Snooze again, lose again…

I’ve got more fast-breaking developments for you, loyal friends and clients, coming in from all 32 points of the compass. That would include:

  1. Another Zeelander sale;
  2. Another new summer event where you can experience our new Zeelander 55;
  3. Another cool update on said fine yacht; and,
  4. Another Zeelander 72 opportunity.

I’m sure you are all out and about on the water, so I will keep this brief. But right off the bat, check out today’s review of our Zeelander 55 in the Robb Report:

1. A second Snoozeagram!

Yup, two snoozeagrams in two weeks! Last week I reported that Makai, our Norwalk CT Zeelander 44 listing has found her new and happy owner.

Zeelander 44

Zeelander 44

This week I am thrilled to report that her 2012 Fort Lauderdale sistership is now under contract as well.

For the moment, that exhausts our east coast inventory of Z44 listings. However, there are two Z44’s for sale in California:

Zeelander 44 – Harvest Moon
  • Blush, a 2012 model listing for $575,000:
Zeelander 44 – Blush

If you are a West Coast boater, you can be cruising around in just a few weeks. If you are East Coast, I recommend you call me quickly (lest you end up on the wrong side of my next snoozeagram).

Over the years I’ve trucked a veritable small fleet of sold yachts cross-country, this way and that, and I’d be happy to take you through the in’s-and-out’s of the costs and procedures. And, as you’ve seen here on The Fog Warning, I’m intimately familiar with all things Zeelander. So just launch that flare and I’ll fill you in on the particulars.

2. Our Brand New Z55

Earlier this week I retrieved our new Zeelander 55 (at least until she becomes your new Zeelander 55) from her freighter in Newport:

https://vimeo.com/442816313
Norwalk bound…

Here’s my delivery report, short-form. By all means, if you have time, call for the longer version.

Long-time readers know I’ve been doing this for twenty years. And most of the $50m in fine yachts I’ve sold have been freighted over from Europe. So this is not (as they say) my first rodeo.

So I can say with deep context and full authority that in regard to this Zeelander 55, I have rarely seen a new yacht come in this flawlessly. I’ve spent most of this week exploring every nook and cranny, testing every system, and checking every last lightbulb. I find her as close to perfect as a new yacht can be. And, I’ll add, she features just about the best paint job I’ve ever seen. Yup, yup.

Her 108 mile run to our Norwalk docks was equally flawless:

https://vimeo.com/442818543

Between today and August 6th she’s docked at our Norwalk Cove Marina location, awaiting your private and unhurried inspection. Please call me for a viewing.

And after August 6th, buckle your seatbelts…

3. See us in Martha’s Vineyard!

Last week I shared with you the details of our Sag Harbor event, running from August 7th through the 13th at the town docks.

The foot of the Sag Harbor Town Dock

That will be quickly followed by our Montauk event, running from August 14th through the 16th at the Montauk Lake Club.

Montauk Lake Club

This week I am so excited to announce another event in Martha’s Vineyard!

You can find us at Edgartown’s elegant Harborside Inn for Labor Day Weekend, from September 5th through the 7th.

Harborside Inn, Martha’s Vineyard

All three of these events are by invitation only, and they have begun to fill up (particularly the Sag Harbor event).

Whether it be for Sag Harbor, Montauk, or Martha’s Vineyard, you can easily secure your appointment right HERE, and I urge you to do so quickly.

A Note on event safety: Long-time readers know I sign off my Fog Warning posts with one of two signatures: Either Big Wave Dave (a name given me when I fell overboard at a boat show) or Safety Dave (a name given me by my kids, in some exasperation).

All things considered, I prefer Safety Dave. And under that title I can talk a bit about our safety protocols at the coming events. We’ve been showing the Z55 in Norwalk, as well as the two Z44’s we just sold under these conditions, and we’ve figured out how to do it both safely and comfortably. Your comfort and safety is our top concern. Safety Dave wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

4. And, of course, our Z72

Last week I hinted rather broadly at a possible Zeelander 72 opportunity for you. I now have more info.

As you may recall, our next scheduled Z72 (#4) is to arrive in January 2021. She will be immediately preceded by #3 shipping this September to Florida, shown here:

Z72 September 2020 Delivery
Z72 #3, as equipped with portable beach.

For those of you in a hurry, this September delivery can now be available to you. Please call me for the details.

Well, you’ve seen here today lots of fast-moving going’s on here at Team Zeelander. There’s nothing I’d like more than to make you a member of the Zeelander family. Your first step (To quote Carol King her friend Sweet Baby James); All you gotta do is call.

https://youtu.be/6ZHdxYf-5Pk

See you in Norwalk, Sag, Montauk, or Martha’s Vineyard. Or all of the above!

Big Wave Dave

Blade Seaplane, Nantucket.

 

The fast, the blue, and the custom…

This week, loyal clients and readers, we go through three iterations of fine yachts – The fast, the blue, and the custom!

Fast Boats!

I’ve run a couple of big boats (+20 meters) at 50 knots and more, and what they all had in common was their drivetrains: Surface-drive propulsion. If you want to drive a big boat fast, with reasonable accommodations and tolerable decibel levels, surface drives (commonly known as Arneson drives) are an obvious solution.

Here’s a fairly typical example – a Pershing 64 at 47 knots:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sb-bNjE1r1k

As you’ll see here, there’s a lot of hardware at play with these drives:

The engineering is complicated, as shown here in comparison with straight shaft drives:

In my experience, these drives do work as advertised. But as in all things nautical, there are costs and tradeoffs. For example:

  • The boat must be designed and built for them up front. They can’t be retrofitted to an existing boat. In particular, transom shape and engine room size and layout (particular for the transmissions) must be custom designed and built for these drives.
  • Most applications have little or no capacity for trimming at speed. That means be prepared for some wet and rough rides.
  • Handling in reverse can be an “all-hands-on-deck” maneuver. I’ve done it. Trust me, you don’t want to.

Whatever the tradeoffs, many military vessels use these drives routinely. When you have to go 50+ knots, you do what you gotta do.

Now, we have just this month launched our Zeelander 72 (hull #1), with triple 1200 IPS drives! Click away for a great video of her very first sea trial. Listen carefully and you’ll hear the whir of press cameras clicking away:

Zeelander 72 Sea Trial #1!

 

And, as you’ll see here, she hit her design speed on there very first run!

The Proof

While 43 knots is some 10% less than surface drive installations, I will share with you here and now a little known industry secret – 43 knots is as fast as an IPS boat is allowed to go! Why, you might ask? Because….

IPS drives are speed-governed by the engine manufacturers!

Yup, the powers-that-be do not permit IPS-driven boats to exceed 43 knots in speed.

Why? Concerns about high speed prop cavitation.

And since all designs must be pre-approved by the engine manufacturers, it’s just not going to happen. In fact, builders who so much as modify the propellors will lose their build license. 

So, 43 knots it is, and 43 knots is what our Zeelander 72 delivers!

Here she is the day before her launch:

Zeelander 72

And here is the big news: I would be delighted to demonstrate this performance to you in person, in New York!

On June 22, 2019 hull #1 will be in Manhattan for a major press event, and a small number of sea trials are available for my clients. Please call me quickly for a reservation, as I expect slots will go fast. As in, 43-knots fast!

Blue Boats!

They’re referred to by many names – lobster boats, down east boats, and, as I hear at boat shows all the time, “those Hinckley-looking things.” Whatever you call them, they have been the main focus of my career for the past twenty years. Long time readers of The Fog Warning and The Vicem Report know that my preferred term is its single word permutation – “downeast” boats. But the inside-baseball term many in our industry like to use is Blue Boats. It’s easy to see why, as 95+% of them are Awlgrip Code “Flag Blue.” But there are exceptions! We’ve all seen some orange ones:

Mochicraft

Some yellow ones:

Hinckley 43

and striking “Sea Foam” versions, like Ojala, our 2011 Vicem 80 listing:

Vicem 80 – Ojala!

