Dutch circular design houseboat project

Dutch houseboat dream may come true in Abu Dhabi

Creating floating homes, designed and built in The Netherlands, to introduce a whole new way of living in Abu Dhabi. That is the dream of the Dutch entrepreneur Berend Lens van Rijn, owner of Belevari Marine and a visionary when it comes to new ways of living on the water. Van Rijn: “We’re taking the concept of a houseboat to a whole new level.”

Waterlovt introduces Dutch houseboats in the Middle East

This is what Dutch houseboat experience shipped to Abu Dhabi looks like. (Artist impression by Waterlovt)

The idea started just over a year ago when it struck Van Rijn (40) that he paid huge amounts of money on renting a traditional apartment while he actually makes his money on the water with Belevari Marine. “I realized that we, as Dutchmen, have a huge experience when it comes to water management. Living on the water is one aspect of it. That was the moment when I started thinking about living on the water, and introducing this to Abu Dhabi”, explains Van Rijn in an interview with "Book a houseboat".

Dutch houseboat experience Waterlovt

The Waterlovt houseboats are designed with an amazing panoramix view. (Artist impression by Waterlovt)

Luxury and sustainability combined

In order to get all required information and knowledge together, Van Rijn formed a team called Waterlovt. Van Rijn explains: "With this team of designers, scientists and investors we have designed a houseboat that will change the way of living on the water completely. Our keywords in this project are circular design, off-grid and water efficiency, combined with a level of luxury that connects to the expectations of our market in Abu Dhabi.”

Houseboat operating off grid

Electricity and drinking water is not always easy to connect to on remote places. Therefore the Waterlovt houseboats are designed to operated off grid too. (Artist impression by Waterlovt)

The Waterlovt team consists of the Cleantech Entrepreneur Reinier Mommaal, architect Derk-Jan Wentink with his company Nieuw Nederland Architecten and Berend Lens’ brother Dennis.

The Dutch connection

In order to get the latest innovations in materials, design and equipment, Waterlovt is cooperating with various Dutch innovative companies, all renowned for their expertise and innovations and have contributed to a design that is ready for the future. "There were quite a few challenges and I’m proud to say we have pretty much tackled them all", says Van Rijn.

"Think of the protection of materials from UV-light from the sun and the salinity of the sea water. And we wanted to create a houseboat that could operate completely off-grid. To achieve this we have designed a system of solar power and water recycling that enables our houseboats to operate without being connected to water- or electricity from the main land. Yes, I’m proud to have established this valuable Dutch connection”.

Waterlovt houseboat artists impression

Space, space and more space, that's what you get if you order this amazing floating home. (Artist impression by Waterlovt)

Floating concrete, safe as any other house

The first order of 20 houseboats - two levels, 240 sqm inside and 100 sqm outside – is under negotiation. Although it took some effort to convince buyers in Abu Dhabi that a houseboat is just as safe as a regular house. “I was not surprised about that. In The Netherlands we have over 12.000 houseboats, of which about 2.500 are located in the capital Amsterdam. For us it’s not unusual to live on the water, but here in the Middle East it’s quite something completely different. People have to get used to the idea that concrete can actually float.”

Houseboat safety Waterlovt

The Abu Dhabi market has to get used to the idea that a houseboat is actually just as safe as a regular house. (Artist impression by Waterlovt)

Houseboat building experience

You can have the most fantastic ideas in the world, but in the end it’s also about realizing them. To achieve this we are working with a Dutch construction company with more than 50 years of experience building houseboats.  Van Rijn: “The foundation of a concrete houseboat is basically a barge. If the barge is not good, the rest of the houseboat is basically useless. Especially with our design that offers a 100 sqm outdoor terrace, hoovering above the water, there’s no room for any errors. I can’t wait till the first houseboat will be transported from Heerenveen in the North of the Netherlands to the tropical climate of Abu Dhabi. It will be an honor to be the first person to set foot on a real Dutch concrete based houseboat!”

More information: www.waterlovt.com