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Big News from the 2014 Miami International Boat Show

Michael Verdon

The U.S.-built Sea Ray L650 Fly has narrowed the design gap with its European competitors. The 65-foot, four-stateroom flybridge boat is the first of Sea Ray’s L series. The open salon features large windows, well-crafted walnut cabinetry, and rift-cut hickory floors, among other elegant design elements. The bow area offers a curved lounge and sun pads and the flybridge is equipped with a sunroof that can be opened manually. (www.searay.com/l-class)

Chris-Craft, the perennial U.S. brand, debuted its Launch 36, which can serve as a large day boat or a megayacht tender. The sleek, teak-covered 36-footer has Chris-Craft’s traditional soft lines, with an open cockpit that breaks into two social areas fore and aft. The two-stateroom cabin can sleep up to five, and the large head has a separate shower stall. The newest Chris was a classic centerpiece at the indoor show in the Miami Beach Convention Center. (www.chriscraft.com)

Back Cove Yachts, a builder of Downeast-style weekenders, launched its largest model in Miami. The Back Cove 41 has the simple, straight profile and high prow you expect from a Maine builder of classic boats, along with impeccable fit and finish. The cockpit is clutter-free and uncomplicated, with two lounges a full galley, and the helm station. Two staterooms can be found belowdecks. (www.backcoveyachts.com)

The Italian builder Azimut Yachts, which launched its 84 Flybridge in Italy in 2012, introduced an “Americanized” version at Miami. Unlike most U.S.-bound boats, which typically include merely a converted 120-volt electrical system, for this model Azimut worked closely with its U.S. dealer, MarineMax, to design an entirely new version, which is barely recognizable compared to the European version. Differing elements include new stairwells and hull windows, a new lower-deck layout that features a master stateroom with its own entrance, and upgraded stonework and marble, plus dozens of other fine touches. (www.azimutyachts.com)

The new Maiora 23 provides the template for the future fleet of this brand from Italy’s Fipa Group. The 77-foot yacht features a gently curved superstructure, an unusual mini hard top on the aft part of the flybridge, and a teak-clad salon. The four-stateroom interior includes a full-beam master suite amidships. The all-weather 23 is a durable vessel that will perform in rough coastal waters from New England to Florida. (www.maiora.it)

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