Orient Place

Orient Place

Tuesday 23 April 2019

New Orient Heritage Gothic and Semi-Skeleton Models

As previewed exclusively on our recent post, new models are today being announced officially by Orient, all bearing the "Orient Star" badge.

The first models announced for spring / summer release, are a new limited edition Heritage Gothic, new versions of Orient's "contemporary" Semi-Skeleton, and the new ladies' semi-skeleton.

The limited edition Heritage Gothic comes in rose gold-plated steel case with a navy blue dial. It's a classic combination that's become very popular recently, and other than the white date window it looks very good. This version, ref. RK-AW0005L, is limited to 1,000 units, of which 300 will be sold in Japan and 700 available worldwide. Price is about 750 USD.

Two new models will be added to the Contemporary Semi-Skeleton line-up. This family of models that contain the Orient's latest 50 hour movement was originally introduced on bracelets only, and the new models would be the first to be offered on leather strap, with a folding clasp – slightly reducing their official price to around 570 USD.

The new models, ref. RK-AT0006L (blue dial) and RK-AT0007N (grey dial) are not limited quantity.

Last but not least, two new models are added to the Ladies' classic semi-skeleton. These elegant 30.5 mm models have until now been offered with Roman numerals on the dial, and the new models feature Arabic numerals for the first time, which may appeal to many.

Both models feature a nicely convex silver dial, with ref. RK-ND0006S featuring a gold-plated case and priced at around 450 USD, while RK-ND0007S is stainless steel and will set you back around 410 USD.

So, that's it for today – keep following the blog for more news and updates!

Thursday 18 April 2019

Message From Orient to the Blog Readers

As we reported yesterday, the blog had been approached by Orient, who kindly offered us access to information and resources. For our anniversary, we asked whether an Orient executive would agree to share with us some of their thoughts about the past, present and future of the brand. We received a very positive response from Wiebke Bird, Senior Business Manager at Orient, which we can now share with our readers.

About Orient's independence as a brand

“ORIENT became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Epson two years ago and the brand has been supported, both in terms of distribution and marketing, ever since. ORIENT continues to produce all its automatic movement in its own, dedicated factory in Japan, with some assembly in its China-based factory. It is very important for us to maintain ORIENT’s independence in this regard. In fact, the last two years have seen ORIENT’s watch lines consolidate and focus on the models we do better than anyone else with great value for money, quality movements and distinctive designs. ”

About Orient's current models

“This is especially apparent in further additions and developments in the ORIENT Classic collection, which our fans have dubbed the ‘Bambino’. The ORIENT Classic with Small Seconds (RA-AP0003S) is available in five variations and is a great addition to the iconic ORIENT ‘Bambino’ offer. More recently the ORIENT Classic Date (RA AC0009S and RA-AC0008S) has expanded the appeal of the ‘Bambino’ with a smaller, 36.4mm case and a bracelet strap that attracts both male and female ORIENT customers.

“We are also highly regarded globally for the ORIENT Sports Diver Style collection, which has seen new colour variations for 2019 such as forest green (RA-AA0004E) and a popular black and gold variation (RA-AA0005B). The ORIENT Sports Diver Style ‘Big Mako’ (RA-AA0009L) with a 43.6mm case has also been a statement addition to the collection.

“At a higher price point, the ORIENT Sports JIS 200m Diver – launched in 2018 – continues to wow thanks to its automatic in-house Calibre 40N5A with a 40-hour power reserve and indicator. The black and gold-plated stainless steel variant (RA-EL0003B) is perhaps the most coveted.

“Our distinctive Sun and Moon models, which were introduced seven years ago, have developed year-on-year with the latest variation featuring an ‘open heart’. This model from 2018 represents the first time an ‘open heart’ and Sun and Moon complication were put together on the same ORIENT dial. There is also a new model to look out for this summer – the RA-AK03 – with design references that refer back to the original ET0P design, but with a more contemporary feel.”

About Orient Star

“Last year saw the evolution of ORIENT STAR in a number of ways. The ORIENT STAR Heritage Gothic (RE-AW0006S) has captured the imagination of long-term and new collections thanks to its revival of the gothic font used on an original ORIENT STAR model from 1957. This year, we are pleased to introduce a new ORIENT STAR Heritage Gothic (RE-AW0006L) with a rose gold-plated stainless steel case, deep navy dial, finely detailed white accents in the chapter ring, and a calfskin strap. This piece is limited to 1,000 worldwide.

