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Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores

Welcome back to an aBlogtoWatch original series, where we discuss important stores that sell watches all over the world. Each store we profile has an interesting story to tell about where they operate and who they sell to. Whether you buy watches from brick and mortar retailers or prefer to buy watches online, these are the stores that help shape our watch culture around the globe. There is a long list of stores to cover, but if there is a retail location in your favorite city that we simply can’t miss, let us know in the comments below. Here is a map of stores we have covered so far.

Where to buy watches in Walnut Creek, California?

With the name “OC Watch Company,” you might expect to find this store in Orange County in Southern California. But no, in this case, it’s “OC” for O’Connor, as in Kyle O’Connor, who spent a dozen years in the jewelry and customer service industry before opening OC Watch Company in 2013 in Walnut Creek – which is in East Bay area in Northern California. But Kyle has been selling watches since 2009. With OC Watch Company, he created the area’s leading destination specializing in the sale, acquisition, trading, and service of high-end wristwatches.

Kyle says that each client he meets has their own set of needs, and their satisfaction is his utmost priority. His goal is to share his knowledge and passion with customers and to educate them on any aspects of the industry they have questions about, and to guide them through any prospective changes to their collection.

Kyle believes that much like a well-tailored suit, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all piece for collectors and enthusiasts. He sees his mission as to find that special watch that meets or exceeds his clients’ high expectations.

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores aBlogtoWatch: What types of watches are popular in your market? What makes Walnut Creek a unique place to buy watches?

OC Watch Company: Rolex and Panerai are the most popular brands in Walnut Creek. Walnut Creek has become THE place to shop in the East Bay with the addition of stores like Neiman Marcus, Prada, Tiffany & Co., along with the addition of the Broadway Plaza Promenade.    

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores ABTW: What would you tell watch lovers in other cities that watch lovers in Walnut Creek like? Do you serve mostly locals or tourists, or is it a good mix? Also, what percentage of your customers would you call “knowledgeable watch collectors?”

OC Watch Company: A lot of local customers and not so many tourists. However, a lot of people in the Walnut Creek area have moved here from other parts of the United States, which brings a lot of family and friends that visit and end up purchasing watches here. I would say it is a 50/50 mix of watch collectors vs people that enjoy nice timepieces. 

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores ABTW: What is Walnut Creek best known for? What do visitors have to do, see, or eat while there?

OC Watch Company: Walnut Creek has become the place to come for shopping and dining in the East Bay. With the massive remodel of Broadway Plaza and downtown area, people don’t have to travel to San Francisco to get that shopping and dining experience.  

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores ABTW: As a business, do you sponsor or participate in any local events, watch-related or otherwise?

OC Watch Company: I founded the San Francisco chapter of Red Bar. Buying and selling watches is not just a business for me. I have enjoyed watches since I was about 11 years old when my Dad gave me my first watch. I have sponsored many of the Red Bar SF events so far.    

Buying Watches In Walnut Creek, California: OC Watch Company Watch Stores ABTW: What are some of the watch brands you are known for carrying? If you could pick a watch brand or model that epitomizes the culture or style of Walnut Creek what would it be?

OC Watch Company: OC Watch Company is all about luxury pre-owned watches. Therefore, we carry a little bit of everything. Specializing in brands like Rolex, Panerai, IWC, Omega, Breitling, Cartier. It is great for our customers because we are not confined to carrying only a few brands. We offer a tailored non-biased shopping experience for first time watch buyers and collectors. 

There are so many watch brands to choose from – however, I would say Rolex best defines the watch collecting culture of Walnut Creek. I can say for my customers and friends in Walnut Creek, Rolex is not just a “name.” Rolex has a great dedication to build quality and classic styling.

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    Despite the upscale location, his relaxed attire sets the tone for an easier, no pressure nor condescension watch browsing/buying experience.

    • Kyle O’Connor

      Thank you! I appreciate the kind words.

      • BIG CHRONO

        You’re very welcome, sir. May it rain only continued success upon you.

  • Boogur T. Wang

    side note:
    I’ve been in this shop a couple of times, “browsing.” Big Chronos’ observation seems to be correct. (note the car pics on the wall)

    • Kyle O’Connor

      Thank you!

  • Noah S

    I’ve bought two watches from the OCWC and can’t say enough good things about Kyle, his staff and the store. They have a great selection, fair pricing and have always treated me as a valued customer – and that’s the highest compliment I can give. The OCWC is a great place to buy custom watch bands too. I’ll buy from them again soon enough!

    • Kyle O’Connor

      Thanks Noah! Always great to see you and the family:)

  • egznyc

    I get that they sell a lot of pre-owned watches. It would be interesting to better understand what the mix is between sales of pre-owned vs. new watches, and how many of their pre-owned watches are vintage vs. modern.

    • Kyle O’Connor

      Great Question. The primary focus of the store is pre-owned watches. We are an AD for Victorinox Swiss Army but everything else is pre-owned. However or specialty is pre-owned watches (90’s to present). We do take trade-in’s, buy and sell “vintage” watches (pre 90’s) as well. When it comes to vintage pieces we stock quality pieces that are in good/great condition that we will be able to warranty and stand behind. If a number was put on vintage vs. modern it would be 5%-10% of the overall inventory. If someone is looking for a specific vintage piece we can work on locating that piece as we have a large network of vintage dealers around the country. I hope this helps answer your question and please let me know if you have any more questions.

      • egznyc

        Thank you for your response. If I were to find myself in the Bay Area again this would be a great place to visit.

  • IanE

    Sob, I have no sweetie shops anywhere near me.

    • Boogur T. Wang

      You obviously have the interwebs.
      The world is your shopping oyster.

      • IanE

        Yes – but it makes seeing watches in the metal much harder!

  • Anthony Dimaano

    I sent my Omega SMP to kyle for service last year.
    He charged a fair price, and the watch came back looking great, and is still running better than ever!

    • Kyle O’Connor

      Thank you Anthony! Hope to see you again soon.

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