Things may still be frightful up north, but down in the Caribbean the weather is just fine, and the recently launched Jeanneau Sun Loft 47 looks like just the boat to take advantage of it. Designed by long-time Jeanneau collaborator Philippe Briand, the 47 is being billed as a “monocat” that offers best of all possible worlds, whether it be aboard one hull or two. The boat is also being positioned as the ideal charter platform, with as many six cabins and four separate shower/heads compartments accommodating up to 12 people.
Central to the boat’s multihull nature is an enormous cockpit reminiscent of the large aft cockpits found aboard cruising cats. Specific features include a topside galley, a large sunshade overhead that works with the boat’s dodger to keep you out of the weather, and plenty of cockpit bench and lounging space, including a large drop-down swim step in the transom. The boat’s generous beam, twin rudders and hull chines will also help keep the 47 on its feet when the wind picks up.
Moving forward, the boat’s side decks are kept well clear, with the upper shrouds terminating outboard while the diagonals end up just outside the cabinhouse. A self-tacking jib will make coming about a breeze, and a reaching sail can be flown from the sprit. Equally impressive is the way Briand was able to pack so much into a mid-sized yacht without compromising its aesthetic qualities. Look to see plenty of these boats zipping round the sunnier parts of the world in the years to come, both under private ownership and on charter.
Meanwhile, over at Dufour, things have also been busy of late, ever since the company merged with catamaran builder Fountaine-Pajot and promptly announced it would be bringing out four new designs—including the Dufour 530, which recently made its debut at Germany’s Düsseldorf boat show.
Designed by Umberto Felci, the boat is available in three different versions—“easy,” for owners and charterers in search of simplicity; “ocean,” (shown at left) for those sailors looking for a little more boatspeed and better sailor controls; and “performance,” for those interested in more serious racing, which comes with a deeper T-keel, more sail area and racy-looking topside graphics.
Four different layouts are also available, with anywhere from three to six cabins (the latter configuration designed to appeal to the charter industry), and all three types coming with a fixed sprit for keeping the anchor clear of the plumb bow and flying a gennaker. Particular attention has been paid to the fully-enclosed cockpit area, which includes a galley complete with grill and sink; optional built-in telescopic dinghy davits; and a huge drop-down swim platform. A special step between the cockpit benches and twin helms provides a clear passageway to the boat’s side decks, and there’s the option of a large sun pad between the helms, which also provides additional storage space.
Belowdecks, the boat offers scads of both volume and ambient light in the saloon, which also features Dufour’s trademark forward galley spanning the width of the boat just aft of the owner’s cabin in the bow. Expect to see plenty of these boats in the years to come as well.
Dufour Yachts dufour-yachts.com