Bayonne: the Phoenix stops in the Basque Country | Euskal Herria

Bayonne: the Phoenix stops in the Basque Country | Euskal Herria
Bayonne: the Phoenix stops in the Basque Country | Euskal Herria

MAY 2024. 02 – 4:30 p.m.

The sailboat Phoenix, recently bought by two Bretons, will be stationed in Bayonne until May 9, before heading to Pasaia for the Sea Festival.

The Phoenix makes a stop in the Basque Country from May 1st to 12th. (Les Voiles Océane)

Jewel of the seas since its construction in 1929, the Phoenix stops in the Basque Country. Passing through our territory for Pasaia Itsas Festibala from May 9 to 12, the boat makes a stop upstream at Edmond-Foy quay in Bayonne from May 1 to 9. The curious will be able to visit this pretty brig from May 2. And to conclude its Bayonne stage, the crew, made up of four professional sailors and two volunteers, will offer around thirty people the chance to sail aboard the sailboat to Pasaia.

A true copy of an 18th century Danish boat, it was under the English flag for 50 years, between 1974 and 2024 before being bought at the beginning of March by two Breton enthusiasts, Yannick Derdellou and Yannick Harz. The new owners make it available to the Les Voiles Océane association for visits, business seminars and private events. “The idea is to make accessible what is not. These boats are a dream, but we don’t have access to them. It’s a relic, it’s a true testament to a bygone era. I hope that the boat will please everyone, because it is truly exceptional,” explains Yannick Harz, who is also president of the association.

movie star

This 34 meter two-masted ship with a 370 m² sail area has had several lives, which the new owners will be happy to tell visitors about during the Basque stopover. A ship carrying goods until the early 1960s, it was then used as a film set when the British bought it and restored it. He played the role of Santa Maria in Ridley Scott’s film 1492: Christopher Columbus, as well as in his Napoleon and in the series Outlander, Poldark, Doctor Who.

Wrested from the English after intense negotiations, the sailboat is now moored at the port of Quiberon (Morbihan), to the great dismay of the boat’s former captain, reports Yannick Harz. “This was done with pain and sweat, because it must be blocked in the 18th century. He refused to see the boat in French hands and did everything to sabotage the sale by kidnapping the keys and papers on the last day. The police had to be sent, assures the co-owner, who says he had fun. We pushed the vice by Frenchifying the boat. We bought a 16 m² pavilion which we proudly raised so we could send him the photo.”

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