MICRO MONDAYS: The Horizon Pilgrim is a diver inspired by drama on the high seasFergus Nash
Jules Verne is one of the most influential authors of all time for one main reason — adventure. At the time, nobody else had captured the childish sense of fantastical adventure that still translated to adult audiences, earning him the “father of science fiction” title twice over. Horizon, a young microbrand based in Singapore, released their first watch in 2021 — bravely named the Nautilus. Inspired by Verne’s novel Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, it captured the unique aquatic spirit of that book tinged with exploration. Their new follow-up the Horizon Pilgrim takes after a later novel called A Captain at Fifteen, with more emphasis on youthful drama and seafaring escapades.
The case of the Horizon Pilgrim is actually constructed from two modules, contributing to an overall chunky look that exudes robustness. The outer section of the wide lugs flares out slightly, with a mostly polished finish that elevates the watch into slight dressiness. There’s a thin section of brushing between the lugs, helping balance out the contrast which is also provided by the bezel. The outer bezel is flat with vertical brushing, adding to the intensely sporty look of this sculptural case. Two crowns are slightly sunken in, although they’re both given coin-edge grips for ease of use when wet.
The impression of the case might seem chunky, but the Horizon Pilgrim actually contains its dimensions neatly. There’s a 41mm diameter, which is perfect for a high-impact dive watch, but the lug-to-lug is only 47mm which should be very comfortable for average wrists and even smaller. Considering the depth of the dial and the structural nature of the case, it’s surprising that the Pilgrim is only 12.4mm thick including the domed sapphire crystal. As you would expect of a modern spec-driven diver, it’s rated for 200m of water resistance with a screw-down crown.
Given the wide sloping case, the external bezel, and an internal bezel to boot, the dial of the Horizon Pilgrim is actually pretty tiny. Considering that, it’s really impressive how much personality and punch Horizon have managed to give this watch. The applied hour markers are super bold without feeling cluttered, and the trapezoidal markers at the quarters are great for alignment at a glance. The hands are big and full of lume, and easy to tell apart. The counterbalance on the seconds hand is also a nice touch, showing that Horizon have great attention to detail. There are four colour schemes available which each bring their own personality to the design. The first is Blue Ocean in a charming navy, the second is Dark Ocean in black and aged lume, third comes Green Ocean for those who haven’t yet bought in on the trend, and fourth is called the Young Captain bearing a light turquoise.
If you take a close look at the 3 o’clock marker, you’ll notice that it’s sunken and it doesn’t always say 3. That’s because this is actually a date display which has been integrated into the marker, and I’m gobsmacked that I haven’t seen this done before. It seems like such a simple and well-executed concept, providing all of the utility of a date window with none of the symmetrical obstruction. Horizon prove their design nous even further with the lack of unnecessary text on the dial, bearing simply a printed logo and the Pilgrim script. My only nitpick would be a lack of minute markers on the inner-rotating bezel, meaning that you can only accurately time up to five-minute intervals.
Each of the Horizon Pilgrim variants come with a colour-corresponding FKM rubber strap fitted with quick release spring bars. The rubber has an open-back design that lets your wrist breathe, and a rugged, ridged surface. The buckle is signed with the Horizon logo and some more faceted geometry. Horizon have also released an original design steel bracelet that’s available from their website that is somewhat like an H-link but with three inner-connecting links, although it has straight end links for a more vintage appearance. If you want to try out some aftermarket options, you should easily find other 22mm straps that work well.
Paired with a Sellita SW200-1, the Horizon Pilgrim is taking no risks but reaping great rewards. The Swiss-made movement has proven itself to be a wonderful budget option, providing what was once considered luxury performance at attainable prices. A 38-hour power reserve is more than adequate for a daily wearer or weekend watch with its automatic winding, and the 4Hz beat rate presents a smooth sweep. Servicing will always be affordable in our lifetimes given the sheer amount of these movements on the market, and the timekeeping is easy to regulate if you’re not happy with the performance out of the box.
The Horizon Pilgrim pricing and availability:
The Horizon Pilgrim is available now on Kickstarter here for a few more days, or you can check out the Pilgrim on Horizon’s website here. Price: US$559 / SG$755 (Kickstarter) / US$899 / SG$1,210 (MSRP)
|Case Dimensions||41mm x 47mm x 12.4mm|
|Case Material||Stainless steel|
|Dial||Navy, black, green, turquoise|
|Power Reserve||38 hours|
|Availability||Available for pre-order on Kickstarter|
|Price||US$559 / SG$755 (Kickstarter) / US$899 / SG$1,210 (MSRP)|