Just Launched

Two blue­wa­ter boats and a hot new week­ender

SAIL - - Contents - By Peter Nielsen

Two new blue­wa­ter cruis­ers, and a hot-look­ing day­sailer

In the world of ded­i­cated blue­wa­ter cruis­ing boats, Amel’s turnkey cruis­ers have won a strong and de­voted fol­low­ing. The French builder doesn’t re­lease new mod­els very of­ten, which is why it’s a plea­sure to see the ren­der­ings of the new Amel 50. This cen­ter cock­pit boat is bound to raise some eye­brows among tra­di­tion­al­ists, though. It is a sloop, not a ketch, and its twin rud­ders, bluff bow and slight re­verse sheer sig­nify a new look, if not a new di­rec­tion, for Amel.

Why did the mizzen get the boot? As de­signer Olivier Ra­cou­peau ac­knowl­edges, mod­ern pow­ered winches and push-but­ton furl­ing make it so easy to han­dle a sloop rig that the prime rea­son for a split rig—ease of han­dling— has be­come re­dun­dant. The hull form is de­signed for good all-round per­for­mance, but its long wa­ter­line and broad hindquar­ters sug­gest it will come into its own off the wind.

The in­te­rior styling is ul­tra-mod­ern yet prac­ti­cal, and is flooded with light through large hull ports and deck hatches. The three­cabin lay­out can be fin­ished in a choice of trims and in­cludes a sump­tu­ous mas­ter state­room aft, with an en­suite heads. The two for­ward cab­ins share a heads/shower.

Amels have al­ways come fully equipped for ocean cruis­ing, and the 50 is no dif­fer­ent. The pack­age in­cludes ground tackle, elec­tron­ics, sails and just about ev­ery­thing else you could want as stan­dard, though AC is rel­e­gated to the op­tions list.

Amel hopes this new look will ap­peal to new cus­tomers, as well as the cognoscenti who are al­ready aware of the brand’s long his­tory.

An­other sto­ried French brand, Wauquiez, has shrugged off some re­ces­sion-in­duced malaise to come back with a new model. The Pi­lot Sa­loon 58 is a hand­some and mus­cu­lar cruiser, of­fer­ing a blend of speed, com­fort and safety that should tick most boxes on an as­pir­ing cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tor’s wish list.

The boat’s prime sell­ing fea­ture—bold styling aside—is the op­u­lent sa­loon that, un­like some other so-called deck sa­loon boats, of­fers truly panoramic vis­i­bil­ity to its seated oc­cu­pants. Look closer, though, and you’ll see lots of small but im­por­tant de­tails that re­flect Wauquiez’s lengthy his­tory of build­ing tough all-round sail­ing boats—for ex­am­ple, a plethora of hand­holds scat­tered about the vo­lu­mi­nous in­te­rior, some­thing many builders tend to omit.

A va­ri­ety of “mix & match” op­tions for the ac­com­mo­da­tions of­fers plenty of lat­i­tude for own­ers to cus­tom­ize the boat. In the cock­pit, all sail con­trols are led aft to pow­ered winches at the helms, keep­ing the long set­tees clear for re­lax­ing. Ac­cess to the wa­ter is via a drop-down tran­som that re­veals a large dinghy garage—no davits will sully the clean lines of this boat.

Ber­ret-Ra­cou­peau Yacht De­sign drew a mod­er­ately pro­por­tioned hull form that should per­form well on all points of sail. There is a sin­gle rud­der and a choice of three keels: shoal, stan­dard and deep. A self-tack­ing jib and furl­ing main­sail will make life easy for the crew.

Hol­land’s Saffier Yachts is largely unknown on this side of the At­lantic, but now that the builder has sold sev­eral boats into the United States, that is bound to change. Its lat­est model is the Se 37 Lounge, a strik­ingly good-look­ing week­ender that’s set up for solo sail­ing.

The twin wheels are set just abaft the com­pan­ion­way, an un­usual lay­out that al­lows the helmsper­son to work both sheets and hal­yards with­out leav­ing the helm. All lines run aft un­der the cab­in­top and side decks. This ar­range­ment lets guests en­joy the sail­ing in the af­ter part of the cock­pit, out of the way of the work­ing crew.

Belowdecks, there’s an en­closed head, a small gal­ley and room to sleep four. What more could you want?

Saffier takes pride in the fact that its boats all cope well with heavy weather—as they should, con­sid­er­ing they are de­signed and built for the North Sea, as gnarly a piece of wa­ter as you’ll find any­where. s

Amel 50

Wauquiez Pi­lot Sa­loon 58

Saffier Se37

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.