Ahead of testing the Contest 49CS we had some miserable weather, certainly not the sort of conditions you’d ordinarily choose to go out in. It had been blowing 30 knots…

For some of us, sailing has always been about the functional and fundamental. We enjoy sailing for sailing’s sake. But today people want so much more from a boat and,…

The drive to include all the features we now expect of new yachts, such as easy handling, big cockpits for al fresco dining and huge accommodation volumes, all too often…

Step aboard the wide transom steps of the Aura 51 and I’d challenge even the most stubborn traditionalist or monohull enthusiast not to be in awe of the space and…

There’s a glassy calm, without a ripple on the water, yet we’re slipping along on the new Beneteau First 44 under Code 0 at four knots of boat speed. Of…

As we slipped our lines from the dock in Porto Cervo I was trying to conceal my disappointment. After being present at the original launch of the design for the…

Pride of ownership is a tricky quality to quantify. To many yacht owners looks will play second fiddle to pragmatics – practicality, space and affordability all rank higher (hence the…

It’s been more than six years since the Nautitech yard in Rochefort launched an entirely new design, but this Nautitech 44 Open marks the company’s return to the forefront of…

We’re close-hauled, sailing the new J/45 at 7.5 knots and catching up with a modern 55-footer, but slowly falling into her lee. Winding on a little mainsheet tightens the leech,…

Large cruising yachts are enormously appealing, but it’s imperative that they’re easy to tame in deteriorating weather. Yet if this is achieved through making the boat underpowered it will be…

No other yard has been as consistently successful in producing iconic models as Nautor – historically Swans are invariably the very best yachts of their era and subsequently become design…

The Hallberg-Rassy 50, the latest from the renowned Swedish marque is a near masterpiece. German Frers has once again sprinkled his fairy dust over the design, conjuring up a modern…

I have long held that bluewater cruising yachts, especially those under 40ft, have much to gain from the way today’s smaller short-handed offshore raceboats are designed and set up and…

Some yachts will always produce that instant spark of attraction. With others, the appeal may be slower burning, where facets or practicalities will help make the appeal more than skin…