Thursday, June 8, 2023

Celebrating 110 years


This year marks the 110th anniversary of Seiko's first wristwatch. 

The history of Seiko began in 1881 when 21 year-old Kintaro Hattori opened a shop in Ginza repairing and selling timepieces. In 1892, he opened a factory called Seikosha to produce his own clocks. Twenty years later, when pocket watches were still the standard, he was experimenting with wristwatches, which were state-of-the-art technology at that time. In 1913 his company successfully produced Japan's first wristwatch and has since created many innovative wristwatches.

The limited edition SPB385J was created in honour of the 110th anniversary of Seiko's first wristwatch, the Laurel. The ice-blue dial was inspired by the Arctic conditions that explorers and researchers faced throughout the 1960s and '70s on expeditions to the North and South Poles. Many of these adventurers wore Seiko on their long and cold journeys. Seiko proved its durability and reliability throughout these expeditions and therefore wanted to capture the arctic glaciers in this textured dial.
SPB385J Seiko Prospex Automatic GMT Divers

42mmm case size. Stainless steel case and bracelet plus additional nylon strap. Icy blue dial with date window. Sapphire crystal. GMT hand. Automatic movement - calibre 6R54. Water resistance 200 metres. Only 4,000 pieces worldwide. 

Boutique price: $2,800

Snoopy, come home!


Seiko 5 Sports is celebrating its 55th anniversary in 2023 and in honour of this, they have collaborated with PEANUTS and released a pair of Seiko 5 Sports models featuring Snoopy.

Charles M. Schulz first introduced the world to PEANUTS in 1950, when the comic strip debuted in seven newspapers.
Since then, Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the PEANUTS gang have made an indelible mark on popular culture.

SRPK25 features Snoopy as a surfer, who is out riding the waves.

SRPK27 features Snoopy flying through the air as a helicopter, with his best friend Woodstock as the pilot and Snoopy's beagle ears serving as the propeller.
The designs on both models are linked to the original PEANUTS art, with the images of the characters being carried over from the original cartoon strips in newspapers.

To add to these collaborative watches, the hand-drawn script of Charles Schulz, the creator of this comic strip, is used on the bezel display of SRPK25, the dial of SRPK27, and for the 'LIMITED EDITION' text on both case backs.

No detail was spared, Snoopy's paw print is displayed on the crown of both of these models to add an additional Snoopy touch to the watches. 
We only have a few of each model in stock so be quick!
SRPK25 Seiko 5 Sports 55th Anniversary PEANUTS Limited Edition

38mm case size. Stainless steel case. Grey and white nylon strap. White dial with Snoopy design. Hardlex glass. Day/date function at 3 o'clock. Unidirectional bezel. Automatic movement - calibre 4R36. Water resistance 100 metres.

Our price: $595
SRPK27 Seiko 5 Sports x Peanuts Parachute Snoopy Limited Edition

36.4mm case size. Stainless steel case and black leather strap. White dial with Snoopy design. Hardlex glass. Day/date function at 3 o'clock. Automatic movement - calibre 4R36. Water resistance 100 metres.

Our price: $575

Seiko automatic 3 days GMT


Let me state the obvious:  the latest release of the SEIKO black and green divers GMT will be both the proverbial 'final straw' and the demarcation line between AliExpress enthusiasts, Christopher Ward crowds and true hard core Seiko followers.

For a simple reason: the price. $2,500 is an amount that separates magpie collectors on a budget with enthusiasts who understand the difference between the value and the price.

In other words: for those who want them cheap, Seiko is finally out of reach. And for those who understand that making cheap watches is a suicidal business model, the SEIKO Diver GMT will be a perfect choice. 

"Oh, I still remember days when you could have had a good house overlooking the harbour for 5,000 pounds!"  And a quarter acre block of land in Castle Hill for $1200 . And a Seiko automatic for $59. And a Rolex submariner for $425. And the list goes on, and on, and on. Sweet memories that span over 70 years. Often, greatly embellished and greatly exaggerated. 
So if houses and land and Rolexes were so cheap, why didn't you buy a dozen of each back then? 

