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Dauntless 108

October 4, 2007
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Until I became a grandparent myself, I was unaware of the extraordinary lengths to which they will go for their grandchildren. In the case of Emmerson, the length is 108 feet.

This expedition motoryacht from Dauntless Yachts was designed around the needs of the owners and their granddaughter, who travels with them regularly. Planned with extensive cruising in mind for a small complement, mostly family, Emmerson‘s arrangement is a bit unusual. The main deck, rather than including a traditional saloon that accommodates a dozen or so, is divided into a number of small seating areas.

The saloon had only two chairs during our visit, but another two or three, or a sofa, could be added easily. Abaft the saloon is a delightfully cozy conversation area. Enclosed by a semicircle of full-height glass, it overlooks the afterdeck for a fantastic view of the sea beyond.

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Still, the benefits of togetherness are not ignored. The dining table seats 10 in spacious comfort, and guests can retire to the oversize sky lounge a few steps away via a central spiral staircase for post-prandial liqueurs and cigars.

While one may question the arrangement initially, it makes sense given the living pattern on long voyages. Such trips are primarily group experiences, but it’s nice to get away from the crowd occasionally for a bit of undisturbed reading or quiet time.

In addition to the many inside retreats, Emmerson has outside lounge space on all three upper decks. With wing control stations flanking the pilothouse, there is no need for an upper helm on the top deck. Tenders are stowed on the pilothouse deck, so the entire top deck is devoted to guest facilities that include a central bar abaft the mast and large sunpads forward.

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The master stateroom is forward on the main deck, where it spans the full beam of Emmerson‘s shimmering navy blue hull. Four identically sized guest staterooms occupy the midbody of the hull forward of the stern engineroom, sharing a foyer and stairway to the saloon. Three guest staterooms are fitted with queen berths, and the fourth has twins. All have heads with showers.

As befits a cruising yacht, considerable space is reserved for the crew and for service areas. Four crew members can be accommodated in two forward cabins with upper-and-lower berths and private heads. The captain’s cabin, with a single berth, is adjacent to the pilothouse. The crew mess has seating for six, so the entire crew can eat together when duties allow. A large laundry room is opposite the crew mess.

With the exception of Emmerson‘s yacht-faired steel hull and composite superstructure, she is largely a utilitarian vessel crafted for the rigors of extensive time at sea and stops in remote ports. Most furnishings are standard-purchase loose pieces (rather than a lot of highly detailed joinery) that can be arranged to suit the complement and the voyage. Likewise, the pilothouse, engineroom and working decks are first and foremost functional. This is not to suggest Emmerson is somehow a lesser yacht, just that she is well suited to her purpose.

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The galley has Gaggenau and Miele appliances and a large custom glass-door refrigerator/freezer. Sound levels during our trip were a comfortable 56 to 58 decibels in most areas, 51 in the master stateroom and 50 in the sky lounge. Vibration was minimal.

If I were to suggest any changes, I would add a few more handrails at stairs and deck peripheries to be prepared for the worst the sea might offer. A bulbous bow planned for the second hull is also a good addition that should increase range and reduce draft a bit.

-D.D.

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Contact: Dauntless/Rex Yacht Sales, (954) 463-8810; fax (954) 462-3640; [email protected]; www.rexyachts.com.

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