watch brand pronunciation

The Ultimate Watch Brand Pronunciation Guide (By A FRENCH Native Speaker)

Sorry guys, but not a single result from page 1 of Google Search for “watch brand pronunciation” is right. None of them. You will not be able to pronounce correctly the watch brand names if you rely on the advice and pronunciation of English native speakers.

How do I know?

Well, I was born in Brussels, Belgium and I have been speaking French since forever. Well, since I was 18 months old or so, but you get the idea. I wish English was my first language – it would help me write these articles waaaay faster – but it’s not.

But the good news is I can definitely help you with French! (updated October 2018)

Jump quickly to the pronunciation guide of a particular brand name:

  • Audemars Piguet – [o.dœ.mɑʁ pi.ge]
  • Blancpain – [blɑ̃.pɛ̃]
  • Baume & Mercier – [bom e mɛʁ.sje]
  • Bovet – [bo.ve]
  • Breguet – [bʁe.ge]
  • Cartier – [kaʁ.tje]
  • Chopard – [ʃɔ.pɑʁ]
  • Corum – [kɔ.ʁɔm]
  • F. P. Journe – [ɛf pe ʒuʁn]
  • Franck Muller – [fʁɑ̃k my.lɛːʁ]
  • Frederique Constant – [fʁe.de.ʁik kɔ̃s.tɑ̃]
  • Girard-Perregaux – [ʒi.ʁɑʁ pɛ.ʁœ.go]
  • Hublot – [y.blo]
  • Jaeger-LeCoultre – [ʒe.ʒɛːʁ lœ.kultʁ]
  • Jaquet Droz – [ʒa.ke dro]
  • Laurent Ferrier – [lo.ʁɑ̃ fɛ.ʁje]
  • Longines – [lɔ̃.ʒin]
  • Louis Erard – [lwi ɛ.ʁɑʁ]
  • Louis Vuiton – [lwi vɥi.tɔ̃]
  • Maurice Lacroix – [mo.ʁis lɑ.kʁwa]
  • Montblanc – [mɔ̃.blɑ̃]
  • Omega – [o.me.ga]
  • Patek Philippe [pa.tɛk fi.lip]
  • Piaget – [pja.ʒe]
  • Roger Dubuis – [ʁo.ʒ dy.bɥi]
  • Rolex – [ʁɔ.lɛks]
  • Tissot – [ti.so]
  • Ulysse Nardin – [y.lis naʁ.dɛ̃]
  • Universal Genève – [y.ni.veʁ.sal ʒœ.nɛv]
  • Vacheron Constantin – [va.ʃə.ʁɔ̃ kɔ̃s.tɑ̃.tɛ̃]
  • Zenith – [ze.nit]

As you may know, Switzerland is divided into 26 cantons (federated states) that speak one of these 3 languages: Italian, German… and French. Most Swiss brands are based in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. And here is why they look and sound so French.

Yet the problem remains: you don’t know how to properly pronounce those watch brand names. Until today!

Rejoice, the wait is over. I’m not gonna treat you with some useless pseudo-phonetic, cryptic capitalized words. And I’m not gonna post a list of 2 seconds audio clip (from an English or French native speaker, your pick) without any explanation about how to get the pronunciation right.

I’m going to go through every single trap you don’t want to fall into, and what to be aware of to pronounce some of the world’s most famous watch brand names right. Complete with full-length videos (and wristwatch checks, if you like them too).

And I will continue to add more brands and how to pronounce guides here as I publish new videos about how to pronounce watch brands on my YouTube channel (click here to subscribe to it, I post videos about watches multiple times a week!). In the meantime, you can still enjoy the REAL phonetic spelling.

If you’ve been waiting for a definitive guide, this is the one. It’s the real deal, and you know it! A vos marques… Prêts? C’est parti ! (Set… Ready? Go!)

Audemars Piguet

[o.dœ.mɑʁ pi.ge]

Audemars Piguet is not that difficult to pronounce the right way. You have to keep in mind that you don’t have to pronounce a few letters – this happens often in French). Keep them vowels tight and stress the right part of the word: you’re a champ!

I will never tell you how to pronounce Royal Oak, but trust me on Audemars Piguet. You’ll sound like a French speaker in a few minutes!

