Former sailing athlete Xu Bin, 24, is now working as a sailing ship trainer and yacht driver for the St. Valentine International Sailing Club at Qingdao, Shandong province, which is known for its wedding photo services.
|Two models ride the crest of a wave during an advert-|
ising photo shoot. [Photo: China Daily]
The club has three yachts, on which young couples can pose for their wedding photos.
"Many young people have longings for the sea and the life on the sea, which are represented by being on a yacht," Xu says. "Besides, you get beautiful scenes of the city from the sea."
Though charged a minimum 10,000 yuan ($1,475) for a photo journey on the yachts, an average of five couples line up for the service every day, almost half of which come from other cities, he says.
In 2004, group weddings were also popular at Yinhai Yachts Marina. Now couples prefer to rent yachts to host offshore ceremonies, Xu says.
Hangzhou-based City Express reported a yacht wedding in Zhoushan, Zhejiang province in May 2009. The bridegroom Hu Qingjiang rented two yachts to sail from Ningbo to Zhoushan to pick up the bride and hold the ceremony at sea. Upon seeing the yachts approaching, the bride almost fainted in ecstasy, reported the newspaper.
Born in Jinan, Shandong's capital, Xu took courses at Yinhai Yacht Driving Training School for the license.
"I like the challenges on the sea," he says. "One of my friends even tells me that whenever he's puzzled in everyday life, he goes to seek answers on the sea."
"And it never fails him," he adds.
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