Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches

Grand Seiko Revisits its 1960 Icon with the SBGW314 Hoshizukiyo

A seductive model in a rose gold case with a rich blue dial pays homage to the pioneering watch that put Grand Seiko on the map in 1960.

| By Rebecca Doulton | 2 min read |

In 1960, a team of Seiko engineers produced a watch that encapsulated precision, durability, refined execution and beauty. Launched in a 35mm yellow gold case with a slim, chronometer-rated movement, the specifications of the new watch were so well calibrated that it was christened the Grand Seiko. Celebrating Grand Seiko’s official independence from Seiko in 2017, a limited edition of the first GS model was launched, followed by three unlimited models in 2020. During Watches & Wonders 2024, Grand Seiko releases a new 50-piece limited edition of its groundbreaking 1960s model with a rose gold case and a dark blue dial.

Although the diameter is 3mm larger than the original, the 38mm Grand Seiko SBGW314 is considered a very compact watch by today’s standards. Another factor that separates the ‘new’ 1960 Grand Seikos from the original is the use of precious metals. While the original was made of gold-plated steel, the latest model is crafted in 18k mirror-polished rose gold and shares the same height of 10.9mm as the other members of this family. While it’s ever so slightly above the purist’s standard height for a dress watch, it is considered a slim dress watch in Grand Seiko’s world. The case, with its slender bezel and gently curving lugs, is beautifully finished with Zaratsu-polished surfaces, producing the famous distortion-free reflections associated with Grand Seiko watches.

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The rich blue sunray-brushed dial is described as “Hoshizukiyo” by Grand Seiko, the Japanese term for a starry night. Like the original 1960 GS, the dial is slightly domed and protected by a double-domed sapphire crystal. As tradition mandates, the shockingly sharp faceted hour and minute hands with mirror-polished bevels and satin-brushed surfaces are classic GS, matching the finishings on the applied and double-faceted rose gold indices. To follow the curvature of the dial, the minutes hand and the central seconds hand are slightly bent. Honouring the original, the ‘Diashock xx jewels’ and star (indicating that the indices are 18k gold) are printed above the 6 o’clock index, and the inscription Grand Seiko is engraved on the dial at noon.

The sapphire exhibition caseback reveals Grand Seiko’s manual-winding calibre 9S64. With its 4Hz frequency, magnetic resistance to 4,800 A/m and a 3-day power reserve, the accuracy is rated at +5 to -3 seconds per day.

Availability & Price

The Grand Seiko SBGW314 Hoshizukiyo comes on a dark blue crocodile leather strap with a triple-folding clasp in rose gold; an additional brown crocodile strap is included in the package. The SBGW314 is a limited edition of 50 pieces and will be available exclusively from Grand Seiko Boutiques from 1 July 2024. The retail price is EUR 28,900.

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