The ZENEA Ula Diver – A New Microbrand

 Interview with Jason from ZENEA Watches 

Please tell me a little about yourselves. Where do you come from, where do you live, what are you doing a single day, your hobbies?

ZENEA Watches is based out of Toronto, Canada. I started working on the ZENEA Watch brand in 2019 and started devoting myself full time to the venture in January of 2020.   I have been very fortunate to have had a great career before ZENEA and had the opportunity to travel to most parts of Canada for work and also to many different areas of the world for personal travel. 

My experiences I have gathered from my travels have influenced how I see the world and even inspired some of the design elements of my first line of watches.   I am a certified scuba diver and an avid downhill skier.  I also enjoy cycling and almost any outdoor activity that gives me the opportunity to enjoy the incredible natural scenery which is abundant across most parts of Canada.

When did the idea for your own watch brand come up? What was the trigger?!

I have been a watch enthusiast and collector for over 15 years and have around 60 wrist watches that make up my personal collection of timepieces.  The collection is very eclectic and is comprised of newer timepieces as well as several interesting vintage timepieces. 

Since launching my own brand I’m usually wearing a ZENEA watch on the wrist these days, but I still enjoy wearing other brands from my personal collection from time to time.  I own several microbrand watches so the idea of creating my own brand always had appeal to me.  

When I had the opportunity to pursue creating my own brand a bit over a year ago, I did not hesitate as it has been something I have wanted to do for a long time.  Being able to bring joy to someone through the ownership of a ZENEA Watch is an amazing feeling and the best part of this business.   

Tell me some specifications about the watch! 

Our first line of watches is the ZENEA Ula Diver (Ula is pronounced “you-la”) Ula actually means sea jewel in Celtic for those that may wonder what the name means.

We are incredibly pleased with the first production pieces that have been built by our factory partner in Switzerland and I ensured that the Dive watch had all the best features that would make the watch amazing.

Case: 41mm
Lug to lug: 48 mm
Lug Width: 20 mm
Case Material: 316L surgical grade stainless steel
Case thickness: 12.00 mm
Crown: 5.5 mm screw down crown
Crystal: Sapphire glass with inner layer anti-reflective (AR) coating
Water resistance: rating to 300 meters, 1000 feet or 30 ATM
Movement: Swiss ETA 2824 automatic movement
Frequency: 28,800 vibrations per hour
Lume: Swiss Superluminova BGW9
Bezel insert: Ceramic with lumed markers, numbers and pip
Bracelet: 316 L stainless solid link bracelet with deployant clasp and quick release spring bars
Case back: Embossed design
Watch markers: Applied fully lumed custom markers
Warranty: Two-year warranty

How was the name and the logo created and what exactly does it mean?

Having owned many different timepieces, I knew the quality of the watch and the experience I wanted to create for other watch enthusiasts and clients. 

This is the end vision that I started with and I worked in reverse to put together all the elements that were needed to create a beautiful and exquisite watch along with an exceptional client experience.  This is actually where the brand name comes from, starting with the end and working back to create the watch  Z to A….ZENEA.

The logo is a stylized Z shaped like an hourglass to represent the passage of time. I’ve had others mention the Z also looks like an infinity symbol when flipped on its side, although this was unintentional many people have also identified with that which I think is great.

How did you come up with this design?

Dive watches have always been one of my favorite styles of watches.  They are very versatile in terms of style and environments where you can wear one.  Because of their water resistance ratings, you can wear them for almost any activity either on land or water.

The design philosophy of ZENEA is to create efficient and highly functional watches in both dial design and case/bracelet construction.  Being a Canadian brand, there are also some design elements that represent Canada. Specifically the second hand of the Ula Diver along with the 5 minute markers on the chapter ring and also the outer packaging for the watch box are all crafted in the same pantone colour as the Canadian flag.

The watch case back is also has an embossed image of two Heralidic Dolphins swimming in a never ending circle around the ZENEA  Z logo.  This is meant to represent the never ending nature and continuity of time.  A friend of mine who is an artist from Vancouver, B.C. Canada helped create the design for me. 

Heraldic Dolphins are often found on ancient maps from the middle ages and are prevalent in the architecture of many coastal communities in Europe. I felt they were a great symbol to represent the oceanic roots of dive watches.

Are you making the watches or you hired a professional watchmaker?

ZENEA timepieces are all assembled by our Swiss factory partner who is in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. They have been in business for many years and work with many recognized Swiss heritage brands. 

They have been a great partner and have helped us put together a watch that I am exceptionally proud of for our first timepiece that we have launched to market.  All the design is done by myself within Canada and our Swiss partner brings the watch to life.

Are you planning to make other types of watches as well or only dive watches?

ZENEA is currently working on the design of our next offering.  This will be a 39 mm dress watch that is almost a hybrid between a dress watch and a field watch.  We have some exciting colour ways and design elements planned and early feedback has been incredibly positive.

What do I or my readers have to do to get a watch from you as soon as possible?

The ZENEA Ula Diver is available now through our website https://www.zeneawatches.com

World wide shipping is included for free with all watch purchases and watches all come with an international two year warranty.

Please sign up with our email list to be notified of new developments or any promotions that we are running. You can also find us on Instagram @zeneawatches

What are the prices and the different options?

The ZENEA Ula Diver currently is available in five different options.

Four of the watches are priced at $759 US

ZENEA Ula Diver Volcanic Obsidian Black

ZENEA Ula Diver Japanese Gardens Blue

ZENEA Ula Diver Snowcap Classic White

ZENEA Ula Diver Ocean Hornet Yellow

We also have a Special Edition piece the ZENEA Ula Diver Time & Space Meteorite Dial

This piece is currently $979 US and is our most popular watch.

And what do you want for the future?

I love beautiful timepieces, I always have.  My goal with the ZENEA brand is to transform it into a legacy brand that brings enjoyment to tens of thousands of timepiece enthusiasts and clients all over the world.

We are on our way to doing that; it’s a long journey and are still working on growing the brand awareness with ZENEA while continuing to build our reputation within the watch enthusiast community and anyone that is looking to acquire a great timepiece for either themselves or someone special to them.

Do you want to mention anything else?

I really want to thank you Miklós for taking the time to put together the interview with me and creating the opportunity to talk about the ZENEA brand. It means a lot to me personally that I get to share information about ZENEA with your readers and the watch community at large.

I wish everyone has a wonderful day wherever you are and please do take a moment to check out our website or give us a follow on Instagram.

Warmest Regards,

Jason

Thank you for your interview!

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