The historic brand Longines prides itself on making high quality watches with modern tech and often incorporating retro styling into the mix. Okay, a lot of watchmakers are doing that these days, but there aren’t many of them that have the historical credentials to back up their claims. Longines watches were celebrated for their futuristic design and forward-thinking mechanics pretty much since they got going in 1832. Hodinkee is consistently one of the most popular watch/lifestyle blogs in the world. They started in 2008 and take their name from the Czech word for wristwatch: hodinky. For 2023, Longines and Hodinkee have collaborated to make the Longines Spirit Zulu Time x Hodinkee.
You might be wondering why we at WristReview are talking about this watch, considering that Hodinkee is a rival blog to us, but they’re friendly with us when our paths do cross. Also, to be fair here, we aren’t really rivals; Hodinkee has a much larger audience, has a physical presence around the world and is also a retailer of pre-owned watches and a digital authorised dealer for new ones. I like to think that we offer unique thoughts and views in our work, though this doesn’t always align with what the executive bigwigs in Switzerland want.
The Spirit Zulu Time is an attractive piece at 39mm x 13.5mm, it’s in keeping with the current trend in watch design which is to undo the previous current trend which was making all watches enormous and overstyled. Overstyled isn’t what I’d use to describe this, but it has style with its brushed and polished titanium case and bracelet. There’s also a large crown, which should make it a bit easier to use with gloves on; Hodinkee photoshoots always seem to have leather gloves in them, so I’m guessing that a large crown was a must for them.
Inside the watch is the calibre L844.4, a self-winding movement with a 3.5Hz beat rate and a power reserve of around 72 hours. It’s based on an ETA A31.411 but no doubt has been modified here. As well as the time and date, this movement also has a 24-hour hand which can be adjusted on the fly with a quick-setting system, the date will also adjust forwards or backwards, too. Coupled with the 24-hour bezel with its bi-directional movement, this watch can be used to determine the time in up to three timezones at once, you just need to know the difference in hours between local time and the target time.
This watch is limited to 500 examples and has a retail price of $3,800 . We’d like to congratulate Longines and Hodinkee on their latest limited edition watch, it looks smart and is sized well. The minimalism works along with the contrasting colours on the dial.