2020.11.4
THE STORY of KINTARO HATTORI

SEIKO GINZA 2020

MESSAGE

This year marks the 160th anniversary of the birth of Seiko’s founder, Kintaro Hattori, in Ginza in 1860. In this commemorative year, Seiko is launching the Ginza 2020 Project to promote the Seiko brand and culture pertaining to time and timepieces, from the Ginza district, the place where Kintaro founded and built up the Seiko company.

The project comprises two parts: the renovation of the Wako specialty store main building after 12 years, and the renewal and relocation of the Seiko Museum to Ginza.

Through these activities, we are going back to our founder’s roots to once again promote the Seiko brand to the people of the world from Ginza, our birthplace.

Moreover, the high-ranking Kabuki performer Ichikawa Ebizo, who is going to succeed the stage name of Ichikawa Danjuro Hakuen of the world-famous Kabuki-za theater, has been appointed as an ambassador of the Seiko Group. Together, we will proclaim the craftsmanship, culture, and traditions of Japan throughout the land and throughout the world.

Chairman & Group CEO, CCO
Shinji Hattori

An introduction to our ambassador
NEW AMBASSADOR

Ichikawa Ebizo appointed ambassador of the Seiko Group

Ichikawa Ebizo is a highly regarded actor and performer of Kabuki, a treasure of Japan’s traditional performing arts, and is also heir to Naritaya Ichikawa family, Kabuki Soke, the head family. He started his career in 1983 with his first appearance at the Kabuki-za theater in Ginza. Since then, he has sought to take on new challenges while also following the traditions of Kabuki, and in the process he has gained numerous fans around the world. Our shared connection to Ginza, our mutual regard for both tradition and innovation, and our various activities rooted in the culture of “time,” as represented in both the performing arts and timepieces, respectively, are what led us to appoint Ichikawa Ebizo as our ambassador. Ichikawa Ebizo will participate in various events for Seiko Group companies such as Seiko Watches, which handles the Grand Seiko brand, and Wako, Seiko’s luxury specialty store, as well as activities of the Seiko Holdings Group to present the appeal of the Seiko brand’s value to the world.

Ichikawa Ebizo
wako

2020.8.6 THU GRAND OPEN

Renovation of the Wako Main Building
WAKO RENEWAL

After 12 years of continual service, the main building of the Wako specialty store has undergone a complete renewal to create bright, open spaces that let in natural lighting. The 1st floor, which already underwent renovations on June 24, is now home to the Wako Watch Square, which brings together an array of watches from 14 select brands, both Japanese and imported. Also, on the 2nd floor of the store, we have opened the Wako Watch & Jewelry Square. The Wako Watch Square includes the newly created Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako, which is the pinnacle of Grand Seiko boutiques, and the Credor Salon, which boasts the very best and richest array of luxury watches and jewelry in Japan. The Wako Jewelry Square has a display of Wako jewelry and other jewelry carefully selected with Wako’s discerning eye for beauty.

4-5-11 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-8105

Nearest train station:
Tokyo Metro Ginza Station, a short walk from Exits A9 and A10, directly connected to Exit B1

Opening hours:
10:30 to 19:00 every day (except new year holiday period)

Official site

RENEWAL OUTLINE

1F
Display window

Display window

The see-through window displays housed between the two curving glass panes present a new and inviting face to the people passing by on the streets of Ginza.

The Wako Watch Square

The Wako Watch Square

With a variety of watches on display from 14 select brands, both Japanese and imported, including a full line of Grand Seiko watches, customers can purchase the watch of their choice while comparing various styles and brands at the same time and in the same setting.

2F
The Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako

The Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako, a mecca for Grand Seiko enthusiasts

Positioned as the very pinnacle of Grand Seiko boutiques, this is a truly unique boutique where customers can immerse themselves in the world of Grand Seiko.

Watch entertainment showcasing Grand Seiko lifestyle

Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako is a space designed to represent four living spaces within the home of the host who has a deep love for the Grand Seiko brand. The library houses a display of some 20 important, historical models that tell the story of Grand Seiko, as well as documents that were used in determining design specifications and samples of watch dial prototypes from the time of development. It is a corner where guests can come to experience the philosophy of Grand Seiko. The lounge area is designed to represent a space that presents the hobbies of the owner, with the display including such items as an enlarged model of a new Spring Drive caliber, the disassembled parts of a new mechanical caliber, and brand books not available for sale. At the bar counter of watches, which has an archive display of the various special Wako limited edition Grand Seiko watches, guests can order a Grand Seiko Bespoke Watch (18-karat gold or platinum models only). The provision of order-made Grand Seiko watches is a special service available at Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako. The living room area normally contains 30 to 40 current luxury models, such as items made with 18-karat gold and special limited goods.

Grand Seiko library Grand Seiko library

Grand Seiko library

The lounge area The lounge area

The lounge area, representing the owner’s hobby space

A bar counter A bar counter

A bar counter of watches where the world views of Wako and Grand Seiko resonate

A lineup of luxury models on display in the living room A lineup of luxury models on display in the living room

A lineup of luxury models on display in the living room,
the center of the home

The Seiko Museum

2020.8.19 WED OPEN

THE SEIKO MUSEUM GINZA THE SEIKO MUSEUM GINZA

The Seiko Museum of time and timepieces is being relocated from Sumida-ku to Ginza, the birthplace of Seiko, where it will re-open as a corporate museum comprising six floors, from the 1st basement to the 5th floor. On the facade of the museum, a grand 5.8-meter high pendulum clock, the Rondeau La Tour, will be unveiled. This museum is based on the Seiko Institute of Horology, set up within the Seikosha factory (now Seiko Clock Inc.) in 1981 as part of the activities commemorating the 100th anniversary of the company’s founding.

