Carver C34 Coupe

Power & Motor Yacht - - NEW BOATS - Carver Yachts, 920-8223214; carvery­

If you’ve been hang­ing around the docks for a while, you know that ev­ery boat is a com­pro­mise. And on those same docks you prob­a­bly learned that boats from Carver Yachts play the space game well, with at­ten­tion to hu­man-size ar­eas long on vol­ume and fea­tures.

“We’ve come out with a lot of models over the past four years and dur­ing that time you get a lot of feed­back from deal­ers and cus­tomers,” says Josh Delforge, vice pres­i­dent of de­sign and engi­neer­ing at Mar­quis and Carver Yachts. “Af­ter we fin­ished the C52 Coupe we were hav­ing some dis­cus­sions about what the next project was go­ing to be. Our best-sell­ing model is the C37 Coupe so we wanted to do some­thing that was smaller and a lit­tle more af­ford­able.”

Turns out Carver doesn’t use boat shows only to in­tro­duce models to the pub­lic. The com­pany also makes sure to speak to its deal­ers, and show them de­signs of things to come. This helps the deal­ers prime the pump with their clients, but the de­sign teams also get in­sight from deal­ers, who deal with cus­tomers on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.

“We had this lay­out done in a more tra­di­tional way at the 2016 Ft. Laud­erdale boat show,” Delforge says. “It had an is­land berth with all the bulk­heads that we would typ­i­cally do—very tra­di­tional at the be­gin­ning stages of the de­sign. We met with our deal­ers and I spread out the draw­ings and we talked through it.” The de­sign team lis­tened closely and re­worked the de­sign.

That hand­i­work was ev­i­dent when I climbed aboard the re­designed—and built—C34 Coupe. From the swim plat­form, there are two steps up through a tran­som door to a cock­pit with an L-shaped set­tee to port. A slid­ing door grants en­try to the salon, sur­rounded by huge win­dows, with a lounge with hi-lo ta­ble to port and a gal­ley to star­board. The gal­ley con­sole abuts the back of the sin­gle helm chair. The helm of­fers a nice perch with clear sight­lines all around the boat.

I took three riser-less steps down to the lower deck, where this de­sign re­ally shifts into high gear. The first thing I no­ticed was the berth, athwartships in the bow—but wait, was it truly trans­verse? I looked at the ceil­ings to ei­ther side, try­ing to ori­ent my­self in the space, and no­ticed that the hull­side win­dows, which nar­row as they come for­ward, ap­peared to be asym­met­ri­cal. I took a step back and saw a lounge seat to port and a head com­part­ment to star­board, with the shower at the for­ward end. Then I saw it, a guide­post to help me ori­ent my­self: Through a hatch in the over­head, I caught a glimpse of the bowrail with a re­mote spotlight on it. On tip­toe, I con­firmed the light was cen­tered on the bow.

“It was the dis­cus­sion with the deal­ers that sparked the change,” Delforge says. “One of the deal­ers said, What if you made the foot of the bed par­al­lel with the bulk­head for the shower and just opened things up? The bed is is not per­fectly trans­verse, so it does skew the whole room to max­i­mize the space.” The open plan, in­clud­ing the mid­ships berth abaft the stairs, all can breathe thanks to the lack of bulk­heads.

“We wanted it to be the ul­ti­mate cou­ple’s boat,” Delforge says. “If you were just a cou­ple you would like it to be an owner’s suite. But we also gave the flex­i­bil­ity so if some­body had a fam­ily the boat could be func­tional both ways. But it was re­ally de­signed to be the ul­ti­mate cou­ple’s boat.” — Ja­son Y. Wood

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