 

But for me the most historic model was the one that broke the color mold wide open among “blue boats” – Magpie, that amazing bright red yacht built up in Maine by Lyman Morse in 2006:

Magpie, by Lyman Morse

The owner of Mahagany Rose, our Vicem 67 brokerage listing, is from Maine. He was lucky enough to see Magpie’s inaugural cruise, and was wholly captivated by her red hull. When it came time to build his second Vicem (after his Flag Blue Vicem 52 Flybridge), he asked for “Magpie Red.” And that’s what he got!

Mahogany Rose – Vicem 67

That was ten years ago, about the lifespan of an awlgripped hull. When the time came to repaint her, he of course stuck with his favorite color. That paint job is now finishing up now, down in Charleston:

So if you have been waiting to see Mahogany Rose, you will be able to see her in all of her glory in two weeks. Please call me for an appointment. I promise a very special viewing of this very special yacht.

Here’s the complete listing:

Mahogany Rose Listing


Custom Boats!

The Zeelander 72, as you can see in New York on June 22nd has a striking new interior, quite different from what you have seen on previous Zeelanders. For example, here is the traditional Zeelander interior, as seen on our Z55:

Now here is our new Zeelander 72 (professional photography to follow in couple of week. Thanks for your patience):

 

This brighter, lighter interior will be a hit, I’m sure. But of course the traditional Zeelander interior will always be available, as will custom work of any kind.

For example, here are three artist impressions of alternative looks for the Zeelander 164‘s salon. Each of these approaches can be applied to your new Zeelander 55 or 72 as well:

On the subject of lighter and brighter, let’s talk about Ojala, our Vicem 80 listing. Vicem’s traditional interior, based around a dark and rich mahogany interior, is known worldwide. But it is not for everyone. For those who wanted a more European look, a lighter touch that shines on cloudy, dark days –  Vicem created this special look:

If this yacht rings your chimes like it does mine, I urge you to meet me in Miami and see her with your own eyes. You can find the complete listing below, but first, in answer to the many questions that have come in over my transom, here’s how the Vicem 80 compares to the Vicem 72:

For the full listing, click away:

Ojala, 2011 Vicem 80

Your Kando Update!

My final observation this week on that most unique of custom builds is an update on the Kando 34M project in Antalya. This is the one that occupies my dream life! She is currently “splash minus 42 days” away from her launch, and her hull color has now been decided upon, as seen here:

My final observation this week on custom builds is an update on that striking Kando 34M project in Antalya. This is the one that occupies most of my dream life! She is currently “splash minus 42 days” away from her launch, and her hull color has now been decided upon, as seen here:

Here are some photos taken just this week:

I will be there for her June sea trials, and then again at the Cannes Boat Show in September for her world premier. In the words of my high school classmate (John Dewey High School, Class of 1975) Academy Award winner Spike Lee:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GNn9mJBdK0

The truth is that back in high school we knew him as Shelton Lee. But in any event, please, baby, please join me at either of these exciting milestones in modern yachting!

And some final words….

I leave you with this, loyal clients and readers – a photo from my daughter’s wedding a few weeks ago. All I will say is this –

Do as I say, not as I did!

Tried, and failed….

Thanks for cruising with me, one and all. Any questions or comments, just launch that flare!

Big Wave Dave

Your Globe-circling Report

I have returned! With four cities and ten boats over five days under my jet-lagged belt, I’d like to share with you some of what I learned. Feel free to skim through until you find something you like, and trust that I’ll tie up all its diverse threads in a bow for you at the end of this post.

I. First Stop – The Hague!

Midway between Amsterdam and Rotterdam, I spent the day at the home of my wonderful “little” pocket yachts – Long Island Yachts:

The Long Island Yachts 40 Classic

You’ll see below that the LIY factory is humming along nicely. Having sold 80+ of these wonderful boats in Europe, I am convinced they can handle the US market with skill and dependability.

 
Cranking them out!
Ignore the smiling faces, and check out the gleaming gelcoat. A top-notch job!

I am so pleased to announce here for the first time that LIY is sending me a 33 Classic demo boat for the coming season! You’ll find this lovely beauty at my dock in Shelter Island this summer, and in harbors from Montauk to Essex. I look forward to showing you what she can do, but until then, enjoy this video and call me for pricing and availability.

 

https://youtu.be/bQmeZjShwLo
Long Island Yachts 33 Classic

II. The Zeelander 72 Launch

I was honored to be among Holland’s yachting elite for the launch party of Zeelander’s greatly anticipated 72. It was … incendiary! I’ve seen launches like this at Cannes and Monaco, but never a party of this scale at a factory.

Trust me, professional photography and videography will follow at length, but here are some early views to tide you over until then:

Almost 150 square feet of extended outdoor space
The Z55, Z44, and the Z72

You can see full coverage of this party, with additional photos right here:

https://www.zeelander.com/zeelander-z72-yard-launch-vip/

I spent a full day exploring this fine yacht, and here are my observations:

Long time readers know that 72’ yachts are the most common models I have sold – at least six or eight of them, from several builders, all with traditional straight-shaft power trains. It’s a footprint I know intimately!

The Zeelander 72 changed my space-planning expectations. The interior volume that intelligent IPS engine installations provide is just remarkable. Her total living area almost approaches that of my Vicem 85 model (albeit in a narrower beam). 

This was clear just about every place I looked:

  • Her master cabin is positively huge. The only time I’ve seen so much “empty” space around built-in furniture is on larger, mid-cabin master cabin yachts.
  • Although not terribly clear on the layout plan, she even has a walk-in closet to starboard.
  • Notably, each of the two guest cabins are quite large, almost the size of master cabins on many 58’ boat yachts.
  • What’s more, shower areas, often a space sacrifice in boats this size (particularly European builds), are voluminous here. 
  • Exterior space, particularly with what I estimate is a 150 square foot extended swim platform, is almost ridiculous! For entertaining, this boat could easily absorb a 20+ person cocktail party. 


My design quibbles are just two or three in number, and they are minor. Please feel free to reach out to me privately and I’d be happy to share them with you.

A brief discourse here, loyal readers, about global markets, and what they can mean for you….

Aboard the JUST SOLD Zeelander 55. Details below

Careful readers will note at the bottom of each page icons for the Russian and Chinese versions of The Fog Warning. They are becoming much-used services. How much so?

Currently 9% of all readers of The Fog Warning worldwide are from Russia!

3% are from China, by the way. But I’m working hard on increasing that number.

The Russian market is booming, and I find those clients to be among the most yacht-savvy boaters I have met. Case in point, the Zeelander 55 I’m shooting above has just been sold to a client in Russia. Here she is, the very next day, on her way to points east:

To continue this multi-lingual thread, in the last month I have received two inquires from the UAE about Ojala, our Vicem 80 listing:

Those inquiries have spurred me to add an Arabic version of The Fog Warning, and interested readers can find that new icon at the bottom of each page as well.

My point here, loyal readers and yacht owners, is that The Fog Warning’s global reach can be a huge asset in the sale of your fine yacht. Please call me to find out how my global reach can find a new home for your yacht.

OK, back to my Vicem 80! The number one question I receive about this yacht (formerly known as the Vicem 75, before the swim platform length was added to its overall measurement) is how she differs from the best-selling Vicem 72. Well, that is now an easy question to answer. You’ll see here how just a bit more length and a bit more height allows a comfortable fourth cabin to fit in nicely:

V72 vs. V75/80

The full listing for this Vicem 80 can be found below. And if you are coming to the Palm Beach Boat Show next week, I’d be happy to meet you in Miami to explore her together. I’d say she is certainly worth your time:

https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2011/vicem-80-flybridge-3515047/?refSource=standard%20listing

You will find me on D – Dock at the Palm Beach Show, under the Northrop & Johnson flags. I will be aboard the Zeelander 55 from March 28th through the 31st. I look forward to showing her to you there. But until then, this will have to suffice:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RK93b-vS47I

III. On to Istanbul!

I spent a great day with my friends from Vicem Yachts in Istanbul. I saw their almost done 68 Cruiser coming together, and you’ll be able to see her for yourself at the fall shows:


Vicem 68 Cruiser

Vicem is having an impressive line of yachts at the Palm Beach Show. They’re having a cocktail party on Thursday night, and you’ll see me there!

