Gentleman's Day Cruiser 53

This little cruiser could charm the barnacles off a derelict freighter. Ingo Pfotenhauer, who conceived the yacht, refers to her as the Gentleman's Day Cruiser, and indeed she is.

This little cruiser could charm the barnacles off a derelict freighter. Ingo Pfotenhauer, who conceived the yacht, refers to her as the Gentleman's Day Cruiser, and indeed she is.

Pfotenhauer thinks most of the day boats on the market devote too much space to the accommodations, "where no one wants to spend much time. This boat's main reason for being is entertainment on a grand scale. Pfotenhauer says the cockpit could easily accommodate a sit-down luncheon for 12.

In a previous life, Pfotenhauer skippered the 204-foot motoryacht Virginian. "One of the great pleasures of my former boss was to cruise scenic areas while playing cards or backgammon with friends", he said. That experience led him to develop the Day Cruiser in collaboration with naval architect Daniel Skira.

As whimsical as the Day Cruiser appears, it makes a great deal of sense. The cockpit is 28 feet long and about 16 feet wide. Where I come from, that's enough floor space for a dance. The space lends itself to a scattering of casual wicker furniture and lamps in the Victorian style, or to ghastly plastic patio furnishings if you want to stage a party for the children. You would, of course, have the parties catered, so the complex preparations don't overtax the small galley.

Your guests will laugh at the weather. Clear vinyl curtains drop to cover the large openings, and the space may be air conditioned. The accommodations forward of the wheelhouse have a complete full-size head plus a settee opposite the galley. This settee converts to a double berth, so after you shoo away the pesky guests, you and your mate may stagger below for a tryst.

On the serious side, this is a real boat. Powered by a pair of 300 hp Cummins diesels, she'll have a top speed of 22 knots. A 15kW generator will supply the AC lighting and all the other ship's electrical demands. The design team specified sound attenuation by Soundown. Her 2-foot, 8-inch draft will grant entry to all but the shallowest of coves and harbors.

The styling recalls an earlier time. The canoe stern reminds us of the elegant Feadships of the last century, and the clipper bow takes us back even further. Compromises are inevitable in yacht design, and the most obvious one on the Day Cruiser is the length of the superstructure relative to the length of the foredeck. She'd be more elegant with a longer foredeck and a more exaggerated clipper bow. The faux flying bridge hides the sunbathing area.

Skira and Pfotenhauer designed the yacht for construction in aluminum with the scantlings of a larger vessel. They sized everything aboard to the standards of a large yacht to ensure the comfort and ease of movement for the guests.

"Too many boats of today are destination-oriented", Pfotenhauer said. "This will be a boat where the ride is more important than the destination. So be it".

Contact: Ingo Pfotenhauer, (954) 779-7900; ingo1@earthlink.net.