The challenge with owning a big yacht is time. With today’s fast-paced, over-scheduled lifestyles, sailing off into the sunset for a week, or a month, is usually a nonstarter. Which is why luxury day sailers that are easy to handle, fun to sail and can have you out on the water in minutes are soaring in popularity. Here are seven of our very favorites.
La Dolce Vita
Conjure up the image of a waterborne Ferrari—all sleek, seductive style, lots of high-tech carbon fiber, exquisite leather and a half-million-dollar price tag. That’s the stunning Brenta B42 day sailer.
Created by longtime yachties Luca Brenta and Lorenzo Argento, co-founders of the Fano, Italy-based Luca Brenta Yacht Design, the B42 is one of a fleet of exquisite, custom-built day sailers, ranging from 30 to 60 feet.
The beauty of the 42 is its sheer simplicity. Designed to be piloted with ease by one person, all controls are by push button. Want to raise the big mainsail? Press a knob and an electric Harken winch unfurls it from the carbon fiber boom. Want to trim the self-tacking jib? Big, electrically powered hydraulic rams do the heavy moving, again, at the touch of a button.
Brenta’s objective with the 42 was simply to minimize the time it takes to go sailing, so an owner can use the boat without a big crew. Or any crew. It also makes it a joy to take out inexperienced family or friends who might be intimidated by a cockpit full of linguine-like lines.
As you’d expect, the B42 is a masterpiece of cool Italian design and the latest high-tech construction. The hull and mast are made of light yet super-strong carbon fiber; the keel is a narrow fin with a three-ton torpedo bulb at the base for speed and stability. Draft is 5 feet, 9 inches, making it perfect for shallow Florida waters.
Down below, there’s a double berth in the pointy end and two single settee berths, making it perfect for a weekend away for a family or two couples. And only an Italian boat would have twin hanging wardrobes made of leather.
- Length: 41’11”
- Beam: 10’2"
- Draft: 5’9”
- Displacement: 9,350 lbs.
- Sail area: 1,076 sq. ft.
- Power: 27-hp Volvo Saildrive
- Price: From $575,000 (Bruce Tait & Associates, Sag Harbor, New York; taityachts.com; b-yachts.com)
Bruckmann 42 Daysailer
Mississauga, Ontario, seems an unlikely location for arguably the Great White North’s leading boat builder, but it’s home to the skilled craftsmen of Bruckmann Yachts. One of their most coveted creations is this breathtaking 42-foot day sailer.
Founder Erich Bruckmann was one of the original partners at legendary C&C Yachts in the late 1960s, when the industry was just switching from wood to a new-fangled material called glass fiber. He set up Bruckmann Yachts in the late 1980s with son Mark, who now runs the show.
Their 42 was a latecomer to the day sailer market but made an impact by offering a classically styled, easy-sailing sloop with old-school long overhangs and a focus on quality and craftsmanship. The design came from the drawing board of Zurn Yacht Design in Marblehead, Massachusetts.
One of its big appeals is the full six feet of standing headroom in its well laid out cabin. So many rivals sacrifice space to preserve purity of line. Tell that to the guy who cracks his head on the ceiling! There’s room for four adults to snooze in comfort after a glorious afternoon sail, with a small, though well stocked, galley to rustle up dinner later on.
The emphasis here is on laid-back, no-surprises sailing, courtesy of its generous 8,000-pound keel—almost half the total weight of the yacht—and easy-to-handle rig. Its deep, protected cockpit adds to the feeling of security and safety, making it perfect when young sailors are aboard.
- Length: 42’4”
- Beam: 11’
- Draft: 4’9”
- Displacement: 17,500 lbs.
- Sail area: 898 sq. ft.
- Power: 30-hp Yanmar diesel with Saildrive
- Price: From $648,000 (bruckmannyachts.com)
More day sailers on page 2