IV. And Finally, to Antalya

Antalya is a stunning historic Roman harbortown in the far south of Turkey. It is one of my favorite places on the planet, which is why this was perhaps my tenth trip there. It’s a sleepy, Mediterranean kind of place, as evidenced by my canine friend here:

I returned to Antalya to meet with AvA Yachts, the builder of the striking Kando line of go-anywhere steel/aluminum yachts.

They are finishing up hull #1 of the kendo 110, set to splash in six weeks:

And, I saw that they are two months in to hull #2, destined to deliver to NBA star Tony Parker in nineteen months:

In the end they will both look like this:

But they will have very different layouts. #1 is a five-cabin model, with the master cabin in the bow:

Five-cabin, master bow

To each his and her own, of course. But personally, I have a thing for aft-cabin masters. By putting the master cabin on the aft deck, you get an enormous “porch” at the foot of your bed, presenting wonderfully romantic “sunsets-in-bed.” After all, in the end ain’t it all about the romance?

Numarine does this with their line of explorer yachts. But as you’ll see here, that back porch view will usually be blocked by tenders and water toys:

Numarine 32XP

The Kando 110 (aft master) places the tender on the front deck, preserving those unblocked bedside sunsets:

Kando 110 six-cabin, aft master

As I say, to each his and her own. That’s the thing about yacht building in Turkey – You can always have it your way, usually at minimal extra cost!

V. And Home!

Finally, back to New York, for one week. Then I’m off to Zeelander-world at the Palm Beach Show. I do hope to see you there. But I’d like to leave you with this closing thought – A top industry executive once said this (kindly!) about my success in the boat biz:

“Dave may not be the absolute best broker in the industry. And he may not be the #1 hardest working broker in the industry. But he always shows up!”

Yah, showing up is what I do. So please consider letting me show up on your behalf, my loyal readers, sellers and buyers. You know me, I aim to please. And to deliver!

Thanks, and enjoy!

Big Wave Dave

You Snooze, You Lose!

I. You Snooze, You Lose….

Ah, Baron, we hardly knew ye!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, The Baron, our premier Vicem 72 Flybridge listing, is now under contract, and soon to make her 35-knot way to her new home.

 As a parting glance for you, my loyal readers, I leave you with the video that was watched over 31,000 times to date. My video production company really pulled out the stops for Baron, and they can do the same for any of my Fog Warning – listing clients  After all, doesn’t your yacht deserve this kind of marketing? Call me for the details.

II. And the Next Bullet in the Chamber?

I am so pleased to present to you my latest listing! Meet Ojala (Oh-hala) a truly remarkable 2011 Vicem 80 Flybridge from Key Biscayne:

Original Factory Photo

Owner’s, clients and long time readers of The Fog Warning know that Vicem’s larger Flybridge yachts are known far and near for their ability to take their family and guests just about anywhere, through just about anything, in safety and style. The only thing these models have lacked so far is a true four-cabin layout. That is exactly what Ojala delivers for you and yours:

 

I first ran this fine yacht when she splashed in Istanbul in 2011. Back then (before Vicem changed their model nomenclature to include swim platform measurements) she was known as the Vicem 75. I had the pleasure of studying her carefully for a couple of days last week, and found this yacht meets her mission of four-couple yachting superbly.

One of the many things that is remarkable about Ojala, even within the Vicem line, is her interior design choices. She was envisioned right from from her drawing board days as a yacht to showcase a lighter, European-style interior.  As Yachting Magazine said in their glowing review:

“She presents a thoroughly contemporary interior fit and finish, notable for her light anigre wood, complemented by wenge accents and trim, offset by her dark iroko sole.The combination works, and instead of jarring the senses, the interior is soothing, providing a canvas that will not compete with the scenery beyond the salon windows.”

I could not agree more. You can read the full review of this 30-knot yacht here:

Yachting Magazine reviews the Vicem 80 Flybridge

For a full video tour, click away. This was filmed before her current hull color was decided upon:

He owner’s are asking $1,790,000, and the comprehensive listing can be found here:

The Full Yachtworld Listing

Ojala means “Hopefully.” As in, hopefully I will meet you at her Key Biscayne dock for a private viewing soon. She’s not that far from Palm Beach, so if you are visiting my yachts at the boat show from March 28th through the 31st I’d happily run down and show her to you.

You know the drill, loyal readers ….. just launch a flare!

 

III. Wait….Another Bullet in the Chamber

And yet another fine yacht for your inspection! Not to be missed in Charleston is Mahogany Rose, my classic Vicem 67 listing. She has had a dramatic price reduction to $1,050,000, and is actively in search of her next owner. In two weeks her hull is scheduled to get a new paint job. If you’d like to see her just before, or just after her new look, let me know and I’m happy to give you the grand tour.

Click away for the full Yachtworld listing

 

IV. Adult Content Ahead…

The Baron video is not the only Fog Warning media to have gone viral. You may remember this Zeelander 55 video:

https://youtu.be/EBJn7Gql2jM

Well, not to be outdone, a Zeelander 55 owner in Europe suggested to me that his clip showed a better use of Zeelander’s remarkable swim platform design. He predicted that his would shortly surpass our Tango video in viewership.

Well, who am I to argue with this?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXZTfrlyWCM
Adult Content Warning

IV. Spanning The Globe For You

Yes, loyal readers, I’m off next week on your behalf – a three city/five day tour of some very fine yachts and their very skilled builders. First stop?

Rotterdam!

On March 15th Zeelander is proud and pleased to host the launch party of their first 72′ yacht:

To give you a sense of relative scale, here is their entire fleet:

It’s the full range of Zeelander’s offerings, and their design and build capabilities, that has made 2018 the best year in Zeelander’s history. You can read about their success here, and I invite you to ride the Zeelander wave with me:

https://www.powerboat-world.com/news/214208/Zeelander-Yachts-busy-2019-ahead

Please feel free to meet me at the Rotterdam factory on the 15th. I am assured it will be quite a party! Otherwise, I will be displaying a Zeelander 55 (sans nudes) at the Palm Beach Show at the end of March. Please let me know if you’d like some private time aboard her that week.

From there, on to…

Istanbul!

Back in the day, for almost a decade, I traveled to Istanbul perhaps eight or ten times a year. These days I try and go once or twice a year to keep up with all things yachting, to see old friends, and for the food (trust me, even in Manhattan authentic Turkish cuisine is hard to find!)

I’ve been hearing rumors that my friends at Vicem Yachts were planning something innovative and exciting in the coming year. So when they invited me over to hear the news first hand, I jumped at the chance. As someone who has been associated with this fine builder since 2004, I’m honored to be even informally included in their design, build and marketing plans. I’m sure I will be filling you in on their latest developments here on The Fog Warning.

Recently I was aboard Vicem’s latest splash, the V65 IPS. The sheer amount of interior volume and her grand sense of spaciousness surprised me. It may be the most I’ve seen in an express-style yacht. You can see a great video of her here:

https://youtu.be/BjvQqmE1eBg

Her full listing can be found below. I’ve been through her thoroughly, and have quite a lot to say. Feel free to call me if you are interested or have questions or comments.

https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2019/vicem-65-classic-ips-3187787/?refSource=standard%20listing

And from Istanbul, on to…

Antalya!

Antalya is in the south of Turkey, some 600 miles from Istanbul. It’s built around an ancient Roman harbor, and its one of the most romantic places I know. I very excited to be returning there. This particular trip began in Cannes.

Readers may remember my stories from last September, when I took a valuable and informative trip to Holland and Cannes to expand my knowledge of steel expedition yachts.

In Cannes, I ran into a Turkish company that somehow had previously escaped my notice. AvA Yachts is a former commercial builder that has transitioned seamlessly into a builder of fine yachts. Their Kando 110 is the flagship in their line, so far. Their design team introduced me to the knowledgeable Norwegian owner of Hull #1, and he graciously invited me to sea trial her when she splashed.

