Open Sailing, Inc

Open Sailing originally started in November 2005 as Sailing Sportboats. In August 2008 we became OPEN SAILING, INC. Built on the foundations laid by Sailing Sportboats the company strives to promote the sport of sailing. Our focus is on high performance sailing, both inshore and offshore, the goal is to make sailing fun, easy, and fast – without compromising safety.

Open Sailing offers a variety of sailboats originally designed by renowned FINOT ARCHITECT GROUP in France

the Open 5.00 – a 16 foot day sailor, perfect for two adults or three to four kids. The boat features a swing keel and modern deck layout with asymmetrical spinnaker. The boat is made in France and is a perfect blend of fun for all age – easy to handle and beachable!
the Open 5.70 – the “Smallest Boat and the Largest Fleet” in California! The Open 5.70 is almost 19 feet but feels like a 25 foot boat capable of taking up to 5 sailors aboard. The boat is simple, fast, and fun. It has twin rudders, a long torpedo keel, a rotating mast, and an asymmetrical spinnaker. The Open 5.70 can do it all, single handed sailing, double handed, one design around the buoys, and more. Your boat speed will be in the mid teens shortly after leaving the dock! The Open 5.70 is built in Southern California by Open Sailing who are the North American Licensed Builder.
the Open 6.50 – a full carbon fiber high performance racer. The boat is made in France using prepreg carbon fiber and cured in autoclave. The boat is fast. So fast that it often competes against boats that are twice its size. The Open 6.50 will satisfy even the most extreme adrenaline junkie.
the Pogo 2 – the latest boat to be built by Open Sailing. The Pogo 2 is a Mini Transat, designed and built to sail offshore. The boat is only 21 feet but carries a wide beam of 10 feet. The boat can sleep four and can also be used as a little weekend cruiser. It is designed to be sailed single handed and is a perfect boat for a family who requires safety and high performance.
Each of these boats have grown in Europe to be amongst some of the largest one-design classes for both inshore and offshore racing. Offering a perfect blend of performance, excitement, simplicity, and safety they appeal to a wide spectrum of sailors. Whether it is day-sailing or one-design racing, with either your friends or your family, the Open boats guarantee a great sailing experience in almost any condition.

In late 2008 Open Sailing acquired the rights to start building the Open 570 right here in Southern California. After working closely with the French builder the US boats being produced meet all the one-design specifications and high standards that existing owners have become accustomed to. More recently, late 2010, Open Sailing also started the production of the Pogo 2. Open Sailing is currently the only Mini Transat builder in North America.

Open Sailing prides itself on its support for the one-design Class Associations. Open Sailing is also very active and promotes and campaigns both the Open 5.70 and the Pogo 2 nationwide. We offer the highest possible level of customer support and services to all our owners to ensure they get the most out of their boat. These services include personal delivery, private tuition, online documentation, spare/replacements parts, and always a smile!

The Open Sailing Center, located at the gateway to all boating activities in Marina Del Rey, CA, is the heart of Open Sailing. At this premium location not only do we offer the opportunity to see and learn more about the boats we build and sell we also offer a wide range of sailing services & accessories including: sailing lessons, boat storage, boat maintenance & repairs, sailing gear, electronics, and more.

Combine all this with our extensive knowledge of inshore and offshore sailing, years of racing experience, good sense of humor, and Open Sailing becomes a THE place for all your sport boat sailing needs.

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Jerome Sammarcelli

Jerome was born in 1974 in Bordeaux, France. His parents barely made it back to the dock for his mother to deliver. In other words, like many of you, Jerome grew up sailing and racing with his family (sisters and brother), through the junior program of the “Cercle de Voile de Bordeaux”, then later at the “Ecole de Voile Rochelaise”. Later, in college, Jerome raced and worked for HC Europe, under the wing of Eric Proust, still one of the best F18 racer out there.

Jerome went through the usual learning boats: opti, laser, 420, 470 and Europe Dinghy (just before the boat was replaced by the Finn) and finally moved to boats a bit more extreme with the laser 5000, some other skiffs (early nineties in Europe) and high performance beach catamarans. During high school and college, Jerome was also introduced to keelboat racing with his uncle on a Beneteau Figaro Solo. At the time, his uncle could not afford the auto pilot so Jerome was simply steering the boat when his uncle was practicing (and therefore taking a nap down below). Part of his experience was multiple keelboat racing along the Atlantic coast, to the Golfe de Cascogne and in the Mediterranean.

This is no secret that Jerome moved to the USA “because of a girl”. Thirteen years later, now U.S. citizen, he is still happily married to the same Santa Barbara Californian hottie! She is not a sailor, which is probably good. Since that day Jerome owned different boats, from beach catamarans to high performance skiffs. Not being tempted by any other one design classes in the country, Jerome decided to create “his own” class, and this is pretty much how the first Open 5.70 appeared in the USA.

Jerome created the company “Sailing Sportboats” in 2006, then became president of “Open Sailing, Inc.” later in 2008 with Nik Vale. Jerome’s past work experience in purchasing, logistics, and his sailing connections in France made it possible to import the French designed boats to the USA. Jerome’s goal was to introduce the US market to the FINOT designs, other than those he created for Beneteau and Jeanneau. The choice was made with the Open boats, fast and highly powered day sailors.

Jerome remains a very active racer in Marina Del Rey, CA and beyond. He is a member of California Yacht Club, South Coast Corinthian Yacht Club, 2007 Staff Commodore of South Bay Yacht Racing Club and member of the Blue Gavel. Jerome is on the water as much as he can (that is about 5 days a week) and is considered a Category 2 sailor. As an ASA Instructor for the new Open Sailing High Performance School, Jerome plans on sailing even more often 😉

As of today, Jerome still owns an Open 5.70 (USA 275 Semi-Aquatic), an Open 6.50 (FRA 007 Chupacabric) and a rare yellow 1989 Hobie Cat 17!! His wife still refuses to sail on any of them!!


Nik Vale

Nik moved from England to California in May of 2001 to pursue a career in Software Engineering.

In 2002 a gift certificate to the OCC Sailing School launched his sailing career. After being bitten by sailing fever Nik found himself crewing on various sailboats in Southern California – one of those boats was owned by Jerome Sammarcelli. Nik raced with Jerome on a series of different boats each of which was more extreme than the last – starting with a Santana 525, followed by a Hotfoot 20, followed by a Martin 243 (skiff). As well as racing around the buoys Nik also sailed in numerous off shore races, including races to Catalina as well as the infamous Ensenada Races. From 2003-2005 Nik also raced on a J105 (as a main trimmer and tactician) that was competing in a very active one-design fleet and this led to a passion for one-design racing.

In 2006 Sailing Sportboats started importing the Open 5.70. After racing on Jerome’s Open 5.70 for 18 months Nik decided to buy his own Open 5.70, “Boracic”, in December 2007. Nik then went on to win the Open 5.70 One-Design Overall Winner trophy in 2008. Realizing the potential of the Open 5.70 Jerome and Nik joined forces and founded Open Sailing, Inc. in October of 2008.

Nik now works full time at Open Sailing, Inc. He sails, coaches and races on his Open 5.70 which is based out of Marina del Rey, CA. Nik also travels a lot with his boat with trips planned to San Francisco, Chicago, Oregon and even France for the Open 5.70 Worlds! He is also regular crew on a local Open 6.50 called “Crash” and owns a Fastacraft Prowler Moth that he is trying to learn to sail…