In anticipation of receiving his brand-new Fountaine-Pajot MY6 catamaran, Benny Ip talks to Gafencu about sharing his passion for sailing with his father, his most memorable boating moments and more…
Tell us how you discovered your love of sailing.
Honestly, I’ve always been someone who enjoys being out in the wild. I love being in nature, be it hiking up some hills or being on the ocean. Having said that, it was actually my father who first introduced me to boating when I was a child. At first, our family had a small power boat that we used to take out on weekends, but as I got older, roughly the time I started high school, we began to transition to sailing yachts instead, and that’s when I fell in love with the tranquility of being on the ocean. Even twelve years later, I very much enjoy the calm and quiet of sailing, where it’s just you and the environment. You can kind of forget about everything else for those moments.
Also, it’s a fantastic way to bond with my dad as well. Coming from an Asian family, I think a lot of things go unspoken, particularly when it comes to discussing emotions and such. But when you’re working sails and operating a boat together, there’s a sense of comfortability and camaraderie that connects us without words.
Looking back, what’s your fondest memory of sailing?
I think the most memorable experience for me happened about four or five years ago when my dad and I participated in a sailing boat race to Macau. It just so happened that the event was held right after a typhoon, so the ocean conditions were super rough. Pretty much everything went wrong – we lost one of our sails halfway through the trip, then one of our engines stopped working as well. I think we spent about six hours trying to fix everything; roughly the same time that it should have taken us to do the entire race. My gosh it was a challenging time, but I look back on it very fondly. It showed me how truly powerful nature is, and how small you are, but at the same time it was very character-building!
Fast forward to the present, and you are about to receive your brand new Fountaine-Pajot MY6. What attracted you to this design?
We looked at quite a lot of different power catamarans from various brands, but when my friend Justin Luk, who works as a broker for Asia Yachting, introduced the MY6 by Fountaine-Pajot to us, that’s the one we ended up choosing for several reasons. Firstly, there’s just the sheer size of it – there isn’t any other catamaran that has this feeling of spaciousness to it. From the height of the ceilings to the roomy cabins and airy lounge areas, it just feels much larger than a 40ft boat. I also liked that there was no wasted space such as superfluous corridors and connecting areas, resulting in a sleek, clean aesthetic. The attention to detail of the MY6 was also a deciding factor, whether it’s the uniformity and high-quality finish of the fibreglass exterior to the beautiful upholstery and furnishings within. From the macro to the micro, it’s truly an impressive design.
How do you feel this latest addition will complement your lifestyle?
It’s going to be a nice change. As my father reaches retirement age and I’ve become more settled in my own career, we’re both transitioning to a new phase of life, and the MY6 gives us the chance to shift from sailing yachts to a more laid-back, convivial ocean-going atmosphere. It gives us the chance to step off the gas, forget about issues such as Covid, and just enjoy each other’s company. It’s also a great venue to socialise with friends and family, whether it’s hosting big barbecues or just having an afternoon sail with a few loved ones. Basically, whatever activity we choose, we’ll be able to enjoy it with the luxurious feeling of being in a private apartment on the water.
For more information on the MY6 or any other Fountaine-Pajot vessels, please contact Asia Yachting, the exclusive dealer for the brand, at firstname.lastname@example.org or +852 2580 8650.