Breaking rules, setting trends

Hanse history

Breaking Rules, Setting Trends: Since 1990

From a humble cutter's yard, Hanse revolutionised sailing through innovative design and engineering, making it simpler, faster and more comfortable than ever before. Driven by a relentless focus on customer needs and modern maritime demands, our philosophy has made Hanse one of the world's leading manufacturers of ocean-going sailing yachts. Looking to the future, we are committed to continuing to elevate your time on the water, ensuring that sailing our yachts remains one of the most rewarding leisure experiences you will ever enjoy.

The Genesis of HanseYachts: 1990 

Founder Michael Schmidt took over the former East German boat and repair yard, setting the stage for what would become a modern boatyard in Greifswald. But he wasn't starting from scratch. Instead, the then-called Yachtzentrum Greifswald GmbH was built on a legacy of skilled craftsmanship that had long thrived in the city.  


Initially, the yard specialised in servicing and repairing sailboats and motorboats, particularly for Scandinavian clients. But even in those early days, the framework was being laid for what would become HanseYachts. The rich tradition and deep pool of skilled labour from the old yard served as cornerstones for the modern vision Schmidt had dreamed of. 

1993 The Inception of Innovation: Unveiling the First Hanse Yacht 

In 1993, the world's maritime stage witnessed a new wave of ingenuity as the company unveiled the first Hanse series-manufactured vessel, the Hanse 291, at the International Hamburg Boat Show. This trailblazing yacht marked Hanse's foundation: breaking rules, setting trends.  


The Hanse 291 was inspired by the Aphrodite 29 and crafted by renowned Scandinavian designer Carl Baier. With its oiled teak fittings and exceptional sailing characteristics, it symbolised comfortable elegance, showcasing groundbreaking features like the first-ever series-manufactured self-tacking jib. Price-wise, it was unbeatable at 44,444 German Marks, soaring to become an absolute bestseller across Germany, Europe, North America, Australia, and Southeast Asia. In every line and curve, it embodied Hanse's DNA - innovative, elegant, and effortlessly superior. 


A mere year following the world premiere of the first Hanse yacht, the Hanse 331 made its debut at the 1994 Hamburg Boat Show. The brand further elevated its profile with the Hanse 401 in 1997, introducing modern design elements. In 1998, the Hanse 292 won the European Yacht of the Year award, setting the stage for more successes. The turn of a new era came in 1999, as Hanse partnered with judel/vrolijk & co to design the award-winning Hanse 371, a model that encapsulated the brand's ongoing commitment to quality and innovation. 


At the turn of the century, HanseYachts continued collecting accolades with the Hanse 311 and 331, both honoured as European Yacht of the Year. The Hanse 411 and 341 soon followed, embodying the hallmark design of judel/vrolijk & co. During 2002-03, investment in advanced technologies revamped the Hanse 300 and 311 interiors, epitomising luxury with high-gloss finishes. In 2003-04, Hanse dominated the Yacht of the Year Awards and unveiled the Hanse 531, its largest project that set a new standard with its loft-inspired interior by Birgit Schnaase. 

2004 - 2010

In the early years of this period, HanseYachts continued to set the pace in yacht innovation with the Easy Sailing Concept and a refreshed lineup featuring the Hanse 342 and 461. Interior upgrades and the introduction of family-friendly features like one-rope reefing systems provided more comfort and convenience both above and below the deck. By 2005, Hanse's logo gained a signature wave, and the brand broadened its range to include six diverse models like the Hanse 315, 370, and 400, one of which earned the accolade for Europe's Most Innovative Yacht. 


Personalisation took centre stage as Hanse introduced the Individual Cabin Concept, allowing for extensive customisations in series-manufactured yachts. In particular, the Hanse 400 was offered in 80 different interior variants. Additionally, models like the latter and the Hanse 370 led in performance breakthroughs such as the steep stem design.  


In 2006, the shipyard was officially named HanseYachts. It also marked the launch of the Hanse 430, a model that captured attention for its speed-centric structure. The following years brought the curtain-raiser of the Hanse 630e, featuring the world's first intelligent hinged armature system. The brand's portfolio grew to eight cutting-edge models by the decade's end, notably contributing to its impact in competitive sailing with several regatta victories. 


Interior and exterior redesigns breathed new life into existing models like the Hanse 320, 350, and 400. By 2010, the debut of the Hanse 375 and 545 at various boat shows set new benchmarks for spacious layouts and groundbreaking designs.  

2010 - 2014

This half-decade represented a period of sustained innovation and rejuvenation, with the 2010-11 season ushering in fresh successors like the Hanse 325 and 355. In a pivotal moment the following year, HanseYachts launched its Smart Lighting Concept - an initiative that seamlessly integrated diverse light sources (from indirect lighting in the saloon's ceiling to highlights atop cupboards, in the bow, and even on the floor) across various models, including the Hanse 385 and 415, to create a harmonious onboard atmosphere. The same span also introduced the Smart Mooring System, enhancing docking ease for the Hanse 445 and 495 and setting new industry standards. 


In 2012-13, HanseYachts raised the bar on simplicity with the Hanse 345's rope-free cockpit, all while debuting the Hanse 575 in Amsterdam, a model praised for its space efficiency. The Hanse 415, launched a year earlier, earned the European Yacht of the Year title in the Family Cruiser category. 


By 2013-14, the brand continued its trend of global premieres. The Hanse 505 redefined what comfort, performance, and customisation options could look like. Meanwhile, in December 2013, the 100th Hanse 575 found its home in Australia, marking a significant milestone for this standout sailboat model. 

2014 - 2018

During these years, HanseYachts continually pushed the envelope of yacht design and customisation across a dynamic lineup. The Hanse 455 emerged as a beacon of luxury, boasting the largest cockpit in its class and various keel options. Versatility continued with the Hanse 315, which offered tailored steering choices and led the charge into e-mobility with an award-winning rudder drive. High-end features such as the carbon-reinforced T-top in the Hanse 675 and the Silent Master Cabin in the Hanse 588 enhanced onboard experiences. A quartet of new models - Hanse 348, 388, 418, and 548 - made their grand entrance in Cannes, featuring inviting interiors accented by trendy colours and elegant woods. Complementing their allure were more spacious cockpits, sleeker lines, and enhanced sailing areas for quicker, easier, and safer voyages. 

2018 - Present

Embracing a fresh chapter, Hanse transitioned from the esteemed judel/vrolijk & co to the visionary French designers Berret-Racoupeau. This shift heralded the award-winning Hanse 460's debut - a yacht that seamlessly melds time-honoured traditions with avant-garde aesthetics, offering skippers thrilling experiences while providing families with a contemporary maritime haven. With this rejuvenated vision, the fleet including the new Hanse 510 and 410 has been reimagined, guaranteeing Hanse Yachts remains at the forefront of innovation, agility, and comfort.  

Hanse 371 Exterior Image

Model history

Since 1990, HanseYachts has been at the forefront of yachting craftsmanship, seamlessly combining cutting-edge design, fast cruising and effortless, easy sailing. Our model history offers a complete overview of each yacht's lineage, showcasing Hanse's commitment to innovation and quality over the years.

Legacy models