XYOA X-Yachts Factory Visit 2023

Published by xyoaadmin on

On the afternoon Tuesday 21 March 2023, 41 X-Yacht owners and their wives/partners checked-in at London Heathrow to fly to Billund, Denmark.  Despite the 2 hour delay in taking-off, it was an enthusiastic and happy bunch of travellers who were each met individually at Billund Airport by Torben and Lotte of X-Yachts Denmark.

A luxury coach was waiting outside the airport, and we were soon in the comfortable Harmonien Hotel in Haderslev where we were joined by a few other owners who had travelled by other means. 

Whilst most owners were from the UK, it was joy to meet three who had traveled from Canada and two from Switzerland.  Despite the lateness of the evening, X-Yachts had organised for the hotel to provide very tasty food and ample drinks.

After a hearty breakfast on Wednesday and a damp walk to the X-Yachts factory, we were entertained by some superb presentations in the showroom:

Kraen Brink Nielson, CEO, gave a warm welcoming speech and a brief history of X-Yachts.

Torben Kornum, Global Market Development Manager, welcomed everyone and outlined the nature of the presentations to follow.

Birger Hansen, one of the founders, talked about the very first X-Yacht, X-79 and more fascinating, his love of building outrageous and powerful motor bikes.

Thomas Mielec, Director of Design & Engineering, spoke about the philosophy and process of  X-Yachts design and the design of the latest X-Yacht, Xc47.

Lotte Bodilsen, gave an interesting talk on Danish design and its incorporation into X-Yachts’ design philosophy

After an enjoyable smorgasbord lunch, owners were taken on a tour of the factory and saw in particular, an X5.6’s nearly complete hull and in a separate building, its deck.  These were shortly to be bonded together.  All were impressed with the quality of workmanship on the X-Yachts and the clean and orderly layout of the factory.

That evening a spectacular dinner in the candle and fairy-lit decorated showroom was enjoyed by all.  Kraen and Torben welcomed the guests, and later Max Hubbard thanked X-yachts for their interesting and generous visit to X-Yachts headquarters. Only too evident was the “family” atmosphere of owners of different nationalities enjoying the company and camaraderie of the designers and builders of their favourite yachts.  Sadly it was a wet walk back to the Harmonien Hotel.

On Thursday, 23 March, owners visited the factory again to see the mock-up of the new Xc47 and other completed yachts in the showroom and the factory.  Many took the opportunity to visit a recently completed X5.6 in the marina and were suitably impressed even if their bank balance was not even sufficient to pay the deposit.  Later Dan Pedersen, multiple world sailing champion, and Torsten Bastiansen, Export Sales & Project Coordinator, gave a brilliant presentation on rigging. 

Meanwhile many of the wives/partners had visited the Danish furniture house, Ingvard Christensen in Vejle to better appreciate Danish design, but luckily none took the opportunity to purchase any of the wonderful items for sale.  Also visited were two outstanding houses/apartments of Danish design.

In the afternoon, owners and wives were eventually united at the factory whilst enjoying tea/coffee and delicious cake before retuning by coach to Billund airport.

It would be boring to explain how the party then spent a further two days waiting at the airport or in adjacent hotels for an airworthy aircraft to take them home.  However that did not distract from a most enjoyable and interesting visit to the home of our wonderful X-Yachts.

Max Hubbard

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