As with the salon, curved sliding doors were substituted for the usual at sliders, allowing the bulkhead to be moved without compromising the sense of space in the salon or skylounge.
Outside the skylounge and still protected by the overhang of the bridge is an alfresco entertaining area with plenty of space for guests. The granite bar was turned around to face aft and provide those seated on the permanent stools with a view, and a large granite-topped freezer cabinet just aft doubles as a second serving counter for the bartender.
The upper deck also has a large settee to starboard facing a plasma Sunbrite TV for daytime viewing, and a cabinet conceals an immense summer kitchen with a Wolf double grill plus cooktop combination.
A 2,500-pound Steelhead telescoping davit allows the tender to be launched off either side or over the stern (or lowered onto stern chocks on the platform for parties) and, with the jet ski launched as well, the boat deck is party central. During one early celebration, the yacht held 80 guests easily.
One area that particularly benefited from the three-foot stretch was the flying bridge, because the added length allowed the installation of a full-sized jacuzzi spa (the pilothouse had to be reinforced to carry the weight of the water).
A compact version of the pilothouse electronics are in a fiberglass console, and the owner reversed the surrounding windscreen into a forward-raked venturi for more space and reduced breeze. The flat dashboard outboard of the helm converts to a sunpad with cushions that store under the dash, and the companion seat is designed so the back can flip fore or aft so guests can either face forward or carry on conversations with others in the spa. Aft, a benchseat wraps around the entire bridge.
Stairs in the after corner of the salon lead to the crew quarters, which can also be accessed directly through a watertight door from the swim platform. In the world of crew cabins, these are certainly five-star. Finished to the same standards, the crew live as well as the guests, surrounded by cherrywood, marble, and granite.
Just abaft the engineroom is what might be called a pump room, which has the A/Sea 75 kW inverters, seamless transfer boxes, and air conditioning chillers, all protected from engine heat with air conditioning. A second washer and dryer makes housekeeping easy on the crew.
A soundproof and watertight door separates the engineroom that, no surprise, has blue mood lighting giving it an eerie Twilight Zone look when seen through the window in the door. But, with the normal bright white illumination turned on, there is sparkle from the polished diamond plate flooring that separates the two 1,836-horsepower Caterpillar C32A diesels.
Equipment aboard the 108 includes an 1,800 gpd Sea Recovery watermaker, Headhunter sewage system, and both Sea-Fire and Flexifog fire control in the engineroom. For use in the tropics, a 20-ton Marine Air chilled water system keeps the yacht cool.
Because the yacht has been fitted with Naiad zero-speed stabilizers that have a considerable at-rest electrical load, a pair of Kohler 65 kW generators are installed. Racks above the engines carry additional equipment, a workbench is aft, and the required emergency fire pump is tucked to one side.
This 108 was built to Det Norske Veritas (DNV) classification, as well as MCA compliance. Those stringent regulations were met by Horizon, which has long experience in building commercial vessels to class. Among a telephone-book-sized list of requirements, this meant watertight doors that were cleverly concealed so as not to intrude on guest areas, and details such as higher (39-inch) rails around the boat and main decks.
Part of the DNV requirements included a comprehensive fire fighting system powered by a third auxiliary generator in the lazarette, as well as hooded fire suits for the crew. This 108 also had the hull interior coated with an additional layer of fire-retardant resin over the vinylester resin Horizon uses for blister protection.
Forward, the 108 has oversized hawse pipes and cleats for line-handling ease, as well as a pair of Maxwell 4500 anchor windlasses. Two Maxwell 3500 warping windlasses are on the aft deck and one thoughtful addition is the "pop-up" warping windlass centered in the swim platform. Since this windlass is electric, it can be used at night for adjusting dock lines without starting the engines for the hydraulic power needed for the other windlasses.
With the 1,836-horsepower Cats (standard power for the Horizon 105 is a pair of 1,550-horsepower Cats), the 108 has a top speed of 18 knots and a comfortable cruise at 15.5 knots. With the nearly 5,200-gallon fuel capacity, she has a range of about 1,100 nautical miles at 12 knots.
Beautifully finished and equipped, this Horizon 108 is a fine example of what can be achieved by a team of yachtsmen and an experienced builder.
And, by the way: With all those lights, you definitely won't miss her in an anchorage!
Horizon America, (561) 626-5615; www.horizonyacht.com