The Zeelander Z72, announced this week at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, will be the new flagship of the luxury Dutch line. Zeelander, noted for its subtle curves and classic profile, has grown up nicely over the years. The Z44 and Z55 have found homes with owners, mostly in the U.S., who appreciate a build quality and design that are different from anything else on the water. These enthusiasts pushed the company into offering the larger 72-footer.
The new Z72 moves into the more complex realm of larger motor yachts. The brand’s designer, Cor D. Rover, is one of the hottest names in the superyacht world these days, having brought to market a number of innovative custom projects. He threw all of his superyacht instincts into the Z72.
Rover retained the curves and exterior proportions of the smaller Zeelanders on the 72, while widening the stern area. He also added some features that will be unique to any yacht. The aft deck is open and generous, measuring 20 feet across, with twin seats at the stern that overlook the water. But the transom’s one-of-a-kind hydraulic platform lifts up and out from the stern, doubling the size of the swim platform with the push of a button. On the back end of the platform is a sunbed that sits over the water, while an even larger lounge opens up between the double bed and two aft-facing seats. It’s a clever arrangement that will undoubtedly soon appear on other boats.
Just forward is a breakfast bar, with four stools, right next to the galley. Positioning the galley here is a very smart design. If the weather is fine, guests can eat and chat with the chef a few feet away in the galley. If it’s rainy or windy, a glass door and partition drop down to seal the galley and rest of the forward area in its own inner sanctum. A forward U-shaped settee with table serves as the inner dining area. The forward double helm seat swivels around to face the table. The area is surrounded by glass on all sides, so the view remains exceptional, no matter what the weather is doing.
The galley-up design turned out to be an incredible space saver for the lower deck, letting Rover include three large staterooms without a galley taking up real estate. The two aft guest cabins are the same size, and both en suite. The forward master has extra floor space, with a large bathroom that includes a walk-in, tiled shower, toilet, and its own window. Rover opted for a classic, interior, with white walls and dark wood paneling and trim. The lack of a galley belowdecks also freed up space behind the guest staterooms for the crew cabin and tender garage, which is accessed from the side of the boat. The garage will hold a RIB and jet ski.
The Z72 will have a range of power options. With the triple 1,000 hp Volvo Penta IPS engines, the highest option, it will reach a top-end speed of 40 knots. At 24 knots, it has a range of 630 nautical miles.