The Terra Cielo Mare Orienteering Cerro Torre is a climber's watch
There is nothing nicer than having four days of well-deserved relaxation before the end of a year that was both busy and crammed with personal achievements. Despite nearing the time when the best holidays of the year occur, the long weekend of December 8 is, for Italian people, a time for travelling and some sort of a pre-Christmas appetizer. I decided to spend my few days of holidays in Italy, eating, wearing, and driving Italian. I am often times travelling across Europe and Italian people love foreign things so much that, sometimes, they tend to forget how many nice things Italy has to offer. Two of my greatest passions are fuelled by my country itself; one of them is being told by the almost 500 articles that fill the pages of this magazine while the other passion has largely affected both my professional life and my youth; cars!
That's the reason why I decided to hire an Alfa Romeo Giulia car off a friend and former colleague from FCA and drive from Milan to Pisa; one of my youth's places that I have looked forward to visiting again for quite a while. During my short trip "on the road" I was wearing one of Terra Cielo Mare's most successful models - the Orienteering – in one of its very peculiar versions -the Cerro Torre -. There are quite a lot of elective affinities between the two items; on one side, the Alfa Romeo Giulia is the "rebirth" car of a brand that "was looking for vengeance" ( the exact words that Sergio Marchionne uttered when he presented the car to the press), a car that has the ability to reconcile you with driving in a time when people sit at the wheel and it seems like they are able to do anything else but drive. This car is the worthy heir of the Giulia Super; the first car that my dad ever bought.
Terra Cielo Mare is the Italian brand par excellence in the world of watch-making, the brand that was able to instil the trust for many Italian entrepreneurs, who are now launching new watch-related projects. After all, us Italian, are the ones who used to dictate matters when it came to fashion, it was in Italy that the Milano mesh was born and the Royal Oak was first conceived and, for at least twenty years, Italy has been Rolex's most important European market.
Terra Cielo Mare has always crafted peculiar timepieces that are thought out with an out-of-the-box-approach and, among these watches, the Orienteering probably best represents the summary of all the brand's ideas and the Cerro Torre is the first limited series that brings in an element of extreme rareness. The manufacturer received a piece of rock from the Cerro Torre mountain - a peak located in Southern Patagonia that is famous with mountaineers and climbers alike - from the Ragni di Lecco ("Spiders of Lecco"); a mountaineering group that has tight partnership and friendship links with the brand.
The piece of rock was then used to craft the dial of twenty Orienteering timepieces. We have already devoted an article to the features of this watch; it is a three-hands-timepiece that allows the user to determine their location through a solar compass, some sort of a challenge issued by the analogue and feature-less world to the world of digital and complications-at-any-cost.
Not only has the Cerro Torre been the brand's most important collector's item since its inception but this timepiece has also brought along the new logo on the dial that replaces the extended writing and does justice to titanium that appears, for the very first time, in its original colour and with a new fabric-made strap. This combination gives the watch a "frozen grey" shade that makes it look more like a hi-tech timepiece rather than a simple watch for explorers.
And that's not everything as the insert made from the rock extracted from the mountain makes it impossible or extremely difficult to carve out a date window on the dial and that's one of the reasons why it is missing despite the 2824 being equipped with the date disc (the other Orienteering timepieces feature a date). It also becomes redundant to outline the Arabic numbers as they would take away visibility from the most important element; the raw piece of rock coming from the top of the Cerro Torre, on which the brand added its colour contrasting logo that, in my opinion, is not black enough, and the two writings "Northern Hemisphere" and "Southern Hemisphere" that are not very visible but necessary to use the solar compass. The Terra Cielo Mare Orienteering Cerro Torre costs 2,850 euros and will be crafted in 20 pieces. It is Luca Fontana's idea: the brand's CEO and a big fan of mountaineering and climbing that has thus created 20 unique collector's items.
(Photo credit: Horbiter®'s proprietary photo-shooting)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®