Then, just a few weeks after I returned to the States, , Kando announced the sale of Hull #2, to NBA star Tony Parker:

https://megayachtnews.com/2018/12/tony-parkers-superyacht-ava-yachts-kando-110/

Click for the full article…

I’m quite curious to see both the completed #1, and the early stages of Tony Parker’s build. Here’s a great introduction to what looks to me to be a great yacht:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gA00YAShLiM

In my meetings with the company’s founder, Atilla Kuckdiker, I was reminded of that uniquely Turkish approach to yacht building, a style I long ago labeled as:

“You draw it on a napkin, and we will build it!”

So I decided to challenge them with a napkin of my own…

A mariner I’ve know for a long time, who’s nautical judgement I’ve come to trust and depend on, brought to my attention a unique megayacht design. The Ocean Alexander 112 features an especially large master cabin in her bow. This is achieved largely by means of a “duplex-style” arrangement that puts the master head one level down, with a full size jacuzzi.

I just love this innovative use of space. I asked the design team at Kando if they could do the same. In less than a week they send me their interpretation, which I find outstanding:

That is high-level yacht building, Turkish-style. And, ladies and gentlemen, that’s exactly what keeps me coming back for more!

So off I go, friends and neighbors. But as you all know, I have little life beyond my boats and my clients. So please feel free to call or write about any little thing.

Thanks for listening, and enjoy!

Big Wave Dave

 

Flash Alert: Price Reduction

Mahogany Rose, the esteemed Vicem 67 Flybridge currently in Charleston, has undergone a $350,000 price reduction, to $1,050,000. She is scheduled for a new paint job and re-covered exterior cushions, presenting an opportunity for a timely buyer to pick their own color scheme.

 

Galley Island

Pivoting TV

High Gloss Varnish

Bunk room

Upper Deck

The full listing can be seen here:

Mahogany Rose Yachtworld Listing

This is one of my patented “You snooze, you lose” deals. Please call me for the full story….

Big Wave Dave

Not supposed to notice…

I. What you’re not supposed to notice…

To all whom I was lucky enough to catch up with at the Fort Lauderdale Show, thanks for your time! I can say with complete authority that no one who boarded our Zeelander 55 left unimpressed. And my clients, I am very proud to say,  are very hard to impress!

Seeing my yacht through your eyes is the most valuable education I could ask for. On the VIP day of the show, an experienced yachtsman I had met for the first time spent quite awhile going through her, as you can on VIP days. When he was done, he sat in the cockpit for a long time, drinking her in, before saying:

“I get it. She speaks to me.” 

That she did. That’s what happens when the right designer meets the right builder, and the magic begins.

The FLIBS show was perhaps my 150th over the last twenty years. I would guess I have shown my yachts to way more than 100,000 people in that time. And what these relationships have taught me is that with the finest of yachts – those created by that special magic – the first appeal is not what we we consciously see. It’s about what we feel.  Feelings like this couple evidenced in their spontaneous “flash-tango” on the Z55’s beautiful, immense swim platform:

 

That platform, by the way, operates my means of a cockpit switch mounted in the aft docking station”

 

 

As well as a handheld remote and a hidden emergency switch along the waterline reachable by a swimmer in case … well, you know.

The operation of the platform is a thing of beauty:

I’m sure you noticed at the beginning of that clip the port-side tender garage. It houses a Williams Jet Tender. It’s operation is shown here in this real-time video:

The Z55 was an eye-opener at the show. I have previously posted here a bunch of exterior photos and videos, but I now have some stupendous interior and cockpit shots:

The Master Cabin, with a TV lift in the makeup desk.

Mirror facing outward, TV facing the bed.

Stunning tile work in the master head.

VIP Cabin, forward.

Stunning woodwork, the equal of any I’ve seen coming out of Istanbul.

The Bar and TV area.

The TV, after dropping from the ceiling, of course rotates for viewing from the salon as well.

Salon table, with rotating captain’s chris for wrap-around eating for an honest eight guests.

The Salon table in its convertible bed position. Electrically operated, of course.

The cockpit table drops in the same way, making a huge sun bed:

And, ingeniously, the table also tips up 90 degrees, allowing a complete athwartship walkway, with cockpit entries to port and starboard!

 

I asked that yachtsman what our Zeelander whispered to him.  He said:

“She just …. flows.”

Flows! I was thrilled to hear that word. Because that ideal was determined up front by Zeelander. Their designers and builders challenged themselves to build a yacht with as few straight lines as possible. In the end she’s all about the curves, and they certainly do flow.  Take a moment and revisit the pix above, and this one below, and I think you’ll get my meaning. Flow is not something you expressly see. It’s not about noticing design and engineering choices. It’s something you feel. And when you do, it makes your day! And mine….

If you could not make it down to FLIBS, our Z55 is berthed in Fort Lauderdale for the next few months. She is fully available for your own special VIP viewing. Just launch a flare…

II. And Her Little Sisters

These intoxicating curves are no less evident with the “little” yachts that launched the Zeelander line: The Zeelander 44H. You will find her in motion here, and if you can find more than a handful of  straight lines, you win!

I can now announce two dramatic price reductions on two “leftover” Z44’s.  The first is a stunning 2014 model with a metallic Black Sable hull:

 

 

 

And the second is a Bentley Blue 2012 Dealer Demo at almost 40% off a new build price:

 

 

 

These two wonderful pocket yachts, currently at the factory in Holland, now need to go away. Quality trades will be considered. You can see their complete specifications on my Yachtworld listings, here:

Zeelander 44 #028 – Call for Price

Zeelander 44 #016- $795,000

By all means, call me for their stories in full. One of these belongs on your dock, and  if they won’t get you to Europe, nothing will.

III. The Holland Tour

I’ve been displaying, to no small notice, some wonderful photos of the Hartman Yachts Livingstone 24M on her Scandinavian cruise, Now, some from the Holland part of her shakedown:

 

So what then, you might ask, are we not supposed to notice about the Livingstone 24?

That’s easy – her rugged construction. It’s completely untrue, for those in the know,  to say that the blood and guts of yacht building in steel and aluminum is best left unexamined, like that old joke about the sausage factory. There is real beauty in strength, if you finish the job right! For an explorer yacht like the Livingstone 24, it’s about becoming the beast and the beauty, in that order.

You can build a myriad of rugged boats out of steel, from barges to aircraft carriers. But building them with consummate style and grace means enveloping their ruggedness with real polish and panache. That’s where the magic happens.  So here’s a glimpse of what you are not supposed to notice, in chronological order:

Tough enough for the Norwegian fjords.

 

Steel plating done.

The aluminum pilothouse.

Pilothouse attached. A welding job not for amateurs!

Finis!

Splash time.

Where it all comes together…

This wonderful go-anywhere classic is berthed about an hour outside of Amsterdam. She’s a full season yacht, of course. I’ll be in Holland on a monthly basis all winter, so please allow me to take you on your sea trial of this beastly beauty.

IV. And then there’s those tough conditions…

My final “not supposed to notice” for the week is about when fine yachts get tested in  harsh, real world conditions.  Because when the going gets tough, a great yacht delivers a ride capable enough that your family  don’t quite notice that tough sea-state.

The best example of this is The Baron, my Vicem 72 listing, effortless making her way through some serious weather at 28 knots, with nary a complaint:

She is in Miami, and can (make that should) be seen at any time.

VI. And finally…

Something I do want you to notice, loyal readers. I’d like to introduce you to my new hire. Now serving as The Fog Warning’s “Good Will Ambassador,” I am pleased to present Trout, my new Australian Shepherd puppy:

 

 

Her first performance review was OUTSTANDING! I will keep you posted as she chews through my life.

As always, thanks for rolling with me!

Big Wave Dave (and Trout)

 

If it ain’t Dutch, it ain’t much!

I’ve been traveling the breadth of Holland for most of September.  Having bounced around between Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and that booming metropolis of Urk (no, that’s not a typo) for weeks on end,  I return with fascinating tales and stunning boats for you. So grab a Heineken or two and settle down for the story.

I was invited to the Netherlands by a consortium of Dutch builders eager to establish (or improve) their beachheads on our side of the pond. I got up close and personal looks at over two hundred new yachts, and met with over a dozen builders.

