The How-To Guide to Christening a Boat

So you are the proud new owner of a yacht. You have the name picked out and she is officially in your possession. So what now?

A champagne party with family and friends to celebrate— of course! In a traditional (or not so traditional) christening ceremony.

At Leopard Catamarans, every now and again we receive the honor of christening boats with our owners at boat shows. See image right, this photo was snapped during the boat christening of "Runner Duck", a beautiful new Leopard 51PC, at Yachts Miami Beach. Watch the Facebook Live video of Runner Duck's christening here! 

Alternatively, it may be best to christen your new possession from the comfort of your own slip, as the purpose of a christening is the send the boat off on her maiden voyage. Albeit, the length of the voyage is irrelevant, so technically speaking you could cruise (or sail) her around the marina and be back in time for dinner. But please, do not let us discourage you from feeling so inspired by this ceremony of good luck and safe travels that you start your Atlantic Crossing as soon as the champagne is gone. Actually, we take that back, we prohibit you from crossing the Atlantic, or going anywhere on your boat for that matter, under the influence of champagne.

Please note that the ceremony will only be about 5-10 minutes in length, so please enjoy it!

What you will need:

  1. A Boat
  2. A boat name
  3. Friends
  4. Champagne
  5. Champagne Flutes


Now follow these steps carefully, or don’t follow them at all, just have fun!


As the proud owner of your new yacht, you will need to give a speech. And by speech we simply recommend that you welcome friends, thank them for joining, and provide an explanation on the name of your boat. Please feel free to recite a poem at this time, should you feel so inspired.


Ensure that that all guests have been equipped with a proper sipping mechanism. A champagne flute is of course preferred, but a red solo cup will do just fine! Once everyone has a full glass, raise yours and toast in the name of your boat.


If you are not on the bow of the boat, please head towards the bow at this time. Now comes the fun part! Take an unopened bottle of champagne and shake it up to get the bottle ready for popping!


The traditional way of christening a boat is to break the champagne bottle somewhere on the bow. This could either be on a cleat or the anchor roller. Because catamarans have two hulls and because we love an unchipped gel coat before a maiden voyage, we will shake the bottle up, pop it open and pour some over the bow of the port or starboard hull, or both!


Congratulation! Your christening ceremony is over and your boat is ready to see the world. Where you go from here is completely up to you— that is the beauty of owning your own boat.   


Topics: Boat Buying Process, Leopard 51 PC

Katie Baker

Katie is a Yacht Sales Marketing Professional specializing in the growth of the marine industry. Her creativity is most brilliant when sailing and multihulls are the theme.


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