Written By: Vahid Moradi
As one of the most impressive types of watches, The perpetual calendar watch is a complex timepiece that embodies masterful watchmaking. But what is a perpetual calendar watch and what makes it so special? With dials that display information from the day of the week to the phase of the moon, these timepieces are widely worn and universally treasured for their accuracy and craftsmanship.
That said, not all perpetual calendar watches are created equal. You’ll find variations with regard to what information is displayed and how it's presented. Aside from that, there are perhaps as many style variations as there are days in the year.
That’s why we’ve put together this list of some of our favorite perpetual calendar watches. If you’re on a quest to discover the best perpetual calendar watch for yourself or a loved one, here are 10 places to begin your search.
#1 IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42
At the intersection of elegance and durability is where you’ll find the IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Perpetual Calendar Watch 42. Held in a stainless steel case with a see-through sapphire back, the Portugieser is one of IWC’s original styles and a top choice for one of the best perpetual calendar watches available.1
With a power reserve of 60 hours, three-bar water resistance, and 326 components, the Portugieser displays the following calendar features:
- Leap year
- Moon phase
All in all, the Portugieser is a classic wristwatch with modern appeal, featuring an oversized face, anti-reflective coating, Pellaton-powered automatic winding, and a green alligator strap that’s sure to enliven every wrist it graces.
#2 IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Perpetual Calendar Edition
In 1868, the American watchmaker Florentine Ariosto Jones started IWC Schaffhausen with the goal of creating beautiful watches that represented a marriage between Swiss watchmaking exceptionalism and American innovation.2
In his quest, he ended up building one of the finest watch brands in the world.
The IWC Schaffhausen brand’s best perpetual calendar watch may very well be the Big Pilot’s Perpetual Calendar Edition watch, representing a masterwork of the trade. The gorgeous design features a ceramic case with a screw-in crown and a see-through, sapphire glass back, and water resistance up to six bars.3 Of course, this timepiece's features include displays for the date, day, month, year and perpetual moon phase.
With a seven-day power reserve, an 18-karat gold rotor, 54 jewels, and a dazzling face in racing green, black, or mojave desert, the brand only made 250 of these incredible watches, making them incredibly coveted and in high demand.
#3 IWC Schaffhausen Portofino Perpetual Calendar Watch
The Portofino perpetual calendar watch from IWC is the perfect option for anyone seeking a stately, sophisticated, and streamlined timepiece. It’s automatic, self-winding, and features a five-bar water-resistance rating for a timepiece that’s sturdy, pragmatic, and handsome.
The Portofino’s 18 karat gold case is complemented by a classic blue calfskin strap. The perpetual calendar displays the day, date, month, year, leap, and moon phase, with an IWC-manufactured movement for ensured accuracy. A see-through sapphire back and arched edge complete this powerful timepiece with a measured and reserved look that still makes a strong statement.
#4 Panerai Luminor
The Panerai brand is known for its unique design elements that blend military practicality with aesthetic grandeur in watches that repeatedly top best-of lists. Since 1860, the brand has stood at the forefront of the industry—even if it is an underdog or a well-kept secret of the industry.4
The Panerai brand flies under the radar to bring the world not one, but two of the best perpetual calendar watches:
Panerai’s Lumnior perpetual calendar watches are a marvel of streamlined design. Select elegant cases made from Platinum tech with a forest green face or Goldtech with a navy blue face. With either choice, you’re guaranteed a watch that exceeds your expectations without crowding your wrist.
To add marvel to reverie, add see-through sapphire crystal backing, classic Arabic numerals, and an alligator strap with ecru stitching to the equation for a timepiece you’ll never want to take off.
#5 Jaeger LeCoultre Polaris Perpetual Calendar Watch
The Polaris Perpetual Calendar Watch from Jaeger-LeCoultre is both glamorous and adaptable. The four-dial face features a gradient blue lacquered face and hour makers, accented with glow-in-the-dark tips that ensure readability no matter the time of day or quality of light.
Another reason the Polaris is in the running for best perpetual calendar watch is the interchangeable strap that allows the wearer to match the watch to the occasion. The stainless steel strap is elevated and refined, while the blue rubber strap lends a sense of sporty athleticism. This is undoubtedly the perfect watch for the man who needs a timepiece that moves between settings with as much ease and he does.
Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Polaris Collection stands as testament to the brand’s unfailing commitment to producing the finest timepieces on the market. The intricate design never sacrifices readability among watches with astronomical but accessible complications.
#6 Jaeger LeCoultre Rendez-Vous Jewellry Perpetual Calendar
There aren’t many watches in the world (or on this list) that come close to the awe-inspiring elegance of Jaeger LeCoultre’s Rendez-Vous Jewellry. Dazzling and unapologetically stunning, this watch is designed for women who don’t just enter a room. They command it.
The black leather strap might project a certain design simplicity, but it ends there. The rest of the timepiece pushes beauty nearly to its limit, with an array of features more often associated with ornate jewelry.
The Rendez-Vous features:7
- A stunning white gold case
- A silvered gray, sunray-brushed dial
- A 1.57 – 1.95 karat diamond-encrusted face
This incredible watch is also available in pink gold with a silvered grey and Guilloché dial.7
#7 IWC Schaffhausen Big Pilot’s Perpetual Calendar Watch Top Gun Edition
Let’s return to that legendary brand, IWC Schaffhausen, for a moment. The Top Gun edition of the brand’s classic Big Pilot line deserves to be considered as one of the best perpetual calendar watches because of its uniquely contemporary take on the style.
