The article I am recalling, I believe the boat that this couple bought, was not what I would call major modified, but the entry was made such that the women could get down inside easier, maybe putting the doorway all the way to the cockpit floor, a handle or two different. Along with, this was there 4th or 5th Catalina that they bought new. This made it such Gerry was willing to do a bit of customization without going completely whacko in the process. IIRC she had MS or some such thing, so it was how to get it such that she could still sail, do some things and get around. I do not recal ALL of the mods, but they were pretty simple per say.
Otherwise, I am sure as you say, getting a major custom job from Gerry, is about as good as the cowboys, or my local seadogs....ooops, seaslugs.....oops. what ever they are into the superbowl too!
Dhays hit the nail pretty good too, all of these boats are good boats for there cost etc. Each has some things that push one persons buttons, but not anther's. I know folks with most of these brands mentioned, ALL like there boats. ALL can name why they choose Bene over catalina over Jeanneau, or vise versa, and most also have opposite tastes on things, ambiance wanted, storage setup one way or another, or sailing wants.....
She drives me boat,
I drives me dinghy!