|Hot Tub Boat Making Waves|
|By ELIZA MURPHY (@ElizaWMurphy)||Oct 3, 2012, 5:44 PM|
Meet the Hot Tug, probably the coolest (or actually, hottest) invention around.
Frank de Bruijn, 41, of Rotterdam, Netherlands, has created the Hot Tug, a hot tub boat, which comfortably seats six to eight people.
Hot Tug's sales manager, Jochem Karstanje, 33, of Amsterdam, told ABC News de Bruijn was born to make this boat.
"He's a born shipperman, so he was always on a boat. Making a boat was always on his mind actually," Karstanje said. "His dream was to combine his passion for boats and something for public spaces, and he loved to go in a hot tub. So for him, this was obvious. He loved to do it, and one way or another he made this boat."
Heated by a wood-burning stove, the Hot Tug holds a 2,000 liters of water and usually takes about three hours to fill. However, if you prefer staying dry while floating merrily down the stream, you can still use the boat without adding any water.
"You can just use it as a normal ship, just a little boat to relax in. You can even go in with more people without water," Karstanje said.
The water maintains a comfortable 38 degrees Celsius, or 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, regardless of the outside water's temperature where the boat is floating, and the boat itself is sturdy.
"I can tell you, it's unbelievably stable. You can stand on the side, and then jump in the water, but with 2,000 liters of water in it, it's quite heavy and stable. After being in the cold water, you get back into the 38 degrees heat, your whole body starts to shiver," Karstanje said.
The boat stays heated quite easily.
"You just place some logs in there, you heat it up, and then the water starts to heat. It's as simple as that," explained Karstanje.
Two versions of the Hot Tug are available. You can choose the one with the integrated electric motor, or the outboard engine option. But before getting too excited, brace your wallets for the bill. The fanciest version that includes the boat, stainless steel wood burning heater, electric engine, batteries and a charger will set you back $21,000. Or if you prefer to pinch pennies, you can go with the more modest model which costs $14,000.
"I loved the idea and it's so unique and everybody's fond of it," Karstanje said. "You're even fond of it before you try it, but trying it is really awesome. People watching you are like, 'What is happening? I can't believe my eyes.'"
The Hot Tug started selling in September, and Karstanje said the attention the boat has already gotten "is unbelievable. It's booming for one reason or another."
The boat's standard color is black, but it's also available in green, blue and especially orange, "because it's the Dutch color," Karstanje joked.