Seiko Namikidori Bld., 4-3-13 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-8105

Nearby train stations:
Tokyo Metro Ginza Station, 1-min walk from Exit B4

Opening hours:
10:30 to 18:00 (closed Mondays and new year holidays)*Prior booking is required.

Official site
The Rondeau La Tour

Rondeau La Tour – a magnificent pendulum clock with automated dolls
The Rondeau La Tour

The Rondeau La Tour

The Rondeau La Tour is a grand 5.8-meter high pendulum clock. Based on the design theme of the pendulum, every hour on the hour, automated dolls and cogwheels give a performance accompanied by a lightshow.

Floor Guide

Floor Guide

Each of the six floors of the museum contains exhibits and presentations related to time and timepieces, with a particular theme for each floor. The Kintaro Hattori Room is an exhibit where visitors can follow the challenges and efforts of Kintaro Hattori, known as the “King of Timepieces in the East,” and learn about our founder’s philosophy, “always one step ahead of the rest.” The museum also includes displays of genuine articles from Seiko’s history, presenting key products, from Seiko’s earliest wall clocks to modern products. Visitors can also experience the technology involved in sports timing, which is inseparably connected with the history of Seiko timepieces, and the technology of Seiko’s sports watches that have supported so many adventurers in taking on extreme challenges. A feature of the Seiko Museum is its rich collection of exhibits, including sundials and combustion clocks, mechanical tower clocks of the middle ages, and Japan’s own unique traditional wadokei clocks. It is a facility where visitors can enjoy learning not only about Seiko products, but about the history of time and timepieces in general.

SEIKO GINZA HISTORY SEIKO GINZA HISTORY

Kintaro Hattori
  Always one step ahead of the rest Seiko's founder, Kintaro Hattori

1881

Founding
Kintaro Hattori establishes the K. Hattori
clock shop (now Seiko Holdings Corporation).

1894

Completion of the original clock tower

Completion of the original clock tower

The new store built on the corner of Ginza 4-chome block, with its iconic clock tower, immediately becomes a landmark of Ginza.

1923

The Great Kanto Earthquake

The Great Kanto Earthquake

The factory and store are completely destroyed. The company replaces all watches that were held for repair and destroyed in the disaster with brand new watches free of charge, thereby gaining the firm trust of the public.

1932

Completion of the second clock tower

Completion of the second clock tower

The clock tower becomes a symbol of reconstruction after the Great Kanto Earthquake. Through extensive anti-earthquake reinforcement, remodeling, repairs, and maintenance, the appearance of the clock tower has been preserved almost exactly as it was, and it remains a familiar and well-loved landmark of Ginza to this day.

1952

Wako store display window

Wako store display window

As the window display is changed with each season, it becomes a popular spot for people on the street to pause and enjoy the sight. Even today it remains a favored meeting spot.

1953

Broadcasting of Japan’s first television commercial

Broadcasting of Japan’s first television commercial

The commercial features a cartoon character rooster demonstrating how to wind an alarm clock, followed by the sound of the 7 pm chime and the image of the Wako clock tower.

1984

Installation of the Mullion Clock in Yurakucho

Installation of the Mullion Clock in Yurakucho

This is Japan’s first large-scale marionette clock, with a diameter of 2.6 meters. The automaton performance draws great crowds and sparks a boom in marionette clocks.

2011

The Great East Japan Earthquake

The Great East Japan Earthquake

Every year since the earthquake, Seiko holds the “Sound of ‘Wa’ Concert in a Spirit of Harmony to Support Eastern Japan,” during which time the Wako store window displays cards with messages of encouragement written on them. On March 11, at 2:46 pm, the date and time of the earthquake, the “Bell of Prayer and Hope” is rung for one minute.

2018

Opening of Seiko Dream Square

Opening of Seiko Dream Square

From the heart of Ginza, the birthplace of Seiko, to the world; a hands-on center for Seiko watches that promotes the appeal of Seiko brand products directly to customers.

2020

Opening of Seiko Museum Ginza

Opening of Seiko Museum Ginza

The Seiko Museum is relocated to Ginza, the birthplace of Seiko, and re-opened as a corporate museum comprising six floors, from the 1st basement to the 5th floor.

Renovation of the Wako Main Building

Renovation of the Wako Main Building

The Wako Watch Square is opened on the 1st floor, bringing together an array of watches from 14 brands, and the Grand Seiko Boutique Flagship Wako is opened on the 2nd floor.

A map of Seiko locations around Ginza
GINZA MAP

Kintaro Hattori 160th anniversary commemorative film
THE STORY of KINTAROHATTORI THE STORY of KINTAROHATTORI

Seiko’s founder, Kintaro Hattori, was a man who lived the philosophy of striving to always stay one step ahead of the rest, and through his ceaseless effort and refusal to give up, no matter how harsh the challenges he faced, he achieved his dream of creating timepieces for the people. This short film depicts the drama of his dreams and challenges.