“There’s also the ORIENT STAR Modern Skeleton (RE-AV0003L) – the hero timepiece of this year’s ORIENT WATCH Showcase in Basel. It contains the automatic in-house Calibre F6F44, with a 50 hour power reserve and indicator.

“We are pleased to launch the first ladies’ timepiece in the ORIENT STAR collection too – the 30.5mm ORIENT STAR Cygnus (RE-ND0006S and RE-ND0007S). It took our watchmaking specialists many months to refine a new movement for semi-skeleton, based on the Calibre 55C40. Polishing and finishing such a petite design is a challenge, however our highly-skilled craftsmen made it possible at an affordable price. The timepiece has a classic design with a bombe dial and box glass, resulting in a soft and feminine silhouette.
“Looking ahead, ORIENT STAR will be expanded with the ORIENT STAR Sports Outdoor (RE-AU0201E) – a take on the classic field watch design. It offers a 50 hour power reserve, anti-reflective sapphire crystal, water resistance of 100 metres and second hand hacking. Those who appreciate the field watch will also enjoy the new successor models to ET0N, the ORIENT Sports Field (RA-AK0401L), which will be available this year with NATO-style and leather straps. ”

Message to Orient Place Blog readers

“We are pleased that orientplace.blogspot.com is offering a destination for ORIENT fans around the world and we look forward to seeing more reviews of our timepieces in the coming months.”

And yes, we definitely intend to post more reviews of new and old Orient watches, here on the blog! We thank Orient for sharing this information with us (and the photos presented above), including those interesting hints concerning upcoming models.

Wednesday 17 April 2019

Orient Place Blog's First Anniversary

Everyone likes to celebrate anniversaries! Orient do… and so do blogs :)

I started this blog exactly one year ago, on April 17, 2018, with the purpose of sharing as much Orient-related information with the community of Orient watch owners and fans of the brand: reviews, news, tales of the brand's history, and various other topics.

It turned out that the brand does indeed carry such a community of people wanting to learn more, and that such a source of information providing an insight into the brand's past and present (and as much as possible, future) was badly sought after.

During the blog's first 12 months, we've had more than 25,000 visits, an average of more than 2,000 per month. Thirty five stories were posted on the blog, accompanied by around 80 original photos (and plenty of catalog ones…)

The most popular stories posted (based on direct entries, so not counting people who viewed the story while it showed on the blog's main page) were –

·         In third place, New Orient Star Models for 2019 – apparently many of you (866 direct entries) were intrigued by Orient's new models!
·         Runner up with 884 direct entries, Dress Watches and Orient – not surprising, considering Orient's dress watches (such as the Bambino) are among the brand's most iconic and popular models…
·         And in the first place, the most popular story with 914 direct entries - The "Map Dial" Orient World Diver ! and no wonder that it is, as who can resist the charm of this amazing vintage work of art?

We also had plenty of activity on our Facebook page, and in case you haven't already, please follow the page! Besides being a very convenient way of getting notified of new blog posts, we also occasionally post additional content there, like photos, and links to interesting watches showing up for sale.

Interestingly, the Facebook post that got the most engagement on our page was the one referring to the list of modern RoyalOrient movements, compiled and published by the blog. So yes, Orient fans also seem to have saved a place in their heart for the now hibernating royal sub-brand…

And this here is our top liked Instagram photo! :)

What's also quite exciting is that recently, Orient have learned about the blog and have reached out to us. This is great news for the blog, as we now have a direct link to information right from the source. While the blog promises to retain its neutrality, so for instance all product reviews we would post here will always be 100% objective, there is no doubt that being acknowledged by the brand is really cool – as well as likely to be very helpful in the future.

As part of this relationship, we have asked an Orient executive to share with us some of their thoughts about the past, present and future of the brand. Our request was kindly accepted, and tomorrow we will be sharing this with you – rest assured this will be interesting, as we got a scoop, in the form of first details of new and upcoming models!

Okay, then. We paused to celebrate our anniversary, but now we must move on. In coming weeks, you can expect some very interesting articles here on the blog… we'd be talking about Orient's homage watches; we'll take a look at the brand's mechanical chronographs; we'd be reviewing more watches, new and old, and – stay tuned as we've got a very, very, rare Orient heading our way!

As always – we're also listening to our readers and followers. Tell us (here in comments, or on our Facebook page) what more topics would you like the blog to cover and discuss?