To the point: SEIKO makes a variety of watches, from a few hundred to many thousands. Horses for courses. Can't afford a $2,500 watch? Ask your boss for a pay rise or save harder. Or, get rid of AliExpress junk you shouldn't have bought in the first place. 

Yes, there will be many screaming at Seiko's prices. Like in 2008 when people were screaming at watch dealers selling a preowned Rolex GMT for $4,500. Nothing new under the sun. 

The question to be asked is this: am I getting value for money? Is the Seiko Diver GMT worth the asking price? 

Strap it to your wrist and you'll know the answer.
42mm case size. Stainless steel case and bracelet. Sapphire crystal. GMT hand. Automatic movement - calibre 6R54. Water resistance 200 metres.
Black SPB383J
Boutique price: $2,500
Green SPB381J
Boutique price: $2,500

Friday, June 2, 2023

Here it is!

A photo of the NH Fifty Five Timascus Guilloche has been just released on Instagram, so here is one for you as well. Thank you for your patience! 

Truly humbling: the Instagram followers went crazy; over 600 likes, 60 comments, orders and shares. All we can reply with is: thank you for your support. 

We are already onto the next step: as we speak, ten new Timascus dials are being made, one at a time, to be released in the most vibrant colours you can imagine. Then, ten movements in matching colours will be produced as well.
What will happen after that - is yet to be determined. But we'll keep you informed.
Check out the Instagram post here:

You will be blown away - guaranteed.

In front of me is the latest and hottest release of May 2023: SEIKO Presage GMT. Absolutely amazing watch.


Let's start with the crown argument for GMT: no reputed watch can offer you such a quality product for only $995.
Quite frankly, you should really stop reading now, and place your order. There are Swiss brands out there who would charge you more for a leather strap. And significantly more just for a regular service. $995 for something that would last you at least 20 years? Unbeatable deal.


Yes, this is the J model meaning the watch is entirely made and assembled in Japan. Priceless.

1960s LOOK and FEEL

A full credit to Seiko's designer who really nailed the DNA of a classic 1960s watch! The shape of the hands, well proportioned lugs, skinny bezel, matching leather strap. Not to mention the most handsome 'chocolate' colour scheme. Loving it! 40.8mm case size. 


On a SEIKO GMT, pulling the crown into the quickset position and turning it forwards, does exactly what you expected it to do: to set the GMT hand to GMT time. You would think that this is how Swiss GMT watches are set, wouldn't you? Unfortunately not: in almost all cases, the quick setting is via the hour hand. What a weird, painful and counter-intuitive way of setting the watch! Not with SEIKO. I'd say this should be another 'reason alone' to invest in a SEIKO GMT. 

We have two in stock, ready for immediate delivery. New release - the one we've been waiting for so impatiently!
Price: $995

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

And the gold medal goes to: The Crown

The other week I attended a typical ethnic wedding. And by 'ethnic' I mean a wedding with too much food, too many overdone bridesmaids and music so loud that we went deaf after the first song. The kind of wedding non-ethnic people can only dream of. And it was fantastic.

Sat next to me was a man my age or there about, wearing a Rolex GMT in gold and steel. A flashy brand new looking piece which perfectly complimented the fine suit, white shirt and gold tie. 
"I like your watch" - I said.
"Yes, thank you, I like it too. I don't wear it often - actually, special occasions only."

And that was it. Neither of us mentioned the word 'Rolex' or 'money' or 'impossible to get'. That would be unnecessary, and rude, even at a wedding reception where excess and opulence was a key ingredient of the night.

Yes, some people still buy watches because they like them. Not because of the brand name or investment potential. But for many collectors, it is the story behind the watch that matters the most.

Here is the story of a very unique timepiece worth sharing. 

On May 29th, 1959, it was announced that Tokyo would host the 1964 Olympics. Shortly after, Shoji Hattori (Seiko President from 1946 to 1974), decided that Seiko should handle the official timekeeping at these Olympic Games. After extensive research and development, Seiko was notified in May 1963 that they were chosen to be the official timekeepers for the Olympics, which would take place only 17 months later. "We are not assigning official timekeeping to a Japanese manufacturer because the Olympics will be held in Tokyo, but because these are actual functional stopwatches, backed up with solid theory" was the statement given by the technical committee after declaring Seiko as the official timekeepers.

