Harbour Marine Services

Incorporating Southwold & Ipswich Boatyards


HMS regularly take on refits for minor and major works and in the late Summer of 2017 we were approached by a couple who had bought a second hand Southerly 365. They had been looking for a new boat which ticked their wish list with no joy, after spending a huge amount of time researching they reached the conclusion that it would be better to buy a second-hand boat with a layout they liked and have it completely refitted. They had heard on the grapevine HMS was the place to come!

She soon arrived by sea and the project started with everything being stripped out, the great thing about starting with a blank canvas or empty shell is the owners were able to put in all the latest marine electronics and technology behind panels and furnishings.

In September John accompanied the owners to the Southampton boat show with a huge shopping list and they spent a couple of days meeting with suppliers and negotiating prices for the items they required. This was a great thing to do and saved a lot of time and money for the customer.

After a few weeks Okura was brought into shed 2 for the transformation to begin. It’s fair to say this project has ended up being more of a rebuild than a refit, everything has been replaced with many things custom built. So much work has been completed behind the scenes and like many projects we have encountered problems along the way which have slowed progress, but the highly skilled HMS team have overcome these hurdles with solutions.  Nearly two years down the road there is still a fair amount to do before completion but there is finally light at the end of the tunnel. This type of project is not for the fainthearted and you certainly need a healthy budget, but the end result will be a yacht which exactly meets the specification the owners wanted and hopefully they will have many years of happy sailing.

Latest Updates

Okura update August 2021:

With Okura now in the water the race is on for completion, the lists are getting shorter and we are nearly there. The owners gave me a fabulous guided tour to see the progress.

The fabulous lighting and their amazing attention to detail have turned Okura in something really special.

Okura Video

Okura update August 2021:

It’s been a really busy week on Okura, there is still a way to go, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. It was so nice to see her finally launched, watched by Alistair and Sarah the owners, it’s amazing how the look of a boat can change when you put it on the water. We were very happy with the waterline, the lift up bathing platform and the bespoke arch which all worked well and looked totally in proportion with the mast height. Art the electrician and Alistair the owner have been finishing the complex electronics, it was like looking in an BT open reach substation with all the tangle of organised wires!

Okura update August 2021:

Today was a big day for the team as Okura made her way out of the boat shed after an extensive refit. Everyone held their breath as John manoeuvred her through the doors and we were all wondering if the additional bits we have added would fit through the doors on the way out! All under the watchful eye of the owner! No pressure then! Thankfully it all went smoothly.

Okura update May 2021:

With the cabins looking almost complete there has been a lot of work going on behind the scenes and those finishing touches to cross off the job list.

Okura update April 2021:

With the complex wiring nearing completion Rachel and Darren have been busy with the finishing touches on the woodwork and headlining as she is starting to look really smart.

Okura update January 2021:

The owner has been heavily involved in the design an installation of the electrics and although progress has been slow you can see from the photos the complexity of the wiring and the sheer volume of wires!

Okura update:

Okura’s aft cabin was looking really smart today after the team had finished varnishing.

Okura update:

Parts of the interior are almost complete, this is the forward cabin and the heads, the inside of the cupboard doors had just been varnished and drying hence they were all open looking untidy.

Okura update:

Okura’s interior is starting to take shape as we get nearer to completion.

Okura Gallery

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