As one of the world’s biggest players in “comfort systems for pleasure boats”, Dometic has its fingers in plenty of pies. In the last month alone, it has introduced a very voguish remote for handheld operation of your on board gear, plus an odour-filtration system, an automatic watermaker with mechanical backup, a new compact chiller drawer and a 12v coffee maker for those who have yet to learn that tea is by far the superior drink.

All of which might make excellent Christmas presents, but if you need more ideas try: 10 perfect Christmas gifts for sailors or 8 special Christmas gifts for powerboaters.

Dometic cup cooler

The Cup Cooler from Dometic makes a great stocking filler.

However, the really interesting news is the company’s new Cup Cooler. Yes, I know it sounds a bit pedestrian but as “the marine industry’s first thermoelectric refrigerated cup holder”, not only is it something you can afford but it’s also something that might demonstrably improve your boat.

Developed to keep drinks chilled even in high ambient temperatures, this marine-specific, open-top thermoelectric cylinder simply slots into the space vacated by any standard four-inch cup holder. It is designed to accommodate standard drinks cans, as well as bottles of up to 591ml and an angled insert in the base keeps bottles, cans or cups in direct physical contact with the sidewall cooling element.

For flush-mount installation, all you need is six inches of surrounding space to enable the dissipation of heat below the surface. It comes with a marine-grade 316 stainless steel trim ring, a corrosion-resistant aluminium lining and a pair of blue LED interior lights to help pimp things up when the sun goes down. A built-in drain eliminates the build up of condensation, rain or seawater and wiring is simple too. With a draw of 3 amps, the cooler is wired to the domestic battery, controlled by a single switch and protected by a low-voltage cut-off, a high-heat trip and an in-line fuse.

Of course, Dometic’s suggestion that the Cup Cooler will “bring a new element of luxury and comfort” to your boat is probably overstating things a bit - but for DIY halfwits like me, this simple retrofit upgrade makes the perfect winter job. It’s cheap, it’s easy and it will win you a disproportionate amount of glory when you finally get the chance to show it off next spring.

Written by: Alex Smith
Alex Smith is a journalist, copywriter and magazine editor with a long history in boating and a happy addiction to the water. He’s worked on boats, lived on boats, bought boats, sold boats and – when he’s not actually on board a boat – he can generally be found in his Folkestone office, tapping away at the computer and gazing out to sea.