Published on September 1, 2023
Rolex may be the sponsor of the U.S. Open, but it’s not the only watchmaker holding court at the fourth and final Grand Slam of 2023.
Celebs and players alike have turned up to the tournament in New York City’s Queens borough wearing ace wrist candy from the big three—Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Audemars Piguet—as well as extravagant six-figure pieces from independent makers like De Béthune. There has been a mix of old and new in the stands, too, with a coveted discontinued Patek appearing alongside a shiny new Tag Heuer Carrera. Nearly all of the watches hail from Switzerland, except for one that was born in Silicon Valley. Yes, we’ve included an Apple Watch in this list, because, well, it was on the wrist of a former president.
The Open doesn’t wrap up until Saturday, September 9, but here are the best watches we’ve seen at the tournament so far.
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Jimmy Butler’s Patek Philippe Nautilus
Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler turned up to day two of the U.S. Open with one of the most sought-after Patek references on his wrist. The wrist candy in question appears to be the discontinued Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 5711/1A-010 with a blue dial. Perhaps the NBA star wanted to match the blue courts at Arthur Ashe Stadium? The rarity originally retailed for $35,000, but now commands a high price (between $100,000 to $120,000) on the secondary market. Butler wasn’t done showing off the grails of his collection, though. He wore Rolex’s highly collectible Rainbow Daytona the following day.
Taylor Zakhar Perez’s TAG Heuer Carrera “Glassbox”
Actor Taylor Zakhar Perez also coordinated his wristwatch perfectly with the tournament’s tennis courts, which have been painted a signature U.S. Open Blue since 2005. The Red, White, and Royal Blue star was spotted in a bold new TAG Heuer at the Novak Djokovic and Alexandre Muller match on day one of the tournament. Released earlier this year, the “Glassbox” model is a modern take on the iconic Carrera from 1963, with a 39 mm steel case, navy dial, and domed crystal. The best part? It’ll set you back just $6,450.
Pusha T’s Rolex Day-Date 40
There was no chance of Pusha T or his Rolex flying under the radar on day three of the tournament. The American rapper, who rose to prominence as one-half hip-hop duo Clipse, rocked an iced-out Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 40 courtside. The 18-karat white-gold model features a diamond-set bezel and a diamond-pave dial adorned with eight baguette-cut diamonds and two baguette-cut sapphires at 6 and 9 o’clock. It is also equipped with the crown’s classic President bracelet, which was created in 1956 for the launch of the Oyster Perpetual Day-Date. Price upon request, of course.
Queen Latifah’s Rolex Day-Date
The Queen repped the Crown on the second day of the Open. Queen Latifah wore a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date 40 in 18-carat yellow gold as she enthusiastically cheered on the players. The classic timepiece (Ref. 16613) is characterized by a contrasting black dial, a fluted bezel, and a President bracelet. Want to be part of the royal family? It’ll cost you $38,500.
Tommy Paul’s De Bethune
Tommy Paul pulled out all the horological stops for the Men’s Singles First Round on day one of the tournament. The American tennis pro won against Stefano Travaglia of Italy with a breathtaking De Bethune watch on his wrist. Christened the DB28xs Starry Seas, the timepiece pairs a 38.7 mm titanium case with a blue guilloché dial. Perhaps he picked the $90,000 stunner to distract his Italian rival.
J Balvin’s Audemars Piguet Royal Oak
J Balvin proved he was no wallflower on the second day of the Open by pairing an eye-catching green fit with an equally dazzling Audemars Piguet Royal Oak. The timepiece features a 37 mm 18-carat frosted white gold case, a striking open-worked rhodium-toned dial, and a bezel set with 32 baguette-cut rainbow-colored sapphires totaling 2.24 carats. Who cares about the tennis? Price upon request, naturally.
Jessica Pegula’s De Bethune
De Bethune is clearly a hit among tennis players. The Swiss watchmaker’s otherworldly creations appeared on the courts in Queens not once, but twice. American tennis pro Jessica Pegula rocked the same DB28xs Starry Seas as Tommy Paul as she defeated Romania’s Patricia Maria Tig during the Women’s Singles Second Round match on day four of the Open. Perhaps this wrist candy brings good luck.
Lindsey Vonn’s Gold Rolex Day-Date
There’s nothing quite like a gold Rolex—especially if you’re a champion. Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn wore a timeless example—specifically a yellow gold Cosmograph Daytona—at the opening night of the tournament. Her Day-Date compadre Queen Latifah opted to pair the piece with a ton of gold jewelery, but Vonn kept it simple by rocking minimal bling and a bright blue suit.
President Barack Obama’s Apple Watch
President Barack Obama kept things very low-key at the men’s singles on day one by wearing what appears to be a basic black Apple Watch. Believe it or not, it is a bit of an upgrade compared to the Fitbit Ionic he’s been rocking for the past few years. It’s difficult to make out exactly which model the former president donned courtside, but the newest model (Series 8) starts at $249.