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Best of the Best 2007: Sailing Yachts

Kim Kavin

The 105-foot Royal Huisman Gliss (207.646.9504, www.royalhuisman.nl), designed by Philippe Briand, is a sleek, modern sailing yacht with an eye-catching aquamarine hull. Highlights of the interior, created by Pieter Beeldsnijder Design, are the floor-to-ceiling windows that, when lowered automatically, link the indoor main saloon with the open main cockpit. The $19 million yacht’s mast, boom, rudder, and other typically heavy components are made from carbon fiber, as is her swim platform, which can be tucked into the transom when not in use. (When opened, the platform has stowage for a tender and water toys.) Thanks to her lightweight construction and high-performance bulb keel, the sloop can achieve 15 mph.

 

Hoek Design Naval Architects designed the Holland Jachtbouw Skylge (+31.75.614.9133, www.hollandjachtbouw.nl), a 141-foot, double-masted, high-tensile aluminum alloy schooner with carbon-fiber mainsails and spars. The vessel’s exterior features a long teak deck, varnished hatches, and other old-world design elements. But inside, light-hued maple and cherry woods contribute to a contemporary appearance. The vessel’s master cabin sits forward, and the other guest cabins are behind the engine room, instead of being aft, which is the most common configuration for a yacht of this size. The designers made this change because Skylgeis expected to cruise the Mediterranean, where stern-to dockage often allows people on shore to see into an aft cabin. The yacht may be chartered for a base rate of $75,000 per week.

The 143-foot Wally Esense (+377. 93100093, www.wally.com), from the WallyEurope yard in Fano, Italy, dwarfs by 36 feet all the other custom sailing yachts that the company has built. Esense, a Bill Tripp design, has a massive teak deck that is free of clutter: no coachroof, cockpit enclosure, or obstacle course of hatches. The interior, by French architect Odile Decq, is a study in crisp contrasts, with dark oak flooring, bright white seating, exposed matte carbon cabinets, and metallic white bulkheads. The $27 million yacht will remain the company’s flagship until later this year or early 2008, when Wally launches a 148-footer.

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