This P30,000 Seiko Watch Just Took Gold
The Tokyo 1964 Summer Olympics is now regarded as the most influential Games ever for a host nation. Having spent the last two decades rebuilding after World War II, joining the United Nations, and generally fostering an image of stability and modernity, the Olympics represented the point where Japan was finally reaccepted into the global community. It was the first Games to be held in Asia, and for the Japanese it was a total triumph.
The role of official timekeeper went to Seiko. It marked the occasion well, with the release of Japan’s first watch with a stopwatch function. The Crown Chronograph was also a lovely piece of minimalist design. The sub-dials normally associated with chronographs were absent and it sported one pusher (at 2 o’clock) rather than the more commonplace two. The stopwatch function was executed using a rotating plastic bezel with a minute scale that could be adjusted to time events longer than 60 seconds, and a central chronograph seconds hand.
Now, in time for Tokyo 2020(ne) this August, Seiko is releasing a new collection inspired by that landmark watch, dubbed “Style60’s” – part of its Presage range.
The two new 41mm steel watches replicate the aesthetic of the Crown Chronograph, with box-shaped glass, faceted hour markers, and calibrated bezel. The first comes with the addition of a date window and is available with an ivory, black, blue, or green dial. The second features a 24-hour sub-dial plus a skeletonized “open heart” dial window at 9 o’clock and comes in ivory, black or brown. The colors intentionally echo those of Sixties watch faces, while the Seiko logo is in its vintage font.
Plenty of watch companies offer reinterpretations of Sixties models with tweaked design and contemporary movements. Few are as successful at combining the old with the new as Seiko. Add in the Olympic heritage, plus the thoroughly decent price – between £440 and £530 – and it’s a pretty unbeatable proposition.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.
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