In this short article we highlight some smaller catamarans finding favour with our charterers. Robert is our expert evaluator when it comes to helping you select the right boat for your charter. The following is Robert's personal take on recent introductions to the market, in his own words.
"Not long ago we featured the Excess 11 catamaran as a new entry to the small catamaran charter market. Indeed its maker Beneteau is the only one of the larger manufacturers addressing this end of the market for now. This boat has proven very popular in charter and is now available pretty much anywhere you may wish to sail.
Noticing The Excess 11’s appeal, Bali has since come in with the Catsmart at 11.3m.
These are all boats we readily quote. Here however we’d like to give some lesser-known shipyards the exposure they deserve.
An undeniable trend in charter preferences
For a while now the major European manufacturers have increased the length of their smallest catamaran into the 40ft range. Take for instance Lagoon, whose smallest new model is now the 40 at 11.74m. A 40ft cat is not a small boat by any measure, but has been considered the smallest hull dimension in which to fit not only four cabins, but four ensuites as well.
Not all charter groups need such an abundance of bathrooms. Why pay for more boat than you need, especially if yours is a more intimate charter shared with the family or just your someone special?
So a gap emerged in the size range on offer, which opened up an opportunity for some boutique builders to enter the market. I like what I'm seeing.
Catamarans as the preferred charter vessel is a fact that’s here to stay. The appeal of one-level living aboard and the stability that comes with two hulls is hard to debate for charter. The better sailing performance of a monohull just doesn’t hold sway these days. Monohulls in the smaller size range are becoming harder to find,and it takes a mid-sized monohull for comparison in space and price to these smaller cats.
The result is that many of our clients are left with monohull budgets wanting to try but unable to afford a 4-cabin-with-ensuites catamaran. So it's great to see some small but practical and more affordable cats entering the charter fleets, albeit with less toilets.
Compact catamarans in charter
The designs that have caught my attention are coming from regions where compact is definitely cool.
The C-Cat 37 comes from the long-established Comar Shipyard in Fiumicino, Italy, and it’s oozing with Italian style and fun. Its lightweight form and well-balanced sail plan makes sailing this cat an enjoyable experience for the most hardened monohull sailor. The crew will also be delighted, value for money and safety innovations being two more features of this 36 footer.
Price indication: We have a 2023 C-Cat for a week's charter next high season out of Portisco, Sardinia at just 3,210 Euro base price. Read more about the C-Cat 37 here.
The C-Cat under sail
C-Cat accommodation layout
The Aventura 37 and Aventura 34 are built by France’s STGi Marine. This long-established maker of monohulls and fishing boats now also does cruising catamarans and that has proved a winner. In 2020 Aventura signaled its intention to take the big boys head on at their own game, and they have done a credible job. We now have examples in charter from the Balaeric Islands to Turkey, and the reports are very encouraging.
Price indication - a 2022 Aventura 34 in Zadar, Croatia can be chartered for a week next high season for a base price of 4,622 Euro. Read more about the Aventura catamaran here.
The Island Spirit 380 and 410 are quality catamarans made in Thailand by a team out of Australia doing a great job at both boat building and running a charter business. Island Spirit has made a name for themselves with this small boat, and the quality and low cost have caught the eye of the larger charter companies. The first 52ft version should be ready for charter late 2024 - one to watch out for. You have the choice of sailing with Island Spirit on one of their own boats in Phuket, Koh Samui and Koh Chang for a fascinating Asian escape.
Price indication - an Island Spirit 410 is waiting for you in beautiful Koh Samui in February 2024 at just US$6,700 for a one-week sailing holiday. Read more about the Island Spirit catamarans here.
Aventura 37 layout
Aventura 34 layout
Island Spirit 410 layout
Island Spirit 380 4-cabin layout
Check out the links to these boats and operators on our website, and if you’re looking for a catamaran charter at monohull process please get in touch with me. My passion is sailing and sharing the experience of wonderful holidays afloat in exotic places.
Robert Cross, Director