Steel Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 1969 Cohiba Edition Watch Replica was located in Havana’s Old Town, and as such, corporate real fábrica de tabacos clients commissioned countless custom-dial watches with logos such as the classic Partagas script to be given as executive and retirement gifts. Vintage Cuervo y Sobrinos, mostly from the 1950s, pop up often on auction sites. Today, the modern incarnation of CyS names its models after cigar vitolas (the unique cigar measures that combine length, girth, and shape), and most of them come in a humidor, not just any old box.
First things first, though: Fine hand-rolled cigars paired with fine watches are, of course, nothing new. Then, there was Cuervo y Sobrinos. What Cartier was to Paris, Bulgari to Rome, and Tiffany & Co. to New York, Cuervo y Sobrinos was to (pre-Castro) Havana.
Second, this isn’t even the first Zenith El Primero Watch Replica — about which, more in a moment. But with the fiftieth anniversary of the most iconic post-revolution Cuban cigar brand at hand, Zenith (which has been busy in the vintage motorsports world of late) has very much made the right move here.
A little history: Cigars and wristwatches have been sold side by side since 1932. As the city’s top purveyor of jewelry and timepieces — Churchill, Hemingway, and Clark Gable were clients — CyS worked with a number of Swiss watchmakers (Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Universal Genève among them) that produced both double-signature and private-label timepieces.
In The Cigar Report, a quarterly periodical I once edited, I wrote a series of pieces entitled “Watch in a Box,” the box in question being a cigar box or humidor. The magazine itself was murdered by the 2008 financial crisis, but “Watch in a Box” could have lived, theoretically, pretty much forever.
That was the year Zenith Watch Replica. patented its first wristwatch (Dunhill pocket watches debuted in 1903; watches and clocks set into cigar and pipe lighters came right after). Dunhill, now a Richemont company, was far more a gentleman’s tobacconist up through the 2000s than the modern English men’s fashion house it has become over the last handful of years.