The brand’s fame is partly due to Sylvester Stallone, who ordered a bespoke batch of Panerai Luminor models engraved with his signature after spotting one in a Roman jeweller’s store in 1995. The Italian Stallion is now closely associated with Panerai: and he’s not the only action hero to have a Luminor on his wrist. Arnie, Jason Statham and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson have all lent their muscle to the Panerai reputation.
A Panerai luxury watch is all about purity of design. Rarely will you find a cluttered dial on these Italian masterpieces. Even the brand’s special editions - with the exception of a few skeletonised models - retain the clean, open display of the original Radiomir and Luminor watches.
Like the marine commandos for whom they were originally designed, Panerai luxury watches perform where they need to, without telling the world what they can do. Where there are complications, they read out on understated subdials and counters. Tool functions - like the 300m water resistance of the Luminor - are incorporated to provide real-world assistance for the user.
Two watches. Four variations. There is no ‘classic’ range here. No ‘performance’ line. Every Panerai is an inheritor of the same distinctive style. The philosophy is simple. When you’re this good, why hide behind embellishments?
Owning a Panerai is about wanting something different. The dial design, which has remained unchanged since the 1940s, is a truly original statement - a link to a past in which simplicity and reliability were the cornerstones of sophistication. This exceptional rigidity of purpose brings a uniformity to Panerai luxury watches that few other maisons de haute horlogerie can emulate. Not for Panerai are the multiple model families, or the different style notes, of the typical Swiss luxury watch brand. Instead, the Italian watchmaker has opted to perfect a look beloved of some of the world’s most famous movie heroes.
From Rocky to the Terminator, the biggest names in Hollywood’s high-octane elite choose to strap Radiomir and Luminor watches to their brawny forearms. More than 150 years since Giovanni Panerai opened his Florentine watchmaking workshop, his creations are still in the thick of the action.