I found there’s a lot of truth behind the old “If it ain’t Dutch…” joke. The Dutch truly have a unique relationship with the sea. The hard fact is that most of their country is below sea level, so they don’t have much choice!  Crawling through their yachts, I found some of the best engineering on the planet. I feel very strongly that we need this level of engineering in our harbors, too. Which is why I am so thrilled to now be representing three of Holland’s premier yacht builders in America!

I. First, Zeelander Yachts

Zeelander has been selling their fine yachts (including the hot one cruising through that cup of  coffee, above) in the USA since 2010. Their Z44 and Z55 models are well established on both coasts. I think you’ll understand why this year their best seller is their Z55:

 

 

 

 

 

 

As stunning as they are to the eye, what’s going on behind the scenes – from their hull design and uncompromising standards of soundproofing to their impressively laid out systems – is even more impressive. You can see what I mean by meeting me aboard their latest Z55 (a triple IPS 45 knot boat!) at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show (from October 31st  through November 4th).  I know my clients and loyal readers. So I know you will love this boat.

Be forewarned that I’ll be divulging some Zeelander secrets at the show. You can hear some advance news about Zeelander’s new Corniche 55:

and their under-construction  Zeelander 72:

And if that is not enough, I will have details on what to me is a pinnacle of avant-garde engineering: Their stunning Hybrid Drive, Rina-Green Class Plus Zeelander 164:

The artist renditions of three alternatives for its interior design will grab your attention. I am certain of it.

But to tide you over until your FLIBS vacation, here’s a cool little advance holiday for you:

II. Hartman Yachts

These are the boats that brought me to Holland this fall! It all started with a review of their Livingstone 24  in the latest issue of Passagemaker Magazine. Her classic jazz-age styling made me reach for my passport:

This 24 meter shares her lines with two larger siblings, the 34M and the 42M. Viewed as a complete series, these sketches provide the best view of Hartman’s deep dive  into classic yachts:

The Livingstone 24

 

The Livingstone 34

The Livingstone 42

I’ll be writing about this fine yacht quite a bit in the months to come, but if you can’t wait, here’s the review that sent me to Urk:

 

I’d be remiss here in not mentioning Hartman’s Explorer line, the Amundsen Series. Designed to go anywhere at almost any time, their design and overbuilt scantlings come directly from Hartman’s experience in building ocean-tested commercial freighters – boats that routinely go from Holland to the Falkland Islands, regardless of weather. Their intelligent and redundant systems will identify their 26M, 35M, and 42M yachts as true Explorer-class yachts:

Amundsen 26

 

Amundsen 34

Amundsen 42

III. Long Island Yachts

I must say, this was the big surprise of my trip to Holland:

I had not heard of Long Island Yachts, despite their oh-so-American name (they’re actually named after a very special place in the Bahamas). I was surprised (and then excited) to learn that over eighty  have sold in Holland. I find the Dutch to be a very friendly, but rather grounded people. It takes a lot to get them excited. Well, clearly these Long Island Yacht builds turn them on!

 

I firmly believe these little pocket yachts are poised to make a big splash in our harbors. Why?

  • Their designs are spot on.
  • Their build-quality is as close to flawless as I’ve seen on small yachts.
  • Their pricing is quite advantageous.

But hey, don’t just listen to me! Come see for yourself, as I’ll have a beautiful red one for you to board at the Fort Lauderdale Show. Please call me for the details.

IV. Oh Wait….

One last thing about the Fort Lauderdale Show – The Baron, my Vicem 72 brokerage listing, will be open for private viewings in nearby Miami. I will be making scheduled trips  during the show, so please call now for an appointment. For a more public viewing, here ya go:

V. Things I hate!

Welcome to a new regular feature of The Fog Warning – Things I love, and Things I Hate. This week, it’s all about the hate!

I’m often asked where the name “Big Wave Dave”  comes from. I rarely tell the story. It’s too embarrassing for a marine professional (sic) to admit.  But as The Fog Warning’s reach has expanded (with 10,000 new readers this year alone) I recognize that a good part of this growth is the boating public’s hunger for better coverage of “real world” safety issues. So in the interest of the greater good, I will overcome my embarrassments for you, my loyal readers. You owe me one.

First, some video’s that explore that brave and dangerous activity of boarding moving vessels. (Warning, don’t try this at home).

The first is about mail deliveries on the Great Lakes. In some communities mail gets delivered right to your dock. And, as you’ll see,  that mailboat don’t dawdle!

Mailboat jumper tryouts

The "mailboat jumpers" are part of a time-honored tradition that helps put Lake Geneva on the map. FOX6 News was there on Tuesday for tryouts for the 2018 season — and not everyone stayed dry! via.fox6now.com/a1U5Q

Posted by FOX6 News Milwaukee on Tuesday, June 12, 2018

 

And then there is this boarding exercise,  from Finland. How else would your pilot board from an ice flow? And do they pay these people enough?

 

Finally, my points are made by this hair-raising tale (it ends well):

Personally, these videos instill in me an attitude of gratitude (as new-age meditators put it). Gratitude  for the fact that the universe, in its infinite wisdom, provided for the evolution of bow rails!

After all, these too-often overlooked options keep you and yours where you’re supposed to be.

Of course many downeast-style yachts dispense with these rails altogether. Far and away the majority of Hinkley’s don’t have them. In fact, these yachts are beautiful in part because there are no stainless rails breaking up their sweeping lines. Here’s a good example of that (and bonus points if you catch the captain almost falling overboard seven seconds in):

The bow rail discussion (do I or don’t I?) is a little bit like the flybridge discussion (Do I shoot for the panoramic visibility and extra outdoor space that a flybridge offers, or the pure beauty of an express model?).  A little tangent here folks….

I was speaking with a client just last week about his dilemma. His point, and of course we all get it, is that life is too short to have a less-than-beautiful boat. And whatever visibility, functionality and outdoor space a flybridge adds, it hurts to sacrifice one’s sense of style. On the flip side, when you’re running your boat, why care what she looks like to the crowds?

There’s no right answer here, of course. But I will say that one of the things that  completely won me over to Zeelander is how beautifully they balance interior and exterior space, without sacrificing visibility.

First, the designers at Zeelander went pedal-to-the-metal in providing full panoramic view from the helm of their 55. You can see it best clicking on this virtual tour:

 

I’ve never run an express-style yacht with this kind of 360 degree visibility. From a safety perspective, I cannot say enough about it.

And then, in terms of the indoor/outdoor space issue, the Z55 is the only express-style yacht I know that offers a quantum of outdoor space comparable to a flybridge. Check out these plans:

 

With her transom hydraulically opened, her beach-sized platform spread out just above the water, her bar area windows retracted and her sunroof open, the Zeelander 55 offers four outdoor areas for you and your guests, without sacrificing any room down below. I have never seen this on an express-style yacht. Come see me at the Fort Lauderdale show and I’m happy to demonstrate at length.

Well, now back to bow rails. In my ten years with Vicem, and some $40m in boats later,  I never did a custom build without bow rails. The conversation came up quite a bit, of course. Most commonly I heard “Hinckley’s don’t got ’em, why should mine?”  But in the end, safety won out repeatedly, and every one of my clients opted to spend the $14,000+ to add bow rails. Rails, I might add, high enough to do their job. Too many rails end just above knee height, as seen here….

…putting them at the perfect fulcrum point to toss you overboard.

Let me repeat that: ….putting them at the perfect fulcrum point to……

Ten years ago I was working a 50′ yacht at a CT boat show. Her bow rails were knee-high.  A client happened to call me for some advice, so for some privacy I worked my way up to the bow, thereby becoming the object of an old industry joke:

Q: How can you tell who’s a yacht broker at a boat show?

A: He/She is  the one on their phone with their back to the crowd.

Guilty as charged.

We talked for awhile,  my phone tucked in one ear as I took some notes in my ever-present notebook. These days I use this one, and if you’d like one for note taking at the fall shows, just launch a flare and I’d be happy to send you one:

All was fine until I dropped the pen. Leaning forward, braced against the (low) rail, a gentle wave from a passing wake rocked my boat slightly. Much quicker than I can write, I instantly went from six feet above the water to five feet under, hitting the dock with my shoulder as I passed it by. Instantly, as in:

Underwater, I was immediately aware of two things:

  • Which way was up (duh, the sunlight);  and,
  • That my arm hurt like hell.

