De 4 Vaargetijden - Your crew:

Your crew:

Olga, Noty & Maurits
Maurits: your captain, your host, your engineer, your waiter,your dishwashing help, your laundryman,…

Good day, my name is Maurits,

My crib stood in Geleen and so I am a Dutchman. Or rather a Limburger in heart and soul. My father had a laundry. As a teenager I worked there for a while too. It was perhaps predestined, because now I’m the laundry boss on board.

As self-employed, my parents certainly loved free time too. They crossed the Netherlands aboard their motorboat. And my brothers, my sister and I were welcome along! Soon the mother ship had a whole fleet in tow. Sailing or motorised, all Dutch inland waterways were covered. The watermicrobe was stuck in my blood.

My uncle was an engineer on seagoing ships. I certainly have an affinity with technology and engines, but navigation attracted me more. That’s how I ended up at the nautical college in Rotterdam.

One day a Belgian woman came to live at the boarding school of the nautical college. As outsiders in the heart of the Netherlands, it clicked between Limburg and Belgium, although I had to glue her with a plaster… I will gladly tell you the rest of the story on board!

Did you know:

  • I’ve quit after years of heavy smoking?
  • I’m more and more interested in birds and now I’m figuring out how to photograph them?
  • I’m an early bird who makes coffee and tea ready in the morning
  • You won’t see it, but I do all the small jobs in the spare time
  • while sailing you can ask me questions. I’m happy to give you the right answer and if I don’t know, I’ll make something up!
  • As a tough sailor I’d rather have coffee than a pint…
Olga: your chef, your hostess, your sailor, your tourist board, your food supplier,…

Hello, I’m Olga,

I was born in Brasschaat, a town near Antwerp where I could hear the ships honking in the harbour when the wind was right. That was the 1e link with water and shipping…

First our family with 4 children went camping during the vacations. But my father made his dream come true when I was 8 years old and bought a sailboat. That’s when the water virus really hit…

At my 18e I chose to study to become a mate on large commercial vessels, in order to be able to bring big seagoing vessels and their cargo safely across the 7 seas. In the nautical college of Rotterdam I got my license and discovered Maurits…

Did you know:

  • My mother allowed me to cook as a child and I had the rest of the family as grateful guinea pigs.
  • I especially love desserts and vegetables.
  • As a child, my father taught me a lot about photography and the darkroom
  • If your father is a biology teacher, you automatically get an eye for nature and its inhabitants
  • Besides my cradle, a large saint bernard dog played… so I’m a dog person!
  • You don’t do me any favours with coffee, but rather with a brown Belgian beer ( after working hours)
Noty, your ship’s dog, your guardian, your eye-catcher,…

Woof I’m Noty!

Woof I’m Noty!
I’m the 3rd Sailing Dog of The 4 Vaargetijden.
Crazy name, huh? Not nearly as bad as my predecessors… First there was Boef (bandit) and then Dief (thief). Yeah, I know, my name sounds almost like Naughty… and I am a little bit too. I’ll tell you with a growl where I am and where you’re supposed to be. Still, my name is nautical, too. I’m a real hound with a yacht up to 30 yards!

Just joking, huh? I’m a bearded collie and actually a real shepherd. There aren’t that many sheep on board. So I drive the guests together. And you know, sometimes I succeed… Cool!
I also make sure Boss Olga finds her way to the baker’s every morning. The guests love fresh bread and cakes every day.

I look pretty cute, don’t you think?
If you’re really nice, you can pet me sometimes. I’ll tell you when I like it.

Did you know that:

  • I’m really pretty, but I don’t like cuddling…
  • I do like to pose for a photo
  • I’ve already learned a lot: obedience, agility and herding sheep
  • I now like to mantrail in my spare time: I follow the trail of lost people
Crew in het stuurhuis
your crew in the wheelhouse

Sailing is in our blood…

After the nautical school Maurits and Olga boarded different shipping companies. Olga joined forces with the Belgian shipping company Ahlers. From apprentice to captain she sailed on various ships literally all over the world.
Maurits opted for a Dutch shipping company and sailed directly as a mate in coastal shipping. His standard term was 4 months on board. Fortunately, he was allowed to stay a little longer on board until Olga knew when she would be relieved after about 6 months. So they were home together during their vacation!

There is a time of coming and going and life has its own twists and turns.
In order to spend more time together, we chose to convert an “inland boat” from a cargo ship to a comfortable leisure ship. The feeling of water sports is hard to describe, you just have to feel it. The peace, the space, the feeling of being in another world, watching everything from the water,… We knew it from an early age. We wanted to share this feeling, this experience and this love for the water world with those who don’t have a ship. It started as a crazy idea and took shape as we brainstormed. In 1998 we started looking for a suitable ship: not too big, because all small waters are the most wonderful.

Begin 1
1998: And so was the start…
And this is the resulting De 4 Vaargetijden…

This is how the cruise ship was found!

After searching everywhere, we found the suitable ship in Wessem, actually nearby home.
The luxemotor of 30m long and 5m wide was built in 1924 as a freighter. When we found it, the ship had been lying unemployed in the harbour for several years. The skipper had retired and the ship, no longer profitable as a freighter, was looking for a new destination.
It had been a long year of hard work. You can read the whole story in the blogs.
In July 1999 the metamorphosis was completed. The first guests were allowed to come and taste the atmosphere on the Belgian inland waterways. With its 30m the ship is quite big. Yet we deliberately chose only 4 cabins. So there are never more than 8 guests on board. This means that there is plenty of time & space for every guest to fill in their vacation to suit their wishes.
But first we had a big party and our new hotel ship was dipped in De 4 Vaargetijden!
Unbelievable, meanwhile we even had our 20th anniversary with De 4 Vaargetijden behind us…

Would you like to get on board? Then don’t postpone it for years…