To say that Grand Seiko is having a phenomenal year so far might sound like hyperbole but it really isn’t. The 140th anniversary of Seiko has seen more than 10 updated collections and limited editions released in the first half of the year alone. The latest release celebrating the milestone year is called the Seiko 140th Anniversary SBGZ007 ‘Sky Full Of Stars’ and comes from the Micro Artists Studio, GS’s elite artisans, capturing the effortless elegance of the night sky across its dial and platinum case.
Grand Seiko are renowned for their exquisite dials, just look at the Birch Forest from earlier this year and the SBGZ007 is no different. It was created using techniques Grand Seiko have mastered on multiple watches in the past to give the impression of stars across a deep blue background – seeming to shimmer and shift as you look at it from different angles.
Their specific goal was to emulate the night sky above the Japanese village of Achi, widely regarded as one of the most beautiful night-time vistas in the country. Having never been to Achi I can’t say if they were successful but it is a cool backdrop for the white gold hands and triangular baton indices.
However, while 2021 has seen many high quality dials from GS, the cases have tended to follow a trend of clean lines and Zaratsu polishing that is perfectly lovely, if a little bland at this point. Not so with the SBGZ007 where the artisans in the Micro Artists Studio have gone all out on the 38.5mm diameter platinum case.
Every millimetre has been engraved with an intricate pattern of star bursts that perpetuates the starry aesthetic of the dial across the entire watch. And, of course, it is finished with Zaratsu polishing because this is Grand Seiko.
The Spring Drive Calibre 9R02 housed inside was originally developed by the Micro Artists Studio in 2019 and showcases their technical talent in addition to their artistic excellence. The dual spring barrels and torque retention provide a power reserve of 84-hours, great for a piece as thin as this at only 9.8mm overall. The movement, visible through the display caseback, comes engraved with the phrase Micro Artist although upon request any inscription can be added.
It comes on a blue crocodile leather strap that matches the same blue tone as the dial and is equipped with a three fold clasp. The simple strap is very classic and in fact this whole watch has a classic appeal – from its 38.5mm sizing to its time-only function, although a power reserve indicator is tucked away on the rear of the calibre.
The Grand Seiko 140th Anniversary watch is limited to just 50 pieces so chances are you’re already too late to get one. And that’s without taking into account the fact the fully engraved platinum case probably sends the price into the stratosphere.
Price & Specs:
Model: Grand Seiko Masterpiece Collection Seiko 140th Anniversary SBGZ007 “Sky Full Of Stars” Limited Edition
Case/Dial: 38.5mm diameter x 9.8mm height, platinum 950 case with an intricate engraved pattern, blue dial with the appearance of stars in reference to Achi’s starry skies
Water resistance: 30m (3 bar)
Movement: Spring drive calibre 9R02, manual winding, 39 jewels
Power Reserve: 84h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, power reserve indicator (on the caseback)
Strap: Crocodile leather
Price/Availability: £72,250, limited to 50 pieces, available exclusively at Grand Seiko boutiques
More details at Grand Seiko.