I popped up, and looked aft to the crowds on the dock. No one saw me go over, and with my head just below dock level I was pretty much invisible. I couldn’t wave (I needed my other arm to stay afloat) but I could inch my way down the dock with my one good arm. I made my way up the ladder on the boat’s swim platform.

I was reasonably sure my arm was broken, but X-rays at the ER showed it was just a bad bone bruise. Three days later I was on a plane to Istanbul to splash a new Vicem 67 Flybridge.

So yes, I’m the only one in my industry who can say I fell overboard at a boat show. My colleagues awarded me a prize – an antique kapok-style  life jacket, labelled Big Wave Dave.

I have yet to escape that name. I don’t suppose I should.

What are the lessons of this embarassing tale? I will leave you with just one, plus a classic video clip to drive the point home: Bow rails are a personal decision. There are things to be said for high, none, or very low rails. But I’ll quote Archimedes here, who said this about fine yachts with knee-high bow rails:

“Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.”

Yes, I hate ’em.  And so should you. And please remember this:

Ciao for now, loyal readers. I’ll see you at FLIBS!

[You now know the saga of] Big Wave Dave

 

You Snooze, You Lose (again)!

I. More Mayday

My last posting, Mayday – A Cautionary Tale, was the most widely read (and shared) post in the ten years I’ve been doing this. I am thrilled to report that readership of The Fog Warning has now climbed past 10,000 readers. For what this can mean to you and your yachts, please see below.  But for a refresher, here’s the original posting:

II. You Snooze, You Lose…

Go ahead, punch The Fog Warning sales button:

 

Truant, my Vicem 70 listing (and one of my most-inquired about yachts) is now under contract! Her new owner has owned some truly remarkable yachts (including the most stunning Lyman Morse ever) and knew exactly what he was looking for. His successful search says a tremendous amount about his taste and values, about the enduring brilliance of Vicem yachts, and the “blank check” stewardship of her seller.

But fear not, fellow yachtsmen! I present you with other compelling choices. I have spent the last few weeks moving up and down the east coast showing these fine offerings (click on the vessel name for the full listing):

The Baron, my Vicem 72 listing in Miami:

The Baron

Mahogany Rose, my Vicem 67 listing in Charleston:

 

Mahogany Rose

Essence, my Vicem 85 listing in Palm Beach:

 

Essence

And, the superb custom Viking 82 Skylounge  – Untethered: 

Untethered

If you are looking for a fine yacht for this season, now is your time. Anyone who worked the Palm Beach Boat Show last month would tell you that quality yachts are trading hands right now. Sales velocity has picked up, and inventory is dropping.

I looked at the data last night, and found that older listings are [finally] finding new owners. Stated another way, older listings have really been the norm for the last few years, but they are now attriting out.

Almost 400 powerboats in the 65 to 85 foot range sold in the US over the last twelve months. I did the (very tedious) math very carefully and found the average time-to-sale was 13 months.

By price, it breaks down like this:

Under $1,000,000 11 months
$2,000,000 to $3,000,000 13 months
$2,000,000 to $3,000,000 12 months
$3,000,000 to $4,000,000 10 months
Over $4,000,000 13 months

But note that these numbers mostly relate to production boats. Classic, custom and otherwise unique yachts are averaging 28 months. Large sailboats? An incredible 31 months.

III. All about the Velocity

It doesn’t have to take this long to find or sell the right yacht. I’ve both broadened and sharpened The Fog Warning’s approach to help you add velocity to your deals.

  • If you are looking to buy, and feel Baron, Mahogany Rose,  Essence or Untethered could shake up your life I suspect you may soon miss out. All have had showings in the last few weeks. If you don’t want to be on the wrong side of one of my snoozeagrams, launch a flare today.
  • If you are shopping more broadly than these offerings, please consider letting me help you find your next yacht, no matter where she swims.  I am currently helping one client find his ideal Fleming, and another find her ideal Marlow. With all significant projects, I can now provide a signifiant “real dollar” cost savings. Please call for details.
  • If you are considering selling your current yacht, let me put the full power and reach of The Fog Warning behind you. As mentioned above, we are now at over 10,000 readers. And all indications are that they are exactly the right kind of readers.  What’s more, Constant Contact, the email system that regularly connects you to The Fog Warning, just awarded me its 2017 All-Star award:All Star Award 2016 WinnerThe reason? 94% of my recipients choose to click and read every Fog Warning posting. I am honored by your allegiance. Clearly you value what I deliver. Which is why I am investing considerable time, effort and money on moving The Fog Warning to an exciting and more powerful platform – a [free] Interactive Digital Magazine, with app versions for all devices. My goal is to add even greater reach and value for you, my loyal clients, finding or selling your yachts more quickly. I aim to put The Fog Warning’s award winning content in front of as many qualified boat shoppers as possible. Simply stated:

Let me put your yacht in front of their eyes! 

  • Even if your special yacht is currently listed with another broker, The Fog Warning can add velocity to that listing at no additional cost to you. Just launch a flare to hear the benefits to you of this groundbreaking initiative. At the very least, I promise you an eye-opening conversation about the state of marketing in our industry.

In short, loyal readers, let’s push The Fog Warning button together and sell or buy your fine yacht:

 

IV. Your Mayday Comments

Yes, my cautionary tale is the most read (and most widely shared) posting ever. To all who took the time to pass on their “glad you survived” comments, my profound thanks. And, I’ll add this thought: ME TOO!

I found the substantive comments of great value, and I believe you will too. Here are a few, along with my answers:

  • Wow, Dave. An incredible story. Thanks for sharing. I’ll admit I always considered myself a “safe” captain. Always had more than the required number of flares, pfds, etc. and close at hand. When you said “I always wear my mini-ditch kit” my first reaction was that it sounded like overkill. I was shocked, however, by how quickly the smoke overtook you.

Well, no one was more surprised than me. One reason is that the boat had an enclosed helm. There was no helm-side door, and the windows were fixed. The aft end was mostly enclosed by eisenglass. There was no simply no place for the smoke to go (except my lungs).

  • Dave, I’m curious about the salvage team that tried to intercept your tow. I’ve had some experiences with those pirates. Or are they vultures? Looking forward to your coverage on the applicable laws and practices.

Stand by for that, Batman. The deeper I dig into this, the more fascinating the details.

  •  I think being alone on that delivery may have been a huge advantage for you. You only had to worry about yourself and the vessel. There were no children, inexperienced passengers, non-swimmers and such to distract you. They would very likely interfered with your the mission critical tasks.

Well said, and this hadn’t occurred to me. It argues toward a forceful approach with guests. When it comes to guests at sea, maybe there is a time and place for volume and authority?

  • It sounds to me that even if you had a life raft, you wouldn’t have had time to deploy it.

True, that. And hydrostatic releases for rafts are irrelevant to fire situations.

  • Dave, you said a few times that you wasted precious seconds. What would you have done if you hadn’t? 

Great question! The answer is something that never occurred to me in the heat (sic) of battle. There was a hatch right over my head. I never thought to open it. Duh! Smoke would have cleared more quickly, allowing me to both see and think more clearly.

V. Blank Check

I mentioned at the top of this posting that Truant’s quick sale proved the value of an uncompromising maintenance schedule. Recently I had the opportunity to review over 200 pages of maintenance records for one of my listings. They representing six years of “blank check” ownership, and it was a little like reading a great autobiography!

I invested the time in putting together a spreadsheet of it all, hoping for a “big picture” view of how maintenance dollars are spent.

She is a New England boat, stored indoors in a heated shed each winter. Here’s how her expenses break down:

 

I was surprised about how significant commissioning/decommissioning expenses can be. So I backed them out, presenting a picture of a southern boat, or perhaps a north/south boat:

One interesting dynamic that jumps out at me is upgrade costs. Almost by definition, upgrades are optional. But they do make a brokerage yacht stand out among the competition. I’m looking now at how upgrade projects pay for themselves, and/or affect sales velocity, at final sale. As usual, I look forward to your comments on this, that, and anything else.

Ciao for now, loyal readers. I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I did writing it.

