By the time this column reaches you, I will be just back from several days on the serpentine docks of the massive Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. For recreational maritime editors, this event is the last stateside boat show of the year, with just a few months before January’s “how did they get these colossal yachts indoors?” boot Düsseldorf in Germany, hard by a very cold Rhine River.
Like farmers bringing their bounty to market, boatbuilders see late summer and early fall as a time of plenty. These builders are eager to share their latest launches with the public. Judging from what I have seen thus far—on the Côte d’Azur at the sprawling Cannes Yachting Festival, and at the more modest but mighty Newport International Boat Show—there are a lot of boats to be enthusiastic about.
One of these boats is our cover model, the Sirena 78 (see “Adventure Awaits,” page 42). This latest yacht from the Turkey-based builder, like other Sirenas, combines a beautiful, roomy interior within a dual-mode, efficient semidisplacement hull. I was along for the ride on a late-afternoon sea trial on the Bay of Cannes, and would have been thrilled if we had kept on cruising until we reached Corsica.
I also learned at the recent boat shows that sustainability is not just a buzzword. Many builders are looking toward greener ways of boating. Some are touting power trains that utilize diesel-electric setups or fuel cells for propulsion, while others are embracing solar power arrays and robust, lithium battery banks, which allow silent cruising and eschewing an onboard genset. Still others, such as Prestige (see “Boat Log,” page 22) and Bluegame, are building multihulls with commodious living space and a fuel consumption that is reportedly half of a similar-sized monohull.
In the next several issues, you will see the best of what is to come for the coastal and long-range cruising crowd. I look forward to bringing these vessels to you, even if it means 25,000 daily steps on a sweltering dock, and slipping my loafers on and off at boarding steps about a dozen times each afternoon.
This article was originally published in the November/December 2022 issue.