Alec Newton, Lead Skipper on Croatia South, takes us through a unique day in the Croatian calendar. Commonly referred to as ‘Wednesday’ throughout the rest of the world; this special day is known as ‘Hvarday’ for guests on The Yacht Week!
Hvarday is legendary among both TYW veterans and newcomers. As a skipper one of the most frequent questions asked at the beginning of the week is “When are we going to hit Hvar?”. For those who don’t know, Hvar is known as the jewel in the Adriatic’s crown, and is likened to both Saint Tropez and Cannes in the Côte d’Azur of France. It is the ultimate party destination in Croatia.
To clarify what Hvarday involves and before we can delve into its more exciting details it is necessary to provide a schedule of this most action packed day – or to quote Max (Crew Boat Manager / Resident MC / Irish) “Are you ready for the best day of your lives?!”
- 0900 – Wake up followed by ham and eggs, double espresso and an orange juice
- 1000 – First beer and toast to fellow crews and skippers “Have a happy Hvarday”
- 1000 to 1330 – Mingling between crews on TYW dock, sharing drinks and amusing stories of the week
- 1330 – A queue starts forming on the dock outside the Crew Boat for the infamous party
- 1430 – No one is left on the TYW dock, everyone is in the queue waiting with slightly nervous anticipation
- 1500 – Doors to the Crew Boat Party open
- 1530 – Crew Boat leaves – people who’ve made it onto the Crew Boat observe (with a slight sense of schadenfreude) the people who were too late walk back to the boat
- 1730 – Crew Boat Party finishes – everyone pours onto Hvar’s palm-lined riva and into Carpe Diem Bar
- 1730 – 2000 – TYW becomes the tourist attraction of the afternoon on the riva
- 2000 – Everyone grabs a bite and recuperates for what is to come…
- 0100 – Suitably revived and refreshed, guests hop on taxi boats leaving for Carpe Diem Beach Club
- 0800 – TYW survivors eventually make it back to the boat for a well deserved sleep
This year the excitement of both crews and skippers has been heightened by the introduction of the party on the Crew Boat which ferries both crews and skippers from Palmižana Marina to Carpe Diem Bar in Hvar. There is a serious debate among skippers whether this party is in fact better than the after beach party in Carpe Diem. We still don’t know! But what we do know is with Crew Boat places being limited you certainly don’t want to be the crew doing the walk of shame!
Carpe Diem Beach Club will always remain a favourite for anyone who has experienced TYW and it has a special place in everyone’s hearts. Memories of dancing on tables and podiums with pitchers of mojitos will never be forgotten. It is always a sad moment every week when the sun goes down behind the hills on the far side of the harbour and resounding chants of “One more song, One more song, One more song!” pleadingly arise.
However not all hope is lost and for those with the stamina to survive the 5 hour wait in Hvar – Carpe Diem Island soon beckons. Known as ‘Alcatraz’ among skippers, it is common knowledge that once you get there you won’t be getting back to your boat until the early hours in the morning.
So wherever you are reading this – HAVE A HAPPY HVARDAY!