Bigger is better. That was my thought after spending some time with the Horizon E88. Designer John Lindblom penned this 88-footer’s graceful lines. An unbroken sheer line accents the gently curved side windows and raked open-bridge hardtop supports (an enclosed sky lounge version is available). Large strakes and chines extend from the bow, running aft, seeming to want to take on the ocean. The E88 is also an all-weather cruising machine: Her open flybridge can be enclosed, and her extended flybridge overhang protects the aft-deck seating area.
She has a fun, beach-bum side too. The water-level beach club starts with a set of rails that define the E88’s swim-platform space, a perfect spot for an on-the-hook sunset cocktail party. A hydraulic full-width stern door opens to shade the deck.
Just inside is a lower aft lounge, which doubles as a crew mess. From here, drinks and food can be prepped and served, or you can take in some tunes with the Fusion stereo or watch the game on the 28-inch LED screen. A Sub-Zero fridge/freezer, GE microwave, sink and lounge seats round out the space.
Cruising with family? Remove the rails and lower the hydraulic platform for water-toy excursions, or go even lower to create a wading deck. With access to a hot and cold water platform shower and enclosed head, you can spend all day (or night) here.
The E88’s interior design is equally clever. The open main deck has unobstructed visibility from stem to stern. It’s a straight line from the aft deck to the forward dinette, including the marble foyer, walnut sole and semi-gloss teak-veneer cabinets. A soft, L-shaped leather sofa to port sets an upscale tone in the salon, with there’s a love seat to starboard. This is the place for conversation and cocktails or to catch a movie on the 55-inch LED screen in the entertainment center. Bose speakers fill the space with ambience-inducing surround sound.
Forward, an eight-seat wooden dining table sports custom inlays. Stowage cabinets line the portside wall, and they are recessed so as not to intrude on the living space. Opposite is your 5 o’clock spot with a marble-top bar, wine chiller and ice maker set behind doors. One cabinet over is the AC/DC breaker panel for fast access. Wire runs are straight and well-marked, and the panel’s inside is covered with Plexiglas.
Do you prefer privacy when you cook? A hi-lo glass partition between the dining area and galley separates the spaces when desired, or it can be lowered when it’s family cooking time. Another highlight is the country kitchen, with a GE microwave convection oven over the four-burner cooktop, a lower oven, a Sub-Zero full-height fridge with fridge/freezer drawers, a double sink and a GE dishwasher.
Under the windshield is a U-shaped settee with pedestal bar stool. This is where I’d be for breakfast underway; with close proximity to the galley and likely the family chef, it’s a convenient spot. To starboard is an enclosed helm station, and it functions as a solid backup helm.
Downtime is comfortable thanks to the E88’s layout of four en suite staterooms. The forepeak VIP has a queen berth on centerline, twin lockers, a Bose home theater system and a 32-inch LED screen. I appreciated the built-in bookshelves and stylish leather headboard. Abaft to port and starboard, the staterooms have twin berths, 28-inch TVs and hanging lockers. Built-in floor tracks in the rooms let you join the berths for couples. A Pullman berth is ready to deploy in the starboard stateroom for the kids.
Horizon maximizes space in the full-beam (21-foot-wide) master stateroom by placing the en suite head outboard along the port side. Twin sinks and a separate toilet compartment and shower stall add to the function, while opaque privacy doors allow light into the space even when occupied. Privacy also includes shades to cover the hull-side windows. A king-size berth is set just off-center. The room has a 46-inch LED screen and Bose theater system. Simple elegance is the style here, with leather headboard and wall panels, hull windows (yes, in the shape of Horizon’s “H”) and corner wall cutouts for tchotchkes. There is under-berth and credenza stowage.
Up top, the open flybridge can be enclosed in EZ2CY panels and air-conditioned. The forward panels are on tracks; when opening, they slide sideways without needing to be removed, making them easy to reset later. A starboard settee under the hardtop has twin hi-lo glass-top tables, and more seating is at the portside wet bar. Aft is a recessed hi-lo barbecue next to a 2,500-pound Steelhead Marine davit. There’s room for toys and lounge chairs here too. Forward, dual bench seats flank a Stidd helm chair, making the layout great for guests who want to take in the view from up high. The helm has Garmin electronics including three 15-inch displays, along with CAT engine monitors, ABT stabilizers and thrusters, and Bennett Marine trim tabs.
Cruising the coast or outer islands, the E88’s 5-foot-4-inch draft should make her a go-anywhere yacht. And I can tell you that after spending a day with the E88, I’d be happy to take her anywhere too.