The notion that some yachts are simply too big to enjoy has prompted one very experienced captain to come up with something more manageable


The argument that some super-sailing yachts are just too big to enjoy is one I pick up on quite often. Managing a large crew and owning a yacht aboard which one feels virtually redundant due to the complexity of the sailing systems doesn’t always add up to much fun. Even the sensation of sailing can begin to be lost in some big yachts.

Seasoned yacht captain Malcolm Bromilow, who has run a number of yachts called Borkumriff – the current yacht Borkumriff 1V is a magnificent 156ft (47.6m) schooner – suggests that there is room for something at the 98ft (30m), 80-ton mark. I bumped into him at the Dusseldorf Boat Show and he handed me this picture and brief description of his idea.

“This concept has been born from numerous discussions with captains and some owners of large prestigious sailing yachts, where perhaps a need for a more manageable and personal size yacht could make more sense,” said Malcolm.

His experience with Borkumriff and now Meteor, a similar design in build at Royal Huisman, suggests that the hull shape – a long straight keel – and the schooner rig are an ideal combination. The hull is easily driven and comfortable in a seaway and the rig is versatile with relatively small individual sails, plenty of area for offwind blasts and a tidy, efficient rig for upwind slogs.

“The schooner rig is not just a pretty sight but a serious evolution of design from working sail boats that had to sail fast in the winter conditions of Nova Scotia and the New England coast,” said Malcolm.

He said he was also keen to produce a simply laid out mechanical, electrical and hydraulic system, something which can be maintained by the captain so that down time and costs can be reduced. Accommodation would be for six with larger than normal cabins. “We have tried to design a lay out that will bring a long term owner and captain satisfaction with a good resale value,” said Malcolm.

With the immense amount of experience Malcolm Bromilow brings from years sailing some of the world’s finest privately owned schooners, his fund of knowledge must be one well worth tapping into if you are in the market for a yacht of this ilk.
Contact: Malcolm Bromilow tel: 33 609 98 37 06. Poste 9104, Port Vauban, Antibes, France 06600.