Ending a series of travels we find our way to the Côte d’Azur in France to meet up with Anonimo watches for a sailing adventure. In a hotel nearby the harbor we gather up and change into the SFS sailing outfit for the best possible team spirit. Following a short walk we are looking at the SFS yacht which is one of the largest sailing boats there. As soon as we get on board and have a closer look, we realize this thing is made for one thing only and doing that in the fastest way possible. Sailing! It looks like almost everything is made out of carbon.
With a small team we get some instructions and before we know it, we are out on open water and the engine is turned off. This is where the hard work begins! On deck there are three ‘grinding stations’ which are manned by two persons. On the floor there are several buttons that connect them to winches. Being part of the grinder team I take my place behind the grinder. Right hand inside, left hand outside. We soon realize how hard this is and the amount of power it takes getting the sail up. Even with the grinder having two gears to ease the workload it takes hard work to get things done.
Having sailing experience from my youth on a recreational yacht and more recent from the RC44 cup, this is something completely different. Built to race, this boat is equipped with a mechanical keel which allows it to swivel at the bottom of the hull. At the captains control the weight can move left or right to give the boat the best position on the water. Combined with two wing shaped blades which are located more forward they can select the perfect setup for stability and speed. Demonstrating this at the push of a button the boats sails at a 40 degree angle in seconds. While having a big smile on his face the captain says ‘hold on’! Luckily I am in the perfect spot where I can lean against the ship itself. Not much later we are back in a more comfortable position sailing on the Mediterranean Sea.
While sailing we get to see the latest Anonimo Nautilo Nato watches.
Turning around after some time we find ourself ‘before the wind’ with dropping wind speeds. So it’s time to take out the big sails. From below deck comes a massive package that is quickly being rolled out. Grinders ready? Go, go, go! In no time the massive sail is hoisted up which measures about 440m2. As wind speeds are dropping even this doesn’t help much to get us back to the shore so it is time to switch back to horse power. As fast as the sail went up it came down in the gangway of the boat.
Sailing between two little islands we find ourselves with many other boats that are anchored there. On the island there is a restaurant that offers a water taxi through the trustworthy VHF radio. Just use the radio to request transport and a rib boat will pick you up. As the taxi boat is much smaller than our yacht the captain uses the movable keel to put the boat at an angle which makes it easy to hop off. During the following lunch we get a presentation of the latest models and a preview of what is soon to come.
At the end of the day we arrive again in the harbor where we left earlier that day. We thank the captain and his crew for the great experience. Time to head back to the hotel to freshen up and explore a bit of Cannes before dinner. After a short night we head back home from another great experience for which we want to thank Anonimo and all others who made this a trip never to forget.
Bert Buijsrogge has worked in the real-estate business for 15 years and combined his passion for watches and photography over the years. He became famous for his watch photography and created a specific branded watch calendar for a number of... read more