Seiko is presenting another pair of Limited Editions in celebration of their 140th anniversary, and in particular their long bond with the Ginza district of Tokyo. The new watches are built within the Prospex and Presage families, and each share unique dials that capture a beautiful structure and color inspired by modern day Ginza. This is where Seiko’s founder, Kintaro Hattori, found himself selling and repairing clocks and watches circa 1881 at the ripe age of 21, and it is still home to the brand 140 years later.
These aren’t the first watches to celebrate Seiko’s 140th, though (and hey, they don’t look a day over 130). We saw a collection of 4 watches that spanned the Prospex, Presage, Astron, and 5 Sport families. All united by their white dials and blue bezels. We took a hands-on look at our favorite, the SPB213, right here. Since then, a new Alpinist and Pressage Style ‘60s have made their own appearances, and the latest anniversary LEs make use of these new platforms.
The new Alpinist is the reference SPB259J1, and is built on the 1959 re-interpretation introduced earlier this year. The round steel case measures 38mm in diameter with a thickness just under 13mm. This one is powered by the caliber 6R35 with a 70 hour power reserve, and will see 3,500 examples produced.
The Presage is the reference SSA445, which receives the open heart dial offering a view of the 4R39 inside. This one measures 40.8mm in diameter and 12.8mm in thickness, and gets a trim black bezel insert to frame the dial. 4,000 examples of this reference will be produced.
The defining feature of each reference here is the dial color and construction, which is meant to mimic the cobblestone streets found within the Ginza district. The mosaic of tiles emanate within 8 quadrants around the dial, and the tiles themselves are finished in two different sunburst textures that catch light a little differently. The color is somewhere between blue and grey, but the brilliance of the finish looks to create a dynamic appearance in motion, again a nod to the atmosphere of Ginza.
The seconds hand of each watch is finished in a color called Komparu, a traditional Japanese color named after Komparu Street within the heart of Ginza. The distinctive color was first used in the late 19th century by geishas who lived in the area. It’s bright enough to create a lovely contrast with the dial, and together create a rather compelling experience around the brand’s heritage. Still, these are watches we’ll need to see to fully appreciate.
Both watches will be available through Seiko boutiques and select retail partners come October. The Alpinist will be priced at €750 in European markets (~$890) while the Presage is offered at €590 (~$700). Seiko.