Enjoy!

Big Wave Dave

 

No Room at the Inn!

I. No Room at the Inn

For some of us it may be true that our first boat show is as memorable as our first kiss. In my case, they were both in the same year!  The boat show was at the old New York Coliseum, on Columbus Circle. Finding this New York Times article today, I was struck by the dates pictured on the Coliseum marquis. I’m certain I was there on the last day, as it was my fourteenth birthday! I must’ve been one of the smiling people mentioned in this headline, because that show set me on the course I travel with you all today. Boats make me happy. Always did, always will. You too, I am sure.

Here’s another  iconic New York Boat Show pic, from 1961. Looks like 42nd street to me:

To be charitable, the Coliseum was never the most attractive building in NY. Back in the day some called it “The ugliest building Robert Moses ever built.”

 

Architects and civic planners celebrated when it was razed to make room for the much more impressive Time Warner Center (Home of Club Dizzy’s at Jazz at Lincoln Center, where you can often find me on a Friday night).

Why all this history? What is the method to my madness? Well,  it’s all about that particular era in boating. You may recall that back in the 70’s recreational boats were designed and marketed around one simple measurement – and it wasn’t price or speed. The question was:

How many berths can we squeeze in?

It wasn’t uncommon to find a 32’ boat (sizeable, back then) with seven berths. No one ever filled them, of course. But manufacturers felt compelled to engage in this “berth arms race,” completing like crazy over a nonsensical number, and damn the torpedoes!

I’m glad we now boat in more rational times.  Because, really now, how many people do you want to cruise with? As Ben Franklin famously observed:

Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.”

Fortunately, with our functioning pressure hot water systems, this is no longer true. But there is a limit to how many people we want to travel with. Which is why designers now put their energies into creating beautiful and functional communal spaces, like galleys, dining areas, and salons. They understand that with guests, sometimes less is more. Of course, you can be lucky enough to own a six-cabin boat, and then simply choose not to fill them up.  But it’s always easier to tell your in-laws the simple truth: “Sorry, no room at the inn.”

My current listings, from 67 to 85 feet, all take the same approach – even the 82 and the 85 are three-cabin boats (plus crew quarters).  I’ve helped design and sell some four and five-cabin boats, but I suspect the last cabin or two is rarely used.

Better to be creative in how you cruise. When you’ve docked your three-cabin in Abaco, for example, in a crunch you can always fly in guests, put the kids in the crew cabin (oh, how kids love crew cabins)…

Crew Cabin – Vicem 72 Baron

….and stash your Captain in a local hotel for a few days. Trust me, three is the perfect number. Here, from the perspective of my listings, is why:

First, for your viewing pleasure, I present Mahogany Rose, my 2007 Vicem 67:

She has your basic three-cabin plus crew layout, but with a twist: The mid-ship cabin easily converts from sleeping cabin to full-sized working office, and back again.

This way the owner (um, that would be you…)  has a choice of master cabin’s to sleep in, either in the bow –

 

  – or mid-ship if the office isn’t needed. Between the two, as much as anything the choice comes to down to peace and quiet.  More specifically, when you want your piece and quiet.

If you’re tied up at a slip, and sleeping in the bow, you’re a long way away from your guests or crew when they’re stumbling through breakfast prep. It’s just much easier to sleep in. That said, considerations change when you’re on the hook in a roily anchorage. Once the harbor wakes up and boats get moving,  you will hear hull slap as your neighbors go by.

On the hook or in the slip, you won’t have any doubt when you hear your bow thruster engage. A client put it quite well to me last week when he said it sounds like “a ton of marbles in a blender” (although that under-berth enclosure can be easily soundproofed. I don’t know why more people don’t do it).

My conclusion here? As in all things in life, it’s nice to have choices. Move to the quieter space as circumstances and guests dictate.

In all of my flybridge listings, whether bow or mid-ship master, you’ll find Vicem’s infamous four-cabin bunk room. Perfect for kids and young adults:

Mahogany Rose Bunk Room

Look closely at above pic, and you’ll see that the upper bunks fold up, to create a roomy two-person cabin. Mahogany Rose is in Charleston, just waiting for you….

For a different approach to accommodations, check out Truant, my 2007 Vicem 70:

Truant, Vicem 70

She, too is an intelligently designed three-cabin boat, plus crew under the cockpit. And like the V67, she has a bunkroom for four. But Truant has, by far, the largest bunkroom in her class, with extra floorspace for dressing comfortably. And each of those four bunks has its own TV, and its own Direct TV receiver and headset. There are no entertainment arguments on Truant, ever.

Truant Bunk Room

Truant’s master cabin, by the way, is in the bow, with a stunning dressing area. Note how her high-gloss varnish work just pops!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now Baron, my 2007 Vicem 72, is a three-cabin yacht with by far the largest owner’s cabin in her class. Her mid-ship master is apartment-sized, with closets to match. The best view of her is at 2:01 in this amazing video:

Even this video doesn’t quite capture the the size and elegance of her master cabin. Come to Miami and see with your own eyes how her uniquely accented blue LED lighting glows, and take in the view through her in-hull windows. If you are coming to the Palm Beach Show, it’s not hard to run over and take a look.

Untethered, my Viking 82 Enclosed Skylounge, is in a class of her own:

All other Viking 82’s are four-cabin models. As such, they all have a long narrow corridor leading to the bow, with cabins branching off to each side. When all cabin doors are closed, things can get a little …. claustrophobic. But Untethered was expressly conceived as a three-cabin yacht, with a huge master aft of the bow crew quarters:

 

This is a boat where space and privacy rule.  I’d be happy to show her to you in Fort Lauderdale at any time. (including during the Palm Beach show).

Lastly, the queen of my fleet is Essence, that wonderful 2007 Vicem 85:

Essence is the largest express downeast-style boat on the planet (So far, anyway. More on that below). Like Untethered, her owner designed her up front to be first and foremost an owner’s boat. His three-cabin layout supports that decision intelligently. Her crew cabin occupies the entire bow area, providing maximal privacy, while her mid-ship master defines elegance as few boats can:

Master Cabin, Essence – Vicem 85

 

I expect you‘ve discerned my preference – When it comes to cabins, after a certain point less is more. And I think Ben Franklin would have agreed with me.

II. On to Italy…

So, Essence is the largest downeast style express boat ever built. But apparently not for long!  I have been in discussions with with a yard in Italy for a client interested in this [four-cabin!] 105’ Belleza Express. Yes, that’s 32 meters. Isn’t she spectacular?

 

 

 

 

 

She has an eighteen month build time, which is remarkable for a yacht this size (although not for steel boats). I have all the details on performance and pricing, so if she interests you, just pull out that trusty flare gun of yours and launch away. Or even better, come to Genoa with me in March and meet the principals. Her pricing is attractive, and full customization is possible.

I never thought anything could eclipse Essence, but I’ve learned to never say never. Come to think of it, isn’t “Eclipse” a great name for a yacht?

III. On to Haiti…

Long time readers will remember my thrills and chills helping to build a school for 400 kids in a “you-can’t-get-there” part of Haiti. A couple of clients have asked recently  about it, so I’ll provide an update, along with a request for some help for some wonderful children.

It took there years and almost $175,000, but we got our school built and operating. What once looked like this:

Has become this, the flagship of schools in the hills of eastern Haiti:

 

It is a beautiful and humbling thing, but….

The original Bodarie School had a short teaching day – classes ended at 1pm. Not because we couldn’t afford the teachers. It’s just that we couldn’t afford a lunch program, and the kids had to go home to eat.  That changed after the Goudou-goudou, the awful earthquake in 2010 (Goudou-goudou is an approximation of the terrible grinding sound Haitians heard during the quake).

In a stroke of good luck, after the earthquake we were able to get a grant from UN reconstruction authorities. The deal was that if we could build a kitchen, they would provide food for our kids. Of course we raced to build that kitchen, and the school day was extended to 3pm. The kids were thrilled, as you can see here as they eagerly  await a rice delivery:

Unfortunately that food grant has now ended, and we had to end the food program. School ends at 1pm again, and the quality of education has of course been impacted.

