West­port Strikes Gold

WITH ITS NEW 125, WEST­PORT SHIP­YARDS LIS­TENED TO CUS­TOMERS AND SUR­PRISED THEM AS WELL.

Yachts International - - Contents - BY DIANE M. BYRNE

With its new 125, West­port Ship­yards lis­tened to cus­tomers and sur­prised them as well.

dic­tates lis­ten­ing to your cus­tomers, which is why, in the yacht­ing in­dus­try, a healthy por­tion of new mod­els stem di­rectly from client re­quests. The West­port 125, of which Black Gold is the first de­liv­ery, is the lat­est ex­am­ple. She ad­dresses is­sues raised by own­ers of the long-pro­duced West­port 112 who didn’t want to move up to the West­port 130, which would force them to switch from a raised-pi­lot­house to a trideck.

West­port could have elim­i­nated the 130 and re­placed her with a smaller, nearly iden­ti­cal model, but in­stead, the builder cre­ated the West­port 125—the first new model from the Wash­ing­ton state yacht­builder in a decade.

Over the years, the 112 and 130 have evolved in terms of lay­outs and in­te­rior fea­tures, but West­port did not shake things up be­yond that. Clients have con­tin­ued to want both mod­els: The builder has de­liv­ered 66 units in its 112 se­ries, with three more un­der con­struc­tion. Forty-two 130s are out on the wa­ter.

In de­sign­ing the 125, West­port looked at what clients liked about both the 112 and the 130. The roomi­ness of the 130 held great ap­peal, so the builder’s in-house de­sign staff spec­i­fied the same beam, 26 feet 2 inches, for the new se­ries. The 125 thus has a strong sense of vol­ume, putting sim­i­lar-length yachts on no­tice.

Equip­ping the 125 with a raised pi­lot­house akin to that of the 112 solved the prob­lem of cus­tomers be­ing over­whelmed by a trideck. When it came to draft, each ex­ist­ing model was skinny-wa­ter friendly, so the de­sign team gave the 125 a 5-foot-9-inch draft. That’s just 3 inches more than the 112’s draft and a full 9 inches shal­lower than the 130’s.

West­port’s de­sign­ers used the 112 as the ref­er­ence for per­for­mance, too.

While all three mod­els are pow­ered by twin MTU 16V 2000 en­gines, the 125 sees the same speeds and range as the 112. That means a re­ported top end of 25 knots and best range of 2,500 nau­ti­cal miles at 12 knots. The 125 does have a higher fuel ca­pac­ity than the 112, with 7,065 gal­lons ver­sus 5,480 gal­lons.

In ad­di­tion to the sim­i­lar­i­ties with pre­vi­ous mod­els, West­port in­cluded sur­pris­ing fea­tures that led Black Gold’s owner, who stepped up from a 112, to com­mis­sion her, plus an­other cus­tomer to sign up be­fore she splashed.

One of those fea­tures is a beach club—a real beach club, not a double-duty space. Yachts in this size range typ­i­cally have ei­ther a ten­der garage or a garage used for loung­ing af­ter the toys are in the wa­ter. Even then, the space mostly re­sem­bles a garage. West­port ded­i­cates the area on the 125 en­tirely to TV watch­ing, hori­zon gaz­ing and con­ver­sa­tion. There’s also a day­head. The beach club is ac­ces­si­ble via a lift-up tran­som hatch with a cen­tral door to al­low the crew quick tran­sit to the en­gine room.

The ten­der, in­stead of be­ing in a garage, sits abaft the pi­lot­house, and the re­lax­ation area that might have gone there is in­stead at the bow, with a sun­pad in ad­di­tion to seat­ing.

In­side, the mas­ter suite’s con­fig­u­ra­tion holds an­other sur­prise, one ben­e­fit­ting the owner of Black Gold as well as the crew. Si­t­u­ated for­ward on the main deck, the mas­ter has a vestibule-like en­try with doors fore and aft. The aft doors are ac­cessed from the same foyer that leads to the coun­try kitchen. So, on morn­ings

when the owner feels like sleep­ing in, the crew can qui­etly set up cof­fee. It’s a level of pri­vacy typ­i­cally re­served for larger, and fully cus­tom, yachts.

The coun­try kitchen it­self has pocket doors that re­spect the pri­vacy of guests in the sa­lon. Guests who want to eat in the gal­ley will find a dinette with barstools lin­ing the prep counter. The lay­out is rem­i­nis­cent of a chef ’s ta­ble at a fine restau­rant.

Even with the 125 hav­ing her own na­ture, West­port isn’t shun­ning some tra­di­tions. Buy­ers can col­lab­o­rate with the builder’s in-house de­sign staff or work with their fa­vorite in­te­rior de­signer in choos­ing woods (sapele ma­hogany is stan­dard), fab­rics and stones. Non-struc­tural bulk­heads can be moved to cre­ate rooms that suit var­i­ous needs. While eight guests can stay belowdecks in the stan­dard ac­com­mo­da­tions plan, a gym and three guest state­rooms are pos­si­ble.

One of the three 125-foot hulls now in build is not yet un­der con­tract with an owner, and is avail­able for cus­tomiza­tion prior to launch. And who knows? Some of the re­sult­ing con­fig­u­ra­tions might in­spire West­port to in­cor­po­rate them in fu­ture 125s. The builder will be sure to give credit where it’s due.

Above: Industrial de­tails in the art­work be­hind the for­mal din­ing ta­ble. be­low: With a stone prep counter, barstools and din­ing nook, the coun­try kitchen beck­ons guests to en­ter and en­joy.

This page: Be­ing a semi­cus­tom yacht, the West­port 125 al­lows own­ers to per­son­al­ize the decor down to handrails and hard­ware. They can move non­struc­tural bulk­heads, though Black Gold’s owner kept the sa­lon and din­ing area tra­di­tional.

Above: It’s rare to find a true beach club in a yacht of this size. above: The raised pi­lot­house sat­is­fies West­port clients ready to step up from the 112, as well as clients com­ing over from other builders’ sim­i­larly styled mod­els. bot­tom: The stan­dard ac

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