October 27, 2013
Zenith continues its tribute to the famous explorer Christopher Columbus with this fancied-up 10-piece limited edition featuring a superbly enamelled, engraving and micro-painted caseback.
There is a lot of detail, some of it very subtle, on the caseback. I’ll walk you through and give a closer look at some of the details which I find noteworthy.
Surrounding the gyroscopic mechanism are a finely hand-engraved portrait of Columbus and a sextant (far right):
Above these features are a representation of the Santa Maria, Columbus’ flagship on his voyage of 1492. The champleve enamelled sails accurately incorporate the red cross — save for one which I see has been replaced by a Zenith star. Around the edge of the caseback I see a mini-painting of the horizon at dawn or dusk; you can even see a small wheel which evokes the sun. It all comes together in a most impressive fashion; just think of how many hours it must have taken Zenith’s master craftsmen to create such a scene!
Dial side, the architecture is arranged so as to highlight the watches most prominent features: the chain-and-fusee constant force system and the gimbal cage which holds the 36,000 vph regulator constantly horizontal. Also on display are hours/mins (12 o’clock), power reserve (4 o’clock), and small seconds (9 o’clock).
The counterweight to the regulator in the gimbal is also specially done — a representation of the Southern hemisphere, entirely hand painted.
The case is 45mm rose gold, 14.8mm thick. Limited edition 10 pieces, each will sell for a cool $353,000.
words by Kyle Stults