Don’t:

  • pronounce the s of Audemars
  • pronounce the u or the t of Piguet

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers. The a in Audemars can be a bit longer, though.
  • stress the last syllable of each name: Aude’mars Pi’guet

Tips:

  • the e in Audemars sounds just like the e in the in English
  • the in Audemars doesn’t sound like car, it sounds like trap in English!
  • the r in Audemars is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • the i in Piguet sounds really close to pee, just a little shorter
  • to get the guet in Piguet right, check the video!

Blancpain

[blɑ̃.pɛ̃]

Blancpain means literally “white bread” is kinda tough to pronounce for English speakers.

The reason is that, most of the time, the first and the second vowel sound almost exactly the same whereas in French, there is a clear difference between an and ain. You should definitely check the video, as it’s kind hard to explain with text how to get this right.

Don’t:

  • pronounce the c or the n in Blancpain
    • the c is not heard at all
    • the n is part of the the last sound

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Blanc’pain

Tips:

  • there is a clear distinction between the an and the ain. Nail that and you’ll sound French in seconds immediately!
  • the an sounds like in come on in English
  • to get the ain in Blancpain right, check the video!

Baume & Mercier

[bom e mɛʁ.sje]

Surprisingly enough, pronouncing Baume & Mercier the right way is not that difficult.

Don’t:

  • pronounce the e in Baume
  • pronounce the r at the end of Mercier
  • say “and” for “&” in Baume & Mercier, it should be the French “et”

Do:

  • shorten all the vowels. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers. The au sound in Baume can be a little longer, though.
  • stress the last syllable of each name: Baume  & Mer’cier

Tips:

  • the mer in Mercier sounds just like the word mer or mère in French
  • the first r in Mercier is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • the er sound in Mercier is short and shuts down immediately.

Breguet

[bʁe.ge]

This is one is easy! You’ll pick the Breguet pronunciation in just a few seconds, I promise!

Don’t:

  • pronounce the u or the t in Breguet, none are heard

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Bre’guet

Tips:

  • the r in Breguet is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • both e in Breguet sound like the first part of hey in English
  • the e sounds in Breguet don’t change over time. Keep the same sound!

Cartier

[kaʁ.tje]

Carier is not that difficult to get. Most English speaker get the second syllable almost right. The challenge is pronouncing the first one the right way. You’ll get there!

Don’t:

  • pronounce the second r of Cartier

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Car’tier

Tips:

  • the in Cartier doesn’t sound like car, it sounds like trap in English!
  • the r in Cartier is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • stop as soon as you pronounce the e in Cartier. The second syllable should be short! (check the video for the right pronunciation)

Frederique Constant

[fʁe.de.ʁik kɔ̃s.tɑ̃]

Ha! Frederique Constant is one of the most difficult names to pronounce. Most English speakers pronounce the first and second vowel sounds of Constant almost exactly the same way. Whereas in French, there is a clear difference between on and an. Check the video, as it will become really clear how to nail these.

Don’t:

  • pronounce the u in Frederique
  • pronounce the t in Constant

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of each word: Frede’rique Cons’tant

Tips:

  • the r in Frederique is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • the an in Constant sounds like in come on in English
  • there is a clear distinction between the on and the an in Constant. Nail that and you’ll be way closer to sound French!
  • check the video to hear the difference between on and an in Constant

Hublot

[y.blo]

I can’t believe how easy it is to say Hublot, yet so many English speakers get it wrong. Because, no, it’s not pronounced “hue blot” or “hue blow”. Come on guys, you’ll pick this one in 30 seconds!

By the way, Hublot means “porthole” in English, referring to the shape of the case and bezel of most of their watches.

Don’t:

  • pronounce the h or the t in Hublot
  • pronounce the u in Hublot like you in English, it really doesn’t sound like that at all!

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Hu’blot

Tips:

  • dont make the vowel sound change over time, they stay the sound the same during the whole time you pronounce them
  • check the video to hear how easy it is to say this one…

Jaeger-LeCoultre

[ʒe.ʒɛːʁ lœ.kultʁ]

I guess you find many instances where you actually hear someone pronouncing Jaeger-LeCoultre right… because there aren’t many. And even then, you will hear different ways. Of course, the English way kinda butchers the first name, and here is where you have to be the most precise in order to sound French.

Don’t:

  • pronounce Jeager the English way, the pronunciation couldn’t be further form the actual French way
  • pronounce the l in LeCoultre too strongly. It’s there but very subdued.
  • pronounce the e at the en of LeCoultre

Do:

  • pronounce the Coultre part in one go, without stopping
  • the r in Jaeger-LeCoultre is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • stress the last syllable of each name: Jae’ger-Le’Coultre

Tips:

  • don’t look at how the name is spelt, seriously. Just learn how it sounds. Check the video for this one, it’s the only way.

