BY HARLAN CHAPMAN-GREEN
Most of us love going on our summer holidays. Whether that’s to somewhere exotic overseas or just another part of the country we already live in, it’s the perfect time to zip off and see a bit more of our world. However, for some, the winter season is when the zipping off is done. The destination? Somewhere cold and hilly, usually. Think the powdery slopes of Hokkaido, the glistening trees of Colorado or the sheer drama of the Alps. This last destination inspired the collaboration between Swiss watchmaker Zenith and Fusalp, the French maker of luxurious outdoor apparel.
Fusalp recently celebrated its 70th anniversary and is renowned for its high-quality yet stylish gear. It’s difficult to find the correct balance with outdoor clothing such as coats and waterproof trousers. On the one hand, you don’t want your customers to look like they’re wearing a bin bag around, and you don’t want to go too far so they end up dressing like they’re in a Kanye West music video. Although I’m no fashion guru, I would say the products of the collaboration between these two brands look smart and classy. Fusalp is making a ski jacket, trousers, a full ski suit (their speciality), a ski helmet and some pullovers, all in both male and female sizes. The ski jacket has a special cuff with a zipper and an inner layer, allowing you to attach the watch to the inner layer for time reading but also allowing you to zip the gap shut when it gets too cold.
Zenith clearly liked this idea but realised that a blackened watch rubbing up against a metal zipper will remove the black coating. A ceramic case is used for the watch, measuring 41mm in diameter, and comes in either black with a black rubber strap or white with a matching white strap. The lines of the rubber strap are reflected in Fusalp’s clothing collection using decorative stitching. Water resistance is set at 100m.
Both watches feature a combination of the Zenith star motif, which we like on their watches a lot, and a snowflake which represents the alpine theme of the watch. Around the edge of the dial are the colours red, white and blue, representing the Tricoleur, the French flag, adding in the Fusalp connection to the watches.
Powering these is the self-winding Elite 670 calibre which has a 50-hour power reserve and a 4Hz beat rate with the Zenith star motif reflected on the rotor. 187 components have gone into making this calibre.
These watches are both limited in their production. Black models are limited to 300 examples worldwide and retails for CHF 9,900, meanwhile, the white version is limited to 100 examples at a price of CHF 10,900 although we’re not sure of the reason for this.
Visit Zenith here.