Susan Swope’s father was a Hatteras dealer who also built oceangoing houseboats, so she tasted the cruising life early. As an adult, she had a 54-foot Azimut and then switched to a 61-foot Outer Reef. “We were tooling back one day from someplace, and I realized that I liked going slow and seeing the sights and not being windblown,” she says.
Her 61-foot Outer Reef wasn’t exactly a slouch on speed, but it was a bit small for her needs. Swope cruises with friends, family and dogs and wanted more room for scuba gear. In July 2019, she ordered a 74-foot Outer Reef, which should be with her in the United States by the time you read this.
“We redesigned the stern of the boat,” she says. “There is a cabinet that’s going to hold a Brownie YachtPro [compressor] and the tanks, so all of that will be contained. The tanks can be filled right there and in the water, and it’s all out of the way when you’re not using it.”
Outer Reef president Jeff Druek says the original swim platform is now more of a sports platform. “You could probably put seven or eight people with dive gear on this platform,” he says. “It’s very spacious.”
Inside, Outer Reef made custom enhancements, says interior designer Deborah Dorn: “We commissioned pieces, we have vintage pieces, we have special finishes. It’s a more elevated interior in terms of products, artwork and artisan-made items.”
Swope’s big concern now? Where to go first.
“I think in the summer, we may go up the East Coast. We’ve got great plans, maybe to go to Bermuda and further down the islands to the Turks and Caicos, and I have this idea in my head about going to the Mediterranean,” she says. “Diving is just a big bonus.”