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Brooklin Boat Yard Delivers 91-Foot Custom Sailing Yacht

The 91-foot sloop Sonny III was built in record time for an owner who couldn’t live without his sailboat.

The 91-foot custom sailing superyacht Sonny III has recently completed its sea trials. The cold-molded sloop, built by Brooklin Boat Yard in Maine, is 21 feet longer than the owner’s previous sailboat. The owner had actually sold the 70-foot Sonny II when he realized, in a panic, that he needed a sailboat. Bruce Johnson and Brooklin Boat Yard’s design office followed a similar brief as that for Sonny II, but added more accessibility throughout the yacht. The designers addressed the owner’s mobility concerns by incorporating chair lifts at each companionway, power reclining chair in the master suite, side-board ladders, and a special transom-boarding platform.

The team did a great job incorporating the mobility aids. Sonny III retains an elegant, classic look, with a flushed teak deck, aggressively raked bow, reversed transom, and twin-cockpit configuration. The dual cockpits allow guests to remain safe in the center cockpit while the sail handling is accomplished in the aft cockpit. Sonny III has 3,500 square feet of sail area. The yacht’s double headsail rig is operated by hydraulic furlers, with in-boom hydraulic furling for the main sail. Sonny III has a cold-molded, laminated-wood hull with carbon reinforcements in high-load areas.

The yacht’s most impressive accomplishment is that it was built in just a year and a half—about half the time it might take other yards for such a technically complex project. “I would expect a design process of six months for a yacht this size before the yard could even begin to cut wood,” said designer Bruce Johnson. “Due to the aggressive build schedule, we began construction six weeks after starting to work with the owner.”


The quality certainly was not sacrificed inside or out. The interior includes a crew cabin forward with private head and stall shower, two guest staterooms forward of the mast, and an amidships saloon with an elliptical dining area. The full-beam master stateroom is positioned aft. Johnson used a classic 1930s Herreshoff style across the interior, using white and cream paintwork that is dramatically offset by American cherry joinery, leather upholstery, and a teak-and-maple sole. Sonny III’s look is clean and majestic.

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