Vaan R4

HELLEVOETSLUIS – Vaan Yachts BV has won an A’Design Award for its highly sustainable 12.8m (42ft.) Vaan R4.

More than half of the catamaran’s hull is made from recycled aluminum – old window frames, traffic signs and car tags, for instance. Other boat parts contain more than 75% ‘circular’ materials such as cork, linen, pineapple leaves and other plant-based alternatives to leather

“We are proud of the recognition the Vaan R4 has received for its sustainability,” says Igor Kluin. He designed and developed the R4 with his partner, interior designer Nienke van ‘t Klooster. “To now receive a global design award is, of course, also quite an honor.”

Igor Kluin

The jury of the Italy-based A’Design Award & Competition lauded the Vaan R4 for combining “exciting sailing” with luxury comfort, space and sustainability.

The backdrop to the yacht’s development is an indictment of the climate change age. Annually, 80,000 polyester boats in Europe alone reach their end-of-life. Only 2,000 are properly dismantled. The rest is incinerated, causing massive CO2 emissions.

Kluin gets recycled aluminum for his yacht from Norway’s giant Norsk Hydro ASA.

He has found an investor and is optimistic he can soon conclude negotiations with a first buyer. That’s important, he adds, to get “many people who have expressed an interest in a Vaan R4” to sign on the dotted line, too. “Interested parties have contacted us from everywhere. Chicago, Canada, Oslo etc.,” he tells this newsletter.

Kluin adds the Vaan R4 “is about 10% to 20% more expensive” than the Beneteau Lagoon, the current world leader in 11 to 24m cruising catamarans.

Vaan R4 Catamaran

But the Vaan R4 is very different. It is sailed like a monohull – i.e. from twin transom helm positions as opposed to a flybridge. It has an open transom for more contact with the water which triggers more sailing excitement and better performance. “We are a premier brand,” says Kluin.