ROTTERDAM – Need confirmation of the strong demand for fast Dutch-made motor yachts? Check out Salut Boats, which began operations in 2019. Today, three fast tenders have been sold, and a 47ft (14.3m) version is in development.
In 2008, Marco Jongeling – an ICT specialist and avid sailor unable to find a motor yacht he liked – ordered an aluminum hull that he finished himself. The result is a fast, no-frills tender with a full bath, fixed berths up front, and large outboards. “People hated it or loved it,” he says today. “Nothing in-between!”
In 2017, he sold that boat and founded Salut Boats with entrepreneur Eef Middendorp. In 2019, the inaugural 8.8m cabin tender Salut-29 was launched, featuring sharp, fast lines, a roomy cockpit, a plumb bow, accommodations upfront, and powerful outboards.
Recent years have seen the emergence of several fast, luxury motor yacht brands in the Netherlands that target the superyacht market.
“We looked at what potential customers want. And what segment we can serve,” says Dennis Jongeling – the son of – who has joined his father’s business. “Our ‘signature’ is … freedom, fun and enjoyment with no bells and whistles. We position ourselves just below the very high-end market. We offer luxury but at a reasonable price.”
A Salut-29 with a 200HP outboard is available from €150,000. Salut Boats prides itself in marketing luxury boats that aren’t elitist.
Jongeling defends outboards as “a high-quality, efficient Formula 1 technology, a low-maintenance option.” Also, he says, they look stylish.” Saluts are also available with electric drives or inboards on pods or stern drives.
Jongeling has no boatyard. He relies on existing Dutch yards to build the hulls and do the paintwork and finishing. The company has an office in a Rotterdam skyscraper. It also has a demo model in Rotterdam.
The Salut model line expands fast. Recently, a 29ft center control was added with an open bow and lounge seats. Two 29 CC models will soon be based in Ibiza, where Salut Boats will quickly have a dealer. Last year, an 11.6m Salut-38 was built, and a 47-ft client-requested model.
“Our growth curve is steep,” says Jongeling. “And we want to expand abroad.” One problem area is the scarcity of workers, the inflated costs of raw materials, and iffy delivery schedules. “These days, engines must be ordered more than a year in advance if you want to get them in on time,” says Jongeling.