rolex Submariner Date when a friend advised me that you buy a watch not only because you like the design and function, but also because you get the most value out of your investment. He advised that popular Rolex models tend to hold or increase value over time. That’s when my interest in owning and eventually trading luxury watches started.”
Time to move forward
If one can afford a luxury watch, here are three reasons on why they should consider taking one home with them:
First, these are made with the utmost high quality standards and, therefore, are released in limited quantities. For instance, Rolex has claimed that it takes a full year to build one of its watches from scratch. This scarcity has enhanced demand.
Second, it’s important to note that while many customers can afford these watches at their offered prices, their availability is not guaranteed due to a combination of high demand and meticulous production, among other factors. Stores like Royal Movement provide a solution to this problem.
Finally, some Rolex models hold or appreciate in value over time, making them investment pieces. Economically speaking, a sought-after luxury watch can serve as a hedge against inflation. However, it’s important to note that these market dynamics vary among different watch brands and their models.
Merely “moving on” is a disservice to the human spirit. Instead, moving with purpose toward a particular goal or working towards the achievement of a specific dream makes life worth living.
For some people, rewarding one’s self with a luxury watch is a great way to mark a milestone. For others, buying and selling luxury watches may become a lucrative hobby. For most, they work toward attaining real luxury: The freedom to do whatever they want with who they love responsibly — a little just like royalty.
Royal Movement Luxury Watch Store is located on the second floor of Streetscape, Paseo Saturnino, Banilad, Cebu City. The store is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. It also offers luxury leather bags from top designer houses.