My friends on the ground in Bodarie tell me that they need $35,000 annually to feed these kids. My friends and clients had a very significant role in getting this school built, and I humbly turn to you again.

We have a dedicated funding stream that largely covers all day-to-day educational costs. But this food enhancement  is just sitting there, waiting for generous souls like my loyal readers to chime in. Please let me know if you can help, and I promise to steward your contribution with the utmost care. An overview of the school’s mission and purpose can be found here:

And the reasons why are right here:

Feed these kids!

Thank you, one and all, for tuning in once again to my ramblings.

Spring is coming. I guarantee it!

Big Wave Dave

 

Drones and Bones….

I. Cats, lots of Cats

I’ve been on the road for much of the last six weeks, and I expect you’ll find the story interesting. The reason: One third of the charter catamarans in the Caribbean were destroyed by Hurricane Irma. That was over 350 cats!

 

Tornado’s spun off near the eye of the Hurricane reached an unimaginable 256 MPH, enough to lift a 65’ power cat off the water, flip it over, and deposit it onshore:

 

No one ever thought that was possible. All in all, it is an extremely humbling exposure to nature’s forces.

For the charter biz, rebuilding is a major challenge. Existing multihull factories in South Africa, France and elsewhere in Europe are running at maximum capacity to try and replace these boats, but they don’t have the facilities and staff to keep up. Under current conditions, it will take no less than three years to restore these fleets. So I’ve been flying about, connecting existing builders and charter boat companies with under-utilized factories in China and Turkey that can take up the slack.

The surprising news is that a big percentage of the re-build will not be sailing cats. Power cats are the future of the Caribbean charter trade. Over the last five years, more and more power cats have entered service. Vacationers increasingly find them ideal for their intended uses. The hurricane has greatly accelerated this trend, and in five years the best guess is that power cats will approach 50% of the entire fleet.

So, as you might imagine, I’ve been learning a lot about these felines. They are fascinating creatures, from design and engineering perspectives.  Of course, for fans of The Fog Warning and the yachts I cover, most will find them rather unattractive. To be fair to their designers and builders, it’s not for lack of trying. It’s just that very hard to build a high-volume power cat that has sufficient bridge deck clearance (measured from under the main salon sole down to the waterline) to prevent pounding and slamming, yet avoid appearing tall and boxy. Here’s some examples of the latter:

 

In time, if the market demands it, designers will come up with sexier approaches. My own highly subjective take on this is that one builder has already accomplished this, with what I see as a downeast style 47′ yacht (!) made by Maine Cat:

On the other hand, what do I know? Less than the marketplace, apparently, as only four of these have sold. I’m very curious what my readers think. This one is on the market, in Fort Lauderdale, for $579k. I haven’t sea trialed her yet, but if you’d like to see her, I’d love to show her to you. Just launch a flare.

II. V is for Visibilty

Long time readers know that one of my big answers to the question WMABGAW (What makes a boat great, and why), is visibility. Simply stated, can you see what you need to see, to operate safely in all conditions?   Providing that kind of visibility requires intelligently designed trim angle (both when coming up on plane, and staying there), ergonomic helm placement, and a proper salon layout. You can read one of my earlier discussion about trim angle if you scroll through the Reliant Yachts category, and you’ll find more related content under my Vicem blog.

What I’ve seen on my expeditions is that on the whole, power cats don’t do visibility well. The boats are so wide (with a beam equal to 50% of length, and even more) that flybridge helms (and even most interior helms) are blind to the boat/dock connect point.That’s asking for trouble, in my book. The Maine Cat solves this problem with a cockpit docking station:

 

 

They are not cheap to engineer and build, but I urge anyone considering a power cat to demand one. Your dock, your neighbors, and your insurance company will all thank you!

As for a bit more on trim angles, take a look at this new and additional (exterior views only) drone footage I just got on Baron, my Vicem 72 listing. It shows, IMHO, how all boats should come up on plane. Most don’t. You’ll see how the entire hull just rises up on the same plane. There is none of this pitched bow/squatting stern/strain-to-come-out-of the-hole kind of operation. In a quiet and fuel efficient way, she just elevates and goes. The bow never obstructs your vision, allowing nearby boats, kayaks and jet skis to all live in peace and joy.

Pretty cool, hug? I find it interesting how drones have fundamentally changed marine photography. Back in the day, around 2007 or so, I had to arrange a bunch of helicopter bookings to get these sort of views. They cost upwards of $10,000 each, and the truth is I never felt fully safe doing them. At one point, running a Vicem 67 from the flybridge, the helicopters’s blades were spinning below me, less than boat length away. I was …. uneasy. But the shots are great, and you can read that review, and see those pix, here:

 

https://www.powerandmotoryacht.com/boat-tests/vicem-67-flybridge

Of course, this brings me to Mahogany Rose, the sistership to the Vicem 67 in that review. She is in Charleston, awaiting your viewing. Call me, baby….

http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2007/Vicem-Flybridge-3061371/Charleston/SC/United-States?refSource=standard%20listing#.WoH6rmbMydE

 

III. The Mercy

I’m very excited about the coming release of  The Mercy, a film about Donald Crowhurst’s sad 1968 attempt to win the first single-handed race around the world. As most of you already know, he competed in a badly designed and built trimaran called the Teignmouth Electron. When it began to break up off the coast of Brazil, he decided to drift around the South Atlantic for six months, radioing false reports back to race organizers that showed him in the lead.

His plan was to jump back in the race as his competitors came back around the Cape, and to then claim the prize money as the first back to England.  In the end he couldn’t live with his deceptions, and he chose to simply walk off the back of his boat, leaving a widow and three small children. Today, reading the diaries he left behind,  we would recognize him as suffering from an untreated bi-polar condition. It is a sad story, certainly. But also an essentially human one. Here’s the trailer:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3319730/videoplayer/vi297383961?ref_=tt_ov_vi

I have been obsessed with this story since I followed that race as a ten year old sailor. Obsessed to the point that a few years ago, when I heard that the Teignmouth Electron had eventually washed up somewhere on Cayman Brac, I decided I had to see her with my own eyes. Using Google Earth, I was able to find what looked like a wrecked trimaran up in the dunes:

 

 

And off I went on my Crowhurst  pilgrimage. It wasn’t hard to find what was left of her after almost fifty years:

Original name in faded red paint.

 

I don’t know if she is still there, given the recent hurricanes. But if you would like to make a pilgrimage of your own, I’ll send you the old coordinates. The diving and bone fishing in Brac is extraordinary, by the way.

IV. A New Way

In my last posting on The Fog Warning I talked about how the average time to sell a yacht has reached 13 months, in an otherwise strong economy.  Something ain’t right. I’d like to talk about that a bit more here, starting with a story from Monaco.

I was working the Monaco Boat Show on September 15, 2008. You may remember that as the day Lehman Brothers collapsed. There was a hint of panic on the docks.  I remember seeing an agitated American on the docks, screaming into his cellphone “Treasuries, move everything into treasuries, right now!”

 That night I went out with a bunch of my fellow brokers for a gloomy night of drinking. One of them asked “How long do you think it will take the boat market to come back?”

The first answer to be heard was “Never.

The general consensus was three or four years.

My answer? “Ten years.”

Sometimes (not often enough) I’m right. Here’s a chart for you, showing that finally, after ten years, we have just returned to 2008 levels.

 

 

 

But why then is it taking longer than ever for brokerage boats to sell?

My answer is three fold:

  • Too much product;
  • Not enough differentiation among that product; and,
  • A lack of informed and well-communicated information about which of these yachts are the best value, and of the highest quality.

As you all know, The Fog Warning devotes itself to analyzing and delivering that kind of information. So if your yacht is currently for sale with another broker – a relationship you’d like to keep – I can add a strong Fog Warning boost to their efforts. And I can do so usually at no additional cost to you. If you are curious about the why and how, please contact me off line.

And the same applies if you are looking to buy a high-end brokerage yacht. I can help you find your yacht, saving you real net dollars in the process, again at no charge.

It’s a new way of doing business, coming at just the right time. If you’d like to ride that wave, just launch a flare.

As always, I look forward to hearing from you. And thanks for listening.

Big Wave Dave