Longtime yachtsman Jimmy Buffett has ordered Hull No. 1 of the Surfari 44 by Friendship Yacht Company. She’s a scaled-down version of the builder’s Surfari 58, with an adapted design by naval architect Ted Fontaine to allow for short-handed cruising.
Pacific Seacraft in North Carolina is building Buffett’s Surfari 44, which is scheduled for delivery in November 2016. Buffett plans to use the yacht as a home away from home.
“It’s the perfect extension for living the life he enjoys, whether it’s in Sag Harbor for the summer or the Keys and the Caribbean in the winter,” Fontaine stated in a press release. “A high-performance, auxiliary-powered sailing yacht, it has as strong an emphasis on speed under sail as it does speed under power, which means it goes places.”
Among the Surfari 44’s noteworthy features is what Fontaine calls a “tailgate.” In the yacht’s renderings, it looks like an overly wide swim platform, folding out and spanning 11½ feet of the hull’s 14½-foot beam. When open, it becomes a flush-level extension of the main deck living space.
“It creates a unique, clutter-free area for storing and launching all sorts of water-sports equipment and water craft,” Fontaine said.
The Surfari 44 will be the latest yacht built for Buffett, who will turn 69 in December and continues to play for legions of Parrothead fans on tour. Over the years, he has reportedly owned as many as nine other yachts, including (on the sail side) a 26-foot sloop originally designed by Nathanael Herreshoff and a 33-foot Cheoy Lee ketch, and (on the power side) a 42-foot Rybovich and a 124-foot Delta.
Buffett seems to be an ideal owner of the Surfari 44, whose target audience is experienced yachtsmen who have honed their boating skills to near-professional levels.
“They want to go fast and get there in style,” Fontaine said, “and now that they are approaching their retirement years, their need for speed is being seasoned with a newly appreciated desire for comfort and versatility afloat.”
Follow the Surfari 44 build on Twitter: search #surfari
Learn more from Ted Fontaine: go to www.fontainedesigngroup.com
See more from Friendship Yacht Company: news is posted at www.friendshipyachtcompany.com