Dive Into The World Of Panerai Watches And Find The Perfect Timepiece For You

Some watchmakers are so iconic that hearing their name is all it takes to conjure up a sense of luxury and prestige - and that’s why Panerai needs no introduction. We all know and love the designer’s legendary watches, after all.

So, let’s take a closer look at how Panerai became a household name and which one of its coveted timepieces is the best fit for you.

Silver watch with red bracelet
Panerai Logo

When was Panerai founded?

In 1860, Giovanni Panerai founded his first watch shop, which served not only as a workshop and store but also as Florence’s first watchmaking school, responsible for training many of Italy’s best watchmakers.

From the beginning, Panerai worked closely with the Italian Navy, creating its iconic diving watches for the country’s naval force, as well as other military precision instruments.

That’s why, to this day, the brand pays homage to its history by incorporating classic nautical design traits in all its timepieces - from bold cases and minimal dials to oversized luminous hands and elegant leather straps.

How Panerai watches are made

Every single Panerai watch is carefully crafted by master watchmakers in Switzerland, with meticulous precision and incomparable craftsmanship. To achieve the unmatched level of excellence the brand is renowned for, Panerai combines traditional watchmaking techniques with cutting-edge technology.

It takes hundreds of steps to create each Panerai watch and countless hours of meticulous work. Firstly, Panerai’s master watchmakers carefully assemble all the intricate mechanical movements that make up each watch - a process which is completely done by hand. Then, they put together the case, crown, crown-guard, and bezel, and finally seal it to make the watch water-resistant.

After that thorough process is completed, the finished timepiece goes through the last and most rigorous phase of production: quality control, where it must pass several tests to assure the watch meets all of Panerai’s strict standards. Once the timepiece passes quality control, it’s shipped to Panerai stores and partner retailers, where it’ll meet its new, lucky owner.

Blue watch with blue bracelet

What Panerai should I buy?

Whether this is your first luxury watch, or the newest addition to your growing collection, Panerai is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a luxury timepiece with a unique design, especially if you’re all about military-inspired watches.

 While Panerai offers countless watch models, all its timepieces fall into one of the brand’s four iconic collections: Luminor, Luminor Due, Radiomir, and Submersible. Let’s take a look at what makes each collection unique, and find the best option for you.

Mens black watch with brown bracelet

Panerai Luminor

One of the most recognizable watch designs ever, the iconic Panerai Luminor is inspired by vintage watches the brand created for the Italian Navy in the 1950s. The watches in this collection feature large cushion-shaped cases fitted with Panerai’s iconic crown-guard - a feature which is synonymous with the brand and makes the Luminor instantly recognizable.

If you’re after a classic timepiece you can wear to a business meeting, a dinner date, or even when you go sailing, then this is the perfect style for you. And the best part is that, as with most Panerai watches, you can easily switch the straps on your Luminor, opting for a leather strap one day and a rubber strap the next - making them even more versatile.

Panerai Due

The Luminor Due collection follows the same overall aesthetics of Luminor watches, but these timepieces' cases are about 40 percent slimmer than their counterpart - making them slender enough to slip under the cuff of a dress shirt, and giving them a refined look.

Although you have several case sizes to choose from, the watches in the Luminor Due collection are the smallest Panerai offers, starting at 38 mm. This collection also offers a wide range of dial colors to suit a wide range of tastes - from classic neutrals to colorful designs.

Mens blue watch with blue bracelet
Mens black watch with brown bracelet

Panerai Radiomir

These timepieces were designed based on a prototype Panerai made for the frogmen of the Royal Italian Navy, in 1936. Unlike the Luminor collection, Radiomir watches don’t feature Panerai’s signature oversized crown-guards on the side of the case, giving these timepieces a sleeker design on par with dress watches.

Radiomir watches come in a range of case materials, dial colors, and strap options, with case sizes ranging from 42 mm to 47 mm. Although most models are time-only, additional functions, such as GMT and Power Reserve indicators, are commonly seen in the Radiomir collection. If you love the look of Panerai watches, but you’re after a dressier timepiece, then Radiomirs are perfect for you.

Panerai Submersible

Submersible timepieces are modern dive watches. This is the only Panerai collection to feature rotating timing bezels and diver-style dials. With water-resistance ratings starting at 100 meters, chronographs, and other additional diving functions, the Submersible collection is where you’ll find the brand’s professional diver’s watches.

Submersible watches feature oversized cases which range from 42 mm to 47 mm, as well as the iconic Panerai crown-guard. You can choose from a wide range of case materials, such as stainless steel, titanium, gold, and bronze. If you’re after an unbeatable diver’s watch to help you underwater - and an elegant timepiece to wear on dry land - then the Submersible was made for you.

Mens black watch with blue dial

Where to find Panerai watches in the Bay Area

Shreve & Co. is your go-to jewelry store for Panerai watches in San Francisco and Palo Alto, CA.

As the Bay Area's leading jewelers, we have the knowledge to answer any questions you might have, and the expertise to help you find the best Panerai timepiece for you.

Visit us on Post Street in San Francisco or in Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto. And, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to keep up with our latest news and get some stunning jewelry inspiration!