News • 26 May 2023
Ulysse Nardin Makes a Splash at the Iconic Bondi Icebergs Pool
An unconventional place for an unconventional watch. Ulysse Nardin celebrates its newest marvel, the Freak ONE, at Bondi Beach’s iconic Icebergs Pool in Sydney.
Ulysse Nardin made mighty splash at Bondi Beach’s iconic Icebergs swimming pool on May 25, 2023. The Swiss watchmaker, in an exclusive partnership with The Hour Glass, has chosen the Australian seaside and its Icebergs Pool as the location to celebrate the latest addition to its iconic Freak collection. First unveiled at Watches and Wonders in Geneva in March 2023, the Freak ONE will be available through Ulysse Nardin’s exclusive partnership with The Hour Glass.
With this launch Down Under, the iconic timepiece meets its aquatic equivalent, at the Icebergs Pool in Sydney. First opened in 1929, the unheated pool – practically in the ocean – is naturally filled and refilled with seawater (hence the name “Icebergs”, called so for its cool temperature). Its name derives from the waves that periodically crash into it from the beach directly below, thrilling swimmers. The Icebergs Pool was a natural choice for Ulysse Nardin as it also echoes its commitment to protecting the Ocean.
The Hour Glass is thrilled to present the newest addition to Ulysse Nardin’s iconic Freak collection in such an unconventional and iconic place.
“Since 1846, Ulysse Nardin built its unique reputation as the unrivalled supplier for Marine instruments across oceans. Since then, it revolutionized watchmaking by carrying cutting edge technologies into fine watchmaking with silicon regulating organs in the Freak collection. We are absolutely delighted to be able to present this timepiece in such an emblematic location. The first global Freak event post Watches & Wonders and a premiere for Ulysse Nardin in Australia!” says Patrick Pruniaux, CEO of Ulysse Nardin.
Resetting the Boundaries Since 2001
The first Freak of 2001 was an unlikely iconoclast: a wild creation in a land of convention and conservatism. Because it had no dial, no hands, and no crown, there was only one name for it: Freak.
The Freak changed the perspective on watchmaking: it marked the first instance that a movement was deconstructed to express time on its own. The Freak was also the first wristwatch to incorporate a natural escapement with silicon parts, thereby ushering in the age of silicon in watchmaking.
The Embodiment of an Unconventional Mindset
Freak ONE is the quintessence of Freak: as the direct descendent of the original Freak 2001, it features its three signature characteristics: no crown, no hands, and no dial. Movement is king as it tells time.
The most thrilling element of the new Freak ONE is the oversized and highly complex, aerodynamic, and inertia-optimized balance wheel crafted entirely from one piece of silicon, and a lever escapement executed in DIAMonSIL (a patented form of diamond-coated silicon). This is the result of Ulysse Nardin’s unrivalled expertise in silicon technology and represents the single most advanced oscillator in the watch industry.
The Freak ONE is also the first Freak with an integrated rubber strap, made of 30 percent recycled rubber from production waste by BIWI, a local Swiss Jura based rubber straps manufacturer. It becomes Ulysse Nardin’s flagship watch and the Manufacture’s center of gravity as it defines its new independence.