… and the result is the new HopYacht.

Paul Tomes insists there is no shame in wanting a decent night’s sleep during a sailing holiday.  Cramped berths and midnight collisions on the way to the toilet might be fun in your teens and 20s; less so when you’re a been there done that sailor or if you are an anxious middle-aged newcomer.

This was just one of the key guiding principles the team at HopYacht specified to brief Du Toit Yacht Design to create the HopYacht 30, with a view to introducing a new sailing experience to the international market.

A stable, easy to sail, 30 foot catamaran that is a marriage between comfort, affordability, functionality and style. A boat for couples or young families who want a taste of adventure without having to cross an ocean to find it.

According to Allied Market Research, the global adventure tourism market is projected to grow to $1,169,095 million by 2028 which will open up a significant market for newcomers to sailing. However, newcomers will need a boat fit-for-purpose.

Tomes, is a former commodore of Hout Bay Yacht Club. and in talking to fellow members plus a much wider group of sailing colleagues, he is convinced a growing number of sailors want a different kind of sailing experience when they are on holiday, especially if they have a partner who doesn’t enjoy traditional heeled-over sailing quite as much. He points out there is a huge difference between a sailing holiday and holiday sailing and the current smaller charter yachts on offer are more often than not traditional yachts with more berths packed in.

“In recent years my wife Mary-Clare and I have chartered as a couple, and most of the time we’ve been steered towards a 34 or 36ft boat where despite being just the two of you, you don’t get a lot more room,”  He quickly adds  “As you grow older your creature comforts become more important to you. Climbing over somebody to get to the loo is just not funny anymore.”

The team at Du Toit Yacht Design, initially thought the request to design a boat around a an island bed was an unusual starting point, however as the team at HopYacht pointed out, if you are going to target the couples market you need to start with the bed!”

“We also wanted to create a boat that was extraordinarily easy to sail. Watching the habits of other charter yachts particularly in Croatia, Greece and Turkey, a large percentage of charters never hoisted the mainsail.

HopYacht has a simplified rig, with a single furling genoa with all controls leading to the helm station, which makes short-handed sailing really easy.

To achieve the right balance of comfortable sleeping accommodation with overall living space, and full standing headroom throughout, the team decided on a 30ft slimline catamaran.

The HopYacht design has the huge additional benefit of fitting into the same marina berth as a typical 36’-38’ monohull.  Tomes comments, that around 3pm in the afternoon in the Mediterranean, you start to hear motors starting up and boats all racing to grab the remaining berths in a marina.  With space at a premium, wider beam catamarans often have to anchor off and come ashore in their tender, missing out on the buzz and convenience of the marina.

The HopYacht is equipped with twin electric motors, which apart from being much more environmentally friendly, this also means you won’t wake your neighbours with the noise and fumes of a diesel motor starting up, if you plan an early start from the marina.

The entire HopYacht floor plan is all on one level, so no more clambering up and down companionway steps!  The hulls are also demountable with a view to making it easily transportable:  “You can ship it anywhere in the world in two standard 40ft containers,” explains Tomes

As he finished his Bootleggers espresso, he commented “It has always been a dream of mine to get involved in the industry, however not to simply try and build more of the same slightly better, but to build a boat that makes a meaningful difference in people’s lives … relaxed holiday sailing for everyone.”

One small Hop for HopYacht, one giant leap for the local industry?

Sign In


Reset Password

Please enter your username or email address, you will receive a link to create a new password via email.