'Hot tub' tugboat idea is floated on Canary Wharf's West India Dock Quay
PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 June 2018
A ‘tub’ boat filled with fresh, hot water to dip into has been floating around on a trial run in the Millwall Docks ready to start operating daily “bathing cruises” in August.
The buoyant tub has already been trialed on the Regent’s Canal off City Road.
Now the company running it is setting up a permanent base with a small fleet of three tub-boats to run 90-minute tours in the West India Dock, in the shadow of the Canary Wharf cityscape.
Stunned office workers saw one of the tubs floating with champagne-swigging bathers enjoying a trial dip this week.
“Hot tubs on the canal have been bubbling over for a year and raising the occasional eyebrow on the towpath,” the Canal and River Trust charity’s Richard Beardsley said.
“Now we’re letting the operators bring them to West India Quay to help office workers to unwind.”
The company, HotTugUK, is hiring out the tubs for £225 for the 90-minute bathing cruise for groups up to seven at a time from August 1, Wednesdays to Sundays.
The little vessel is the world’s first ‘hot tub’ boat, an electric self-drive, wood-fired vessel that has fresh water heated to 38 degrees on every trip, floating silently and slowly.
It was first launched on the Regent’s Canal last summer and has proved so popular that the company has decided to “float” the idea at the docks.
HotTugUK’s founder Tommo Stuart Thomson said: “We are making West India Quay our permanent home.
“It has been an amazing first year with our weekends booked out months in advance as a major attraction.”
The ‘tub’ boats are self-drive—but you don’t need a pilot’s license.
It goes so slowly that “there’s no chance of crashing” or going down with all hands.
The hot water in the tub also acts as extra buoyancy to keep the vessel afloat.
The ‘tub’ trips are running all year round—yes, even in winter.