Hodinkee x Grand Seiko

When Hodinkee lines up to collaborate with a major watch manufacturer, rest assured the team are going to hit it out of the park with every detail meticulously pored over to create the best watch watch possible, true to the brand’s history. And this is no different.

Teamed up with Grand Seiko, the teams have spent three years perfecting this – Grand Seiko Automatic GMT SBGM239 Limited Edition for HODINKEE. Only 500 are to be made and unfortunately for some, only available in the US market.

Fitted to a stainless steel bracelet, a first for the SBGM series – since Grand Seiko became its own independent brand in 2017 – and to U.S.-based collectors, the 39.5mm case features an achingly beautiful dial in a shade of twilight blue that was partially inspired by the daily transition from day to night – the hours that comprise dusk in English, or Yūgure in Japanese. Powered by the self-winding 9S66 caliber, the watch features GMT functionality and a 72-hour power reserve.

Unfortunately to those who don’t live in the US, it will prove difficult to get your hands on one new, with over half of the allocation ready for immediate delivery and the remainder shipping in February 2021. The price for this limited Grand Seiko? $5,400.


Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight “Navy Blue”

The Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight was and still is one of the best looking watches released in the past few years and now Tudor has extended the family with a new “Navy Blue” version. Getting its name from its coloured dial and bezel and the year the first Tudor divers’ watch certified to 200m was presented.

If you are familiar with the Black Bay 58 family, it will be all a familiar recipe, the 39mm case that harks back to the classic proportions of the 1950s, stunning snowflake hands first seen in 1969 and a Manufacture Calibre MT5402. The calibre is considered weekend proof, with a reserve of about 70 hours so wearers can take it off on Friday night, put it back on Monday and not worry about having to reset it.

When Tudor first introduced a blue dial and bezel diver’s watch in 1969 it soon became known by aficionados as ‘Tudor Blue’. The colour was soon adopted by the French Navy or Marine Nationale and the Black Bay Fifty Eight Navy Blue follows this tradition. As with most Tudor Black Bay watches, this is offered on a steel bracelet, a synthetic soft touch strap and a woven fabric strap with a distinctive central line running through it.

If you want to stay true to the history of the Navy Blue, the woven strap is the one to go for. Matching the dial, the straps are a thing of beauty in themselves. Woven in France on 19th century Jacquard looms by the Julien Faure company in the St-Etienne region, its manufacturing quality and comfort on the wrist are unique and it is the perfect watch for Tudor and the Julien Faure company to celebrate a 10-year partnership.

The MT5402 calibre in the Black Bay Fifty Eight Navy Blue is a fairly simple complication displaying hours, minutes and seconds, built specifically for robustness, longevity, reliability and precision in this 200m certified dive watch. Calibre MT5402 is chronometer-certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC), with its performance going beyond the standards set by this independent institute. The COSC normally allows for an average variation of -4 to +6 seconds per day, but Tudor did one better and fixed a tolerance of -2 to +4 seconds per day. It might not seem much to the average person on the street but these tolerances can make all the difference 200m below the surface.

The Tudor Black Bay Fifty Eight is available now from all good watch retailers at a starting price of £2,520 on the fabric or synthetic strap whilst it costs a little more at £2,760 for the steel bracelet.

Swatch Sistem 51 Hodinkee Vintage 84

Hodinkee, the one stop shop for all things horological has on occasion teamed up with some of the top watch manufacturers to create what the team felt were the ultimate watches – some favourites include the Zenith El Primero, Tag Heuer Carerra Skipper and the Nomos Glashutte Metro Chronometer.

20017616_copy_1600x1600Most of the limited edition watches are snapped up as soon as they are announced with prices ranging between $2,500 and $60,000 until its most recent announcement. Hodinkee teamed up with Swatch to create the latest collaboration – the Swatch Sistem 51 Hodinkee Vintage 84 to give its full name. It is accessible for most too, priced at $150 described as, “interesting, democratic, and just flat-out cool.”

The watch uses Swatch’s self-winding movement, Sistem 51, originally released in 2013 with a 90 hour power reserve and one central screw holding the 51 parts together. Designwise, the watch pays tribute to Swatch’s first sports watch with reinterpreted luminous markers, sword like hands and a date window at the six o’clock. Being the quirky movement that it is, Swatch added a clear caseback so users can see the black and white patterns change as the winding rotor spins.

It is available to preorder on the Hodinkee store with deliveries starting December 12th, just in time for Christmas. If you aren’t lucky enough to grab one of the preorder slots from December 12th, Swatch will stock a limited quantity at its flagship store on Times Square in New York.