For many people, building a boat out of a functioning hot tub would be achievement enough. But the creators of Vancouver’s “hot tub boat” have bigger dreams—to cross the Georgia Strait in it.
Edward Estabrook, Marco Bieri, Artem Bylinskii, and Piotr Forysinski started building the boat in 2013 out of a discarded hot tub. The hot tub boat has a fibreglass-reinforced hull, pontoons, a motor, and a propane heater to warm the water—as well as LED lighting and a disco ball for night visibility, of course.
According to the hot tub boat’s Kickstarter, Estabrook first had the idea a few years ago. “While contemplating life aboard a houseboat in Shuswap Lake, B.C., I realized that spending the day on the water can only be trumped by spending the day on the water in the water,” he writes. But it was only when his friend Piotr Forysinski obtained a couple of pontoons that Estabrook’s outrageous idea started to become a reality. The men then used Kickstarter to raise more than $3,000 to fund the project.
The hot tub boat premiered at Vancouver’s Celebration of Lights in 2013, where police weren’t exactly thrilled about the idea. Even so, the boat’s creators had ample documentation to prove their boat’s validity. “The next year we had a binder with all the regulations highlighted,” Marco Bieri told the CBC. “This year, they just waved us through because they remembered us.”
Now that the hot tub boat is a reliable and certified sea vessel, its creators have their sights set on the Georgia Strait. They plan to set a distance record by crossing the Strait this year. “We just want to go on more ambitious voyages,” Bylinskii said.
So far, poor weather conditions have forced the boaters to reschedule their record-breaking trip, but they have sailed as far as Gambier Island—still quite an achievement for a floating hot tub.