Longines

[lɔ̃.ʒin]

I hear a lot of English speakers pronounce Longines quite right actually. Most are 90% there. With just a few tweaks, you can get there too as well!

Don’t:

  • pronounce the s in Longines

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Lon’gines

Tips:

  • it’s pretty difficult to give you text-based advice on this one, you should check the video to hear exactly how to say Longines

Montblanc

[mɔ̃.blɑ̃]

Montblanc literally means “white mount” or “white mountain”. Also, it’s the name of the highest mountain of Europe, located in the Alps between France and Italy. It’s a German company making Swiss made watches. I know, it’s complicated (pun intended).

And so is the pronunciation of the name, because of those nasal vowels. But here are some tips to help you get there.

Don’t:

  • pronounce the t or the c in Montblanc

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Mont’blanc

Tips:

  • dont make the vowel sound change over time, they stay the sound the same during the whole time you pronounce them
  • there is a clear distinction between the on and the an in Montblanc. Nailing this is what will make you French!
  • the an in Montblanc sounds like in come on in English
  • check the video to hear the difference between on and an in Montblanc

Patek Philippe

[pa.tɛk fi.lip]

I really don’t want you English speakers to know how to pronounce Patek Philippe. I think it sounds so cool and sexy when you guys say it! But here it is, if you want to pronounce what is arguably the king of all Swiss watch brands.

It’s actually pretty easy to get this one right!

Do:

  • shorten every vowel, especially the e and the i in Patek Philippe. They sound way shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the each word: Pa’tek Phi’lippe

Tips:

  • both i in Philippe sound exactly the same. Many English speakers pronounce them differently, whereas you shouldn’t.

Rolex

[ʁɔ.lɛks]

I tend to say Rolex in English in my videos, because it has almost become a common word in every language. I mean, who needs an introduction to Rolex?

But actually, the English way is not the only way… and certainly not the French way. So if you want to sound French, here is what you should do. Or rather, say.

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Ro’lex

Tips:

  • ex in Rolex sounds exactly the same as my ex in English, super simple!
  • the r in Rolex is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • check the video the get the o from Rolex right

Tissot

[ti.so]

Yet another French-sounding name that many English speakers get almost right. In just a few seconds, you’ll be able to say this like a guy from Paris… or Le Locle, should I say (in which the company is headquartered).

Don’t:

  • pronounce the t in Tissot

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the name: Ti’ssot

Tips:

  • dont make the o in Tissot sound change over time
  • check the video to hear how easy it is to say this one…

Ulysse Nardin

[y.lis naʁ.dɛ̃]

Okay, this one is one of the unlucky names that get mispronounced all the time. When said English-style, it gets pretty dirty.

But don’t fear! The tweaks are few and easy, and you will finally know exactly how to pronounce Ulysse Nardin. Time to impress everybody at dinner!

Don’t:

  • pronounce the u in Ulysse like you in English, it really doesn’t sound like that at all!
  • pronounce the e in Ulysse (not at all)
  • pronounce the in in Nardin like come on in English, it sounds different (check the video for the right pronunciation)

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the each word: U’lysse Nar’din

Tips:

  • the u in Ulysse sounds exactly like the u in Hublot
  • check the video to hear exactly how to nail the pronunciation of Ulysse Nardin

Vacheron Constantin

[va.ʃə.ʁɔ̃ kɔ̃s.tɑ̃.tɛ̃]

A brand from the holy trinity, and arguably the most difficult one to pronounce for a non-French native speaker. Why? Because you get all 3 nasal vowels for French: on, an and in. All in one word!

But in the video, I give you an easy exercise to get to the pronunciation of those 3 sounds. You should really check it out, as text can only go so far.

Do:

  • shorten every vowel. They sound shorter and tighter than what you hear from most English speakers.
  • stress the last syllable of the each word: Vache’ron Constan’tin

Tips:

  • the in Vacheron sounds like trap in English!
  • the r in Vacheron is a French dry r. Use your throat!
  • the an in Constantin sounds like in come on in English
  • check the video to hear exactly how to say Vacheron Constantin, along with an exercise to get to those nasal vowels

How to pronounce 31 watch brand names

And here is a video where I pronounce 31 watch brand names in a row, without stopping. Enjoy!