In 1984, Colnago celebrated 30 years of producing some of the world’s finest racing bicycles. In honour of the momentous occasion, the Cambiago concern released the elaborate Arabesque as a limited edition.
They were produced for only one year and as a result, they are highly prized by collectors. A superb example was picked up by Spain’s Vintage Luxury Bicycles who has restored it to a standard befitting of a king.
Vintage Luxury Bicycles was founded by Javier Jubete as a platform for his restorations of collectable bicycles. His gold-plated ‘Colnagold’ projects are consistently some of the most popular bikes on these pages.
As well as being the product of great passion, Javier’s spectacular creations are the result of a two-fold process: the restoration of the frame and the sourcing of period correct components — an undertaking that in this took about 18 months.
Most Arabesques were sold as framesets only, but a very limited number were made available with a matching pantographed groupset. As you’d imagine, accumulating these parts from the unspoken network of Campagnolo collectors is akin to a crusade.
As per the original, the gruppo is Campagnolo Super Record with superb detailing, such as gold clubs set into the cranks’ dust-caps, shifters, brake levers and seat post. This era groupset is most reminiscent of classical mechanical engineering.
Often you’ll hear “It’s only original once” before a restoration, but sometimes the chrome and steel is so pitted with rust that a full strip and repaint is acceptable — especially when performed by a master detailer like Carlos Campelo from Lanas Paint Shop.
Carlos referenced a genuine Colnago Régal paint scheme from 1984 for this one, and it’s quite unlike anything we’ve seen before. The fades and graphic pattern is flawless and provided a perfect base for reproduction decals.
Nearly as rare and expensive as the SR group is the Cinelli VIP set, which originally included a suede singles pouch for underneath the Unicanitor saddle, a matching bidon cover and handlebar wrap. A complete VIP set can fetch up to $6,000 on eBay.
Colnago’s Arabesque Régal is truly one of the most spectacular production bicycles ever made, this interpretation by Vintage Luxury Bicycles looks perfectly contemporary and still stylish after all these years.