Interview with Peter from Nomadic Watches
Please tell me a little about yourselves. Where do you come from, where do you live, what are your hobbies?
Hi Miklós, thanks for inviting me, it’s a pleasure to speak with you today.
I’m Peter and I’m the founder of Nomadic Watches. I’m from a small town by the sea, just outside of Belfast in Northern Ireland. I love surfing, paddle boarding, hiking, CrossFit and especially travelling.
When did the idea for your own watch brand come up? What was the trigger?
I’ve always been fascinated by watches, my dad has a modest collection with some lovely pieces and as a child he used to tell me about how his Rolex didn’t use batteries, that just blew my mind! After a long career in precision engineering, I wanted to use my experience to create a serious tool watch capable of keeping up with my adventures, good looking enough to wear to the office and that wouldn’t break the bank.
How was the name and the logo created and what exactly does it mean?
I’ve always been an adventurer and have travelled all over the world for inspiration, but have always had a deep connection with my hometown of Belfast. It has such an inspiring history of industrial triumph, as well as resilience and hope despite conflict.
When searching for the name I really wanted to capture that spirit of adventure which the brand stands for but keep a link to Belfast. I would often walk through the docks on my lunch breaks to get inspiration and when I saw the SS Nomadic one day it just clicked. The SS Nomadic was the tender ship for the Titanic which was built in Belfast’s shipyards, and has since been restored and opened as a museum.
To create the logo and develop the brand, I worked with an incredible local designer, Mark Bosket, who was able to refine some of my ideas, advise me, and create something outstanding. The subtle break in the ‘N’ creates arrows symbolizing moving forwards and making progress.
I know you recently revealed a new dive watch called the “Maraí 401”. Tell me some specifications about the watch!
The Maraí 401 boasts some seriously impressive specs. I’m certainly not a watch snob, but I can’t stand anything poor quality. If I’m buying a luxury watch, I want to know it’s built to last a lifetime, so I wasn’t willing to compromise on quality at any stage of the design process.
It features a high beat Swiss automatic movement (the Sellita SW200-1) so it winds itself and is literally powered by adventure. Sapphire crystal specially domed to withstand extreme pressures underwater and remain completely scratch proof from everything but diamond.
It features premium gaskets on the crown and caseback which when screwed down, create a hermetic seal, just like the hatch on a submarine, keeping the watch completely dust and waterproof to 200m. We added a 120 click uni-directional bezel with dive scale, and put a lot of attention into making that ‘satisfying click’, removing any play without making it too difficult to turn.
At 40mm diameter and just 11.5mm thin, it’s also quite a subtle watch and can easily be worn with a dress shirt. It’s kind of a men’s medium, or a women’s large.
How did you come up with this design?
The watch is rooted in classic dive watch design, for a timeless look with some unique twists. Belfast is famous for it’s Harland and Wolff shipyard and their massive yellow cranes which dominate the city skyline. I thought the distinct yellow second hand was a nice way to acknowledge that piece of industrial architecture in a tasteful way.
How did you choose the name of the watch, Maraí 401?
Maraí is Irish for Sea Farer, acknowledging the watches diving capabilities. It’s 40mm in diameter and our 1st edition watch, but 401 is also a nod to the famous ship, Titanic which was the 401st ship to be built in H&W’s shipyards. The Shipyard workers used to be known as “Island-men” in reference to the small island where the docks are located, so I nearly called the watch the Island-man in homage to those incredible engineers.
How many different colours/types are available?
We have 2 colours available, the classic Black and Gold or the stunning Deep Ocean Blue. Both are available with a rugged stainless steel strap or an on trend NATO fabric strap which adds an extra splash of colour to a smart casual outfit.
Are you making the watch parts, or have you hired a professional watchmaker?
Although I am an experienced mechanical engineer, it takes more than one person to bring something truly great to life. I have a small team of experts in their respective fields doing some amazing work behind the scenes and a team of seasoned professionals to do the intricate manufacturing work.
We’ve partnered with Horologium.uk, one of the most respected watch makers in the industry, to handle all our aftercare and servicing which allows us to provide an even higher level of service for our clients than many of the big box brands.
How much does a new “Maraí 401” cost?
We have used premium quality materials and techniques at every step of the way, from our Swiss made automatic movement, the water-tight seals and Super-LumiNova markers, but because we deal directly with our clients online, we avoid the ridiculous dealer mark-ups many brands charge.
The Maraí 401starts from just £627, and we have partnered with Klarna to provide interest free payment making our watches one of the most affordable luxury watches on the market.
What do my readers get for their money?
You can read more about the remarkable technical specifications at NomadicWatches.com, but for me, at it’s core, Nomadic is really all about capturing the spirit of adventure. I love to travel, and I truly believe it’s one of the greatest things you can do to expand your mind, meet some amazing people and make progress in your life.
I believe you don’t need lots of fancy stuff, but a few really well-made pieces of equipment can last you a lifetime, through any adventure. A Nomadic watch tells more than the time, it tells your story, a reminder of where you’ve been and to always make progress.
What do I or my readers have to do to get a watch from you as soon as possible?
The first batch is currently in manufacturing and is limited to just 100 pieces, so you’ll need to act fast. They are due to be ready for shipping in November so to get yours, simply head over to NomadicWatches.com and pre-order now. We’ll ship it out to you as soon as it’s ready. We even offer free shipping worldwide, and an easy 30 day returns process if you don’t like it when it arrives… I’m confident you’ll love it as much as I do though!
And what do you want for the future?
The successful launch of the Maraí is the main focus right now, I’m super excited to bring the first batch out to the world and I look forward to seeing what adventures your readers take the watch on!
I want the brand to continue with its adventure theme and create a range of practical and stunning watches for travelling on LAND, SEA and AIR. We are working on designs for a chronograph, an aviator and hopefully a GMT in 2022.
You’ll notice we don’t use any leather or other animal products either, nor excessive unnecessary packaging. I wanted to make sure the brand is as sustainable as possible, and I think this will play an increasingly important role in the brand and across the watch industry in the future.
Thank you for your interview!