For its latest new release of 2023, Hublot has teamed up with fellow Swiss brand Nespresso to create a watch made from recycled coffee pods. Sustainability is a growing trend across nearly every industry, and over the course of the last seven years, Nespresso has partnered with famous Swiss brands from other industries as part of its “Second Life” initiative to create products constructed from the same aluminum coffee capsules that are used by the brand’s espresso machines. Due to the single-use nature of coffee pods, Nespresso developed a specialized recycling system in 1991 that separates the coffee grounds from their aluminum containers, and this enables each material to be repurposed and used to create new products. The latest example of what exactly can be produced using reclaimed espresso pods is the Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin, which appears in a bright green colorway and features both recycled aluminum and the actual coffee grounds themselves used throughout its construction.

When it comes to its construction and features, the new limited-edition Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin (ref. 441.UG.5220.RX.NES23) follows in the footsteps of previous Big Bang Unico chronographs, and it could most closely be compared to the previous models with colorful anodized aluminum cases, such as the purple version that we previously reviewed right here. What this means is that you get a multi-component case that measures 42mm in diameter by 14.5mm thick, and it is crafted from aluminum with an internal container section and caseback made from recycled titanium for superior corrosion resistance and durability. Just like similar models, sapphire crystals are fitted to both the dial side of the watch and its caseback, while water resistance for the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin comes in at 100 meters. All of the other core design elements have been carried over from previous aluminum Big Bang Unico watches, including the color-matched crown and pushers located on the 3 o’clock side of the case, along with the Big Bang’s signature bezel with six exposed screws.

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Compared to previous aluminum Big Bang chronographs, the most obvious visual update to accompany the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin is its vibrant green color, which covers the entirety of its case and strap, along with also being used throughout its skeletonized dial and hands. This specific shade of green is the same hue used for Nespresso’s “Master Origins Peru Organic” coffee pod, and as a further design nod to this rather unusual collaboration, the green aluminum winding crown is signed with Nespresso’s famous “N” logo. Additionally, just like other aluminum Big Bang Unico models, the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin comes with two different green straps, including both a fabric strap with a Velcro-style closure and a textured rubber strap that is fitted with a titanium folding clasp. Additionally, since the case incorporates the brand’s One-Click strap changing system, the two straps can quickly be disconnected from the case by simply pressing the buttons located on the top of its angular integrated lugs.

While aluminum itself isn’t exactly a new material to Hublot’s lineup, 28% of the alloy used for the Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin comes from recycled Nespresso coffee capsules. Green anodized aluminum is used for the case, bezel, crown, and chronograph pushers, along with the loop for the fabric Velcro-style strap. Similarly, while previous aluminum Big Bang Unico chronographs have also been paired with both rubber and fabric straps, the two straps also incorporate materials that have been reclaimed from used Nespresso coffee pods. The green rubber strap consists of 4.1% coffee grounds and 8.2% recycled white rubber, with the rest of the material being of the same type of rubber that Hublot normally uses for its straps. Due to the use of coffee grounds in its construction, the rubber strap has a slightly speckled appearance, and if you look closely at the rubber, you can see small flakes suspended in the green material.

Meanwhile, the secondary fabric strap that comes with the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin offers a nearly identical overall design to the fabric straps fitted to previous aluminum Big Bang Unico chronographs, although this green version is manufactured with 100% recycled fabric. Produced in collaboration with SingTex (one of Nespresso’s partners that uses recycled coffee grounds to produce a fabric called Scafé), the fabric strap is composed of 5% coffee grounds mixed with 95% recycled polyester. While Scafé has been used for a variety of other products, its appearance on the new Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin represents the first time that this eco-friendly material has ever been used to create a watch strap, and given its high percentage of polyester, the included green Scafé strap will likely offer a similar overall wearing experience as other fabric straps that feature a largely polyester composition.

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The skeletonized dial and hands fitted to the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin are virtually identical to what can be found on other aluminum Unico chronograph models, although they now appear in Nespresso’s signature shade of green to match the case and strap. The overall layout of the dial remains entirely unchanged, and it features large Arabic numeral hour markers, a running seconds register at 9 o’clock, and a 60-minute counter sitting opposite it, with a date window placed inside at the 3 o’clock location. While the underlying design of this watch has been around for a few years, it reportedly took Hublot’s R&D team an entire year of working closely with Nespresso to achieve the blend of vibrant green hues that appear across the seven different materials used to create the case, dial, hands, and straps of the new Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin watch.

Powering the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin is the same Caliber HUB1280 Unico automatic movement that can be found inside the other chronograph models from the current-production series. Running at a frequency of 28,800 (4 Hz) with a power reserve of 72 hours, the Hublot Cal. HUB1280 Unico is a column wheel-controlled flyback chronograph movement, and this latest generation of in-house calibers is thinner than the brand’s original Unico movement series. The skeletonized dial and display caseback allow the movement to be viewed from both sides of the watch, and since the Cal. HUB1280 Unico features its column wheel mechanism on the dial side of the movement, its operation can be observed even while the timepiece is strapped to your wrist.

Just like the watch itself, the box for the new Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin also places an emphasis on sustainability, and it debuts a new style of packaging that will be used for all future Hublot collections. Known as the “Hublot Greenbox” case, the box is crafted entirely from oak (including its hinges), and the wood itself is traceable, with both its sourcing and production chosen to promote short supply chains. Designed to be reused for personal storage, the box features a removable interior that is made with 98% eco-friendly components, such as recycled fabrics, plastic yarns, and PET, along with reclaimed paper and cardboard that is eco-labeled. As a final espresso-related design touch, both the Hublot and Nespresso logos are applied to the wooden box using coffee grounds from recycled Nespresso pods.

Similar to both the turquoise and purple versions of Hublot’s aluminum-cased Unico chronograph, the new green Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin will be produced as a limited edition of 200 pieces. However, due to its use of coffee-themed recycled materials, the new Nespresso edition costs slightly more than its standard-production siblings with an official retail price of $24,100 USD. While the use of recycled materials is hardly a novel concept in watchmaking, the use of reclaimed coffee pods is certainly something you don’t see every day, and this rather extreme example of upcycling has specifically been done to draw attention to the fact Nespresso has a very robust system in place for recycling the byproducts of its machines. While they may start their life as single-use coffee capsules, these same raw materials can ultimately be used to create timepieces that will exist for multiple generations — provided that humans are mindful about remembering to recycle them. For more information on the Hublot Big Bang Unico Nespresso Origin, please visit the brand’s website

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