The 1964 Crown Chronograph was developed with an Olympic theme in response to this milestone, becoming the first Japanese wristwatch to include a stopwatch function.                         
The latest Seiko Chrono SRQ037J was inspired by the original 1964 Seiko Crown Chronograph. It features beveled hour markers, sharp hour and minute hands with coloured Lumibrite, and chronograph pushers and markers on the outer dial ring. The seconds counter hand curves gently downwards so that the tip of the hand is as close as possible to the dial markers, and extends to the tachymeter markings at the very edge of the dial to ensure that elapsed time can be read as quickly and accurately as possible. 
Make no mistake: this is a high-end watch made for a watch collector who is ready to venture out and beyond the usual Swiss offering. Completely made in Japan, it is as close to perfection as you would expect it to be. Yet the most remarkable feature is its look: a fusion of vintage and modern; a watch that 'reminds you of a watch from a certain era' yet you would be unable to pinpoint it to a year, or even a decade; a watch that 'reminds you of another chronograph' - yet you won't be sure of which one. And this is the beauty of it - it is a watch that stands for itself despite being inspired by the most handsome chronographs of the 1960s.

The retail price of $4,695 places the watch well below the cheapest Omega chronograph and on par with run of the mill Swiss mechanical chronos. Yet I would rather have a Seiko with a story than a Swiss watch that is merely a product of clever advertising. The 1964 Tokyo Olympics was a global event of international importance, and the honour of being an official timekeeper was of huge importance to SEIKO. Proof that SEIKO has arrived to the global scene. A gold medal in my books.

42.5mm case size. Automatic movement - calibre 8R46. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Monday, May 22, 2023

I keep one under my pillow


I literally do.
Surely, there are thousands of watches that would do the trick, but nothing beats Astron. Especially if you are a 'light sleeper'. You set your mental clock to 4:30, but you keep checking the time every 10 minutes from 3am onwards. The more important the reason to get up, the lighter the sleep. That's me. And probably every other person over the age of fifty five.
Having an Astron under the pillow is not just about time. Astron serves as a 'dummy for grown ups'. You slide your hand underneath your pillow, and you are comforted by the reassuring warmth of titanium, knowing that things will work as planned.
I rarely take my Astron out of the house and I do get upset when it gets moved or misplaced. My particular watch has no luminous markers at 3 and 6 o'clock which means I can easily tell the time at a glance, effortlessly. It is an older model with pencil thin markers but still, it glows 'radioactive green' like a Christmas tree.
You've heard it before: "Astron is the most accurate analogue watch in the world". Sure it is. But Astron is much more than that: it is definitive proof that humans have reached an important moment in technical development. We can harness the power of the sun, satellite communication and mechanical perfection to create a masterpiece like no other, available at a price anyone can afford. To combine all that in one is a remarkable achievement. An extraordinary watch by an extraordinary watchmaker, crafted for a sophisticated buyer.
Just before sunrise, this morning, I went to Dobroyd Head to 'play radios'. A rather strange game: a packet of digital signals is transmitted from earth towards a satellite, and the digipeater on the satellite bounces the signal back to earth. This tiny shoebox flies 6,000 km above the earth at a speed of 5km per second, providing a coverage radius of 12,000 kilometres. The trick is to calculate the azimuth and elevation while taking care of Doppler frequency shifts in both transmission and receiving. During this quick pass, I've made contacts with Japan, Taiwan, Australia and New Zealand. A sophisticated game, played by sophisticated players.

And yes, this morning, as you would expect, I was wearing my Astron.
43.1mm case size. Black titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $3,600
42.7mm case size. Titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $3,750
42.7mm case size. Titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $3,750
43.1mm case size. Black titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Limited edition 1,500 pieces worldwide.

Boutique price: $3,600
43.1mm case size. Titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $3,300
42.8mm case size. Titanium case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $3,750
41.4mm case size. Stainless steel case and bracelet. Solar GPS - dual time. Water resistance 100 metres. 

Boutique price: $2,950