Panerai was born in Florence in 1860 when Giovanni Panerai opened his watchmaker’s shop on the Ponte alle Grazie, serving as a shop, a workshop and a watchmaking school. During the First World War, Panerai starts supplying the Royal Navy with high-precision instruments enhanced with its patented Radiomir luminescent substance and later, during World War II, its safer Luminor paint. The military theme has never left the brand’s designs. Today the brand is owned by the Compagnie Financière Richemont S.A since 1997.
Five interesting facts about Panerai
1 – Paneristi
Panerai fans are called Paneristi.
2 – Military watches
Radiomirs were not only used by the Italian navy, but also by German divers in World War II too.
3 – Plexiglass
Some of the early Panerai’s were equipped with Plexiglass as it was less likely to break.
4 – Radium
The original Radiomir timepieces contained radium a rather nasty radioactive chemical. They are still considered dangerous today so watch out if you buy one at auction.
5 – Famous people spotted wearing panerai
Famous people spotted wearing Panerais include Heidi Klum, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Clinton, Mike Horn, Dwayne Johnson, Hugh Grant, and Dylan McDermott among others.