Join Date: May 2001
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A perfect cruisin boat
Your question opens up a vast area for comment and, with no info on your experience, preferences, intended itinerary, length of time to cruise or description of crew, the comments you''d receive could stray very wide of the mark, indeed. Usually, the more well-honed the question on a BB, the more useful the answers, so I''d encourage you to repost with more info.
Re: the specifics that do lie in your question, Beneteau is a ''price boat'' and, as such, is built to come in at a competitive price in the mass-market end of sailboat choices while preserving adequate profits and paying for their large marketing and other overhead costs. As such, it doesn''t leap to mind as an optimum choice for true long-distance, blue-water cruising, no matter what they''re marketing strategy might suggest. (See...already I don''t know if I''m using the right context in which to offer opinion). OTOH, the Copelands (family of 5) recently completed 70,000 miles of offshore sailing on a stock Beneteau 38...which tends to impeach my reaction to the choice. (Alan was a Beneteau dealer, however, which might mean a bargain price on the front end, special treatment at the factory and/or a financial incentive not to bash the boat in print. Just don''t know...)
It is no doubt banal & repetitive of me to state that the larger and more complex the boat, the more you''ll work on her & the more of your cruising (and post-cruising) budget you''ll spend on her. 47 feet of boat is a LOT, especially for someone who''s been out of sailing for a while and has not cruised before (again, apologies for the assumptions...). Rather than starting at $300K and looking for the boat that fits that budget, I''d encourage you to think at length - and with the help of a good deal of research - at what you truly need, given your crew, itinerary, experience, etc. Once you''ve got the ''specs'', you can begin looking at what will meet them and only then consider price in the mix. To do it the other way around, you''ll get all the boat $300K will buy but not necessarily a boat that will get you across the first ocean without deep regret.
Also, consider using Robert Perry''s consulting service when you begin narrowing your search. A lack of broad/deep exposure to cruising yachts along with the potential price you''re going to be paying seem like good justifications for using a pro.
Good luck on the search. Despite my comments above, boat shopping can be great fun for the whole family!