Zenith: Back to the Future

by Pressroom

Rare and exquisite vintage timepieces have been lovingly restored as part of the Zenith Icons Collection.

In the world of the chronograph, Zenith is the stuff of legends. In 1969, the Swiss luxury watchmaker forever changed the world of watchmaking with the unveiling of the El Primero, the world’s first automatic high-frequency chronograph calibre, regarded as the automatic chronograph calibre par excellence.

The idea of owning one of these original 1969 timepieces would have seemed a preposterous proposition, given its exceeding rarity and limited numbers. But in 2021, Zenith launched Zenith Icons, a curated collection of rare and highly sought-after vintage watches that have been sourced, restored and certified by the Manufacture.

“We are acquiring historical timepieces from sources who have cherished them for a very long time and allowing others the opportunity to enjoy them,” said Zenith CEO Julien Tornare. “These rare pieces can now embark on a second life using existing resources at the Manufacture, and I’m really excited to share these pieces of history with our customers.”

A trio of G581, G582 and A384 from this collection is now being showcased at the Zenith boutique at Marina Bay Sands, where you can make an appointment for a viewing, and possibly purchase.

The value proposition is clear: enjoy the peace of mind regarding the provenance and authenticity of the vintage timepieces, as well as knowing they have been rigorously sourced and restored faithfully by the Manufacture with complete traceability.

As an additional layer of guarantee, each watch from the Icons collection comes with a three-year warranty offered by Zenith, which covers the movement and any manufacturing defects and normal wear-and-tear of components.


Retail Price: SGD 74,500

When Zenith launched the El Primero in 1969, almost everyone was fixated on the

triptych of stainless steel chronographs that would go on to make history. But little do people know that there were 150 pieces made in 18K gold that were produced a week before the stainless steel ones. This model is, in fact, part of the first El Primero watches made in 1969 and only made in one single batch.


Retail Price: SGD 74,500

The sister model of the G581, this variant is similar except that it features a golden dial, making the otherwise sporty-looking chronograph dressy and elegant. It is part of the very first El Primeros premiered by the Manufacture in 1969. But it is even more iconic thanks to its all-gold appearance. Together with the G581 and G381, it was manufactured in time for the Basel Fair, which took place in April 1969.


Retail Price: SGD 30,900

The A384 made its debut in 1969 as the face of the El Primero that figured on launch press cuttings and on the cover of the first El Primero brochures. It stands out with its “square barrel” case signed with the Zenith 4-pointed star logo and its “panda” dial – which has turned tropical in this case, making it all the more desirable.

Images courtesy of Zenith, artwork by Curatedition. All rights reserved.

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