The Top Gun edition leans into the military roots of this piece with a face design that marries simple, legible fonts with depths of detail. 3Nicknamed “Mojave Desert,” the watch features a matte finish in a color that evokes army fatigues, a beige rubber strap, and a dark brown dial that displays:
- The date
- The day
- The month
- The four-digit year
- Northern and southern hemisphere moon phases
#8 IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Perpetual Calendar 42 Boutique Edition
Proving a design with true range, the IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar offers a completely different perpetual calendar watch experience than the Top Gun edition.
Where the latter goes for the sort of military simplicity you’d need in the desert, the Portugieser opts for a sophistication more appropriate for sipping espresso in a café along the Mediterranean coast.
The Portugieser Boutique Edition displays its thoughtful measures of time in beautiful blue and gold hues. Or, if you prefer to venture on sunny land over vast sea, choose the striking yellow-gold version with an orange leather strap that draws eyes and hearts.
#9 Jaeger LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Perpetual Calendar Watch in Pink Gold
A pink gold case, brown leather strap, and eggshell beige face are the hallmark design features of this Master Ultra Thin Perpetual Calendar Watch from Jaeger LeCoultre. But this incredible watch is far more than a one-size-fits-all design. The watch features three style variants offering options to customize the strap, face, and dial design.
The Master Ultra Thin includes perpetual calendar displays for every time increment from seconds to dates to moon phases in a setting that’s fashionable, polished, and tasteful, making this watch an essential timepiece for the man who isn’t afraid to dazzle.
Its seamless design settings include:
- Dauphine hands
- Gilt hour markers
- Tinted varnish dial
#10 Jaeger LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Perpetual Calendar Watch in White Gold
Finally, we present one last contender for the title of best perpetual calendar watch: another variant of the Master Ultra Thin from Jaeger LeCoultre. This watch is both classic and contemporary, featuring an extra-thin design, this time in a white gold case, without sacrificing the wealth of information you expect to receive.
Like the pink gold variation previously mentioned, this Master Ultra Thin features Dauphine recto-hands and offers perpetual calendar functionality for reading the second, minute, hour, date, day, month, year, and moon phases.8
All styles of Master Ultra Thin are bound to make your wrist stand out. But if you want to truly make a statement, the 1302501 model features approximately 80 diamonds encircling the watch face. If you have a loved one that lights up your life, the Master Ultra Thin from Jaeger LeCoultre makes the perfect gift.
CJ Charles: Bringing You the Finest Perpetual Calendar Watches in the World
Whether you're a watch enthusiast or want to add to your collection, it's no doubt that a perpetual calendar wristwatch is a must. At CJ Charles, we believe that every wrist is worthy of the world’s finest watches. That’s why we’ve made it our mission to help customers around the globe find their next besotted timepiece.
Whether you’re looking for an impressive perpetual calendar watch or another style for your collection, you’ll find it at CJ Charles. We partner with the world’s most renowned watchmakers—IWC Schaffhausen, Omega, Panerai, Bulgari, Cartier, and Breitling, to name a few—to deliver top quality watches.
But that isn’t all. When you turn to CJ Charles for your next watch, you’ll be glad to know that you can keep wearing it for years to come. Our watch repair specialists are standing by to help you keep your timepiece in excellent condition. That’s the CJ Charles way.
Find your most exquisite perpetual calendar watch today and wrap time around you.
Written By: Vahid Moradi
Vahid Moradi’s lifelong passion, dedication, and commitment for the jewelry industry led him to become the respected owner of CJ Charles Jewelers in 1988. From that moment, Moradi’s single focus in business was to become recognized as the pinnacle of value and world-class quality in the his Community. Over 34 years later, CJ Charles continues to grow and thrive as a successful, family-owned business that consistently provides exceptional service to all their clientele.
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- DeMarge. The Best IWC Schaffhausen Watches to Buy in 2022. https://www.dmarge.com/best-iwc-watches
- CJ Charles. Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Edition Racing Green. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/big-pilot-s-watch-perpetual-calendar-edition-racing-green-iw503005
- Mens Fashion Online. Is Panerai a Good Watch (Everything You Need to Know). https://www.mensfashionline.com/is-panerai-a-good-watch-everything-you-need/
- CJ Charles. Luminor Perpetual Calendar Watch. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/luminor-perpetual-calendar-platinumtech-pam00715
- CJ Charles. Lumnior Perpetual Calendar Watch. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/luminor-perpetual-calendar-goldtech-pam00742
- CJ Charles. Rende-vous Jewellry Perpetual Calendar Watch 3493420. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/rendez-vous-jewellery-perpetual-calendar-3493420
- CJ Charles. Jaeger LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/master-ultra-thin-perpetual-calendar-1302501
- Chrono24. Bulgari: Good luxury watch brand or just jewlelry? https://www.chrono24.com/magazine/bulgari-good-luxury-watch-brand-or-just-jewelry-p_95332/
- CJ Charles. Octo Finissimo Watch 103200.https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/octo-finissimo-watch-103200
- The Truth About Watches. Jaeger-LeCoultre: Four of the Best. https://thetruthaboutwatches.com/2020/05/jaeger-lecoultre-four-of-the-best/
- A Lange & Sohne. Heritage. https://www.alange-soehne.com/ww-en/manufactory/heritage
- CJ Charles. Richard Lange. Perpetual Calendar “Terraluna” White. https://www.cjcharles.com/collections/perpetual-calendars-watches/products/richard-lange-perpetual-calendar-terraluna-white-gold-180-026