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I’m not much of a watch person. Between 1995 and 2012, I’ve only owned two watches, and both of them were relatively nondescript, plain and unattractive. Recently though, my watch-wearing philosophy was completely overturned after trying on and falling in love with the ZIIIRO Celeste designer watch. ZIIIRO watches are beautiful to look at, with minimalism at the heart of their designs.
We’ll take a closer look at this (dare we say geeky?) watch and we’ll be giving it away at the end of this review. So if you’re looking to own a ZIIIRO Celeste watch, read on and join the giveaway.
At €149 a pop, I wouldn’t say that the ZIIIRO Celeste is an affordable watch. It may be relatively inexpensive compared to other designer brands, but for an unknown, the price may cause some potential buyers consider their purchase. With that said, there are currently a few geeky designer watch brands available online. Kisai instantly comes to mind, with watches from $99 to $199. We’ll be taking a look at a couple of watches from Kisai in a future article.
The ZIIIRO Celeste was delivered in a boring white carton box, but its contents is rather interesting. The watch is nestled in an attractive clear plastic case, with the Celeste peeking through.
The ZIIIRO Celeste is available in two themes: mono and coloured — and that just refers to its face. Each theme comes in two different colour options. You can get the mono design in either black or gunmetal (which is the one featured in this review). The coloured design comes in gunmetal or chrome.
After unwrapping the thick plastic film protecting the ZIIIRO Celeste, I finally establish physical contact with the watch. Instantly, I feel its weight and its remarkable build quality. There’s some substance there and I’m really quite drawn to it. Some products look really good in photos, but after they’re shipped to you, they turn out to be rather disappointing. Most of the time, they feel cheaper than they look. Not with the ZIIIRO Celeste. It seems to be both beautiful and well-crafted at the same time.
Some product feel cheaper than they look. Not with the ZIIIRO Celeste.
Fundamentally, ZIIIRO watches display no markings or hands on the clock face, in keeping with their minimalism motif. Instead, these watches implement moving rings to indicate the time. For the first few hours, guessing the time may be slightly tricky, but once you get into the groove, you’ll start appreciating how cool the design is. And others will too, I’m sure.
The stainless steel 40mm watch case sports a matte finish in gunmetal. Over on the other side of the watch, you’ll find a polished stainless steel case back. I really can’t iterate enough just how beautiful the watch is from every angle. The ZIIIRO Celeste is water resistant, up to 3ATM or 30 meters of water. Generally, that’s sufficient to withstand rain, perspiration and hand washing but the watch is not suited for swimming.
The bracelet is made of stainless steel mesh and features a hook-on clasp, and it should fit any normal adult wrist. It’s adjustable simply by shifting the position of the buckle on the bracelet. You’ll find complete step-by-step instructions on how to do this in the product manual.
The issue I had with the bracelet (and possibly metal watch bracelets in general) is the fact that it isn’t adjustable on the go, unlike straps. So it’s essential to adjust the position of the buckle to fit your wrist before leaving home, otherwise, you’ll have to endure an ill-fitted bracelet for the entire day, like I did.
Internally, the ZIIIRO Celeste is fitted with a Japanese Miyota 1L-26 quartz movement, with a two-pole stepping motor and is accurate to +/-20 seconds per month under normal conditions. It’s estimated to be off by about 4 minutes a year, but I haven’t had the time to personally test that yet. Read the Celeste’s specifications, if you’re so inclined.
Living with the ZIIIRO Celeste watch
I’ll admit, I quite like it. The ZIIIRO Celeste is a fashion statement. It’s the kind of watch you’d want to wear if you like people staring at you, and if you enjoy looking at their faces while they try to figure out the time. And that’s another thing I like about this watch — it’s geeky.
The mesh bracelet can take rather long to dry after getting wet. Most of the time, I’ll resort to removing the entire watch and wipe it dry. The clasp is quite easy to unbuckle — it doesn’t require fingers the size of toothpicks to get it off, which is nice. The case is pretty solid and is quite resistant to scuffs. Apparently, the glass is made of hardened mineral crystal, whatever that means.
Should you buy the ZIIIRO Celeste?
As you can probably tell by now, I’m completely sold on the watch. I absolutely love it. Even though it doesn’t display the date and second, I still love it.
It’s meant to be a simple, minimalist watch; and it checks all the right boxes in my book.