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Show Boats International - June / July 2006 - World Debut

Written by Mark Masciarotte

"On Hull [No.] 2," said Starkey, "the VIP suite - including the ‘skylounge' – will become the owner's suite, and there is the possibility that the starboard guest suite (through which access is available for servicing the guest suites) can be adapted as a gym with fold-down Pullmans."

No matter the final layout chosen by a customer, the arrangement allows for properly sized crew accommodations and dedicated crews' access to all decks, precluding the need for staff to use the stairways in the luxury accommodations. Furthermore, to meet the standards to receive compliance certificate from the MCA, the living spaces all conform to the requirement for multiple paths of, and the boat is fitted with the appropriate number of watertight bulkheads to prevent down flooding.

The arrangement of exterior lounges has also been given a great deal of though. All decks have combinations of open and covered spaces, and because the 14-foot crew tender/rescue boat can be carried on the foredeck, and the main tender – a 22-foot diesel Nautica RIB-stows in a garage on the lower deck, the aft decks on all levels can be easily cleared for gatherings.

The high-level of interior finish is not the only relegated to the luxury accommodations. The crew areas employ lovely contemporary joinery composed of medium-tones, naturally finished anigre panels set in contrasting light maple framing Passage doors are built using a medallion of book-matched veneers accented by a thin, dark inlaid border, which give them a rich, clean, upscale look.

All boats of this size require properly designed spaces that allow the hotel side to run during extended cruises. Vango's galley, created by specialist Fred Lillian of Restaurant Design, is absolutely first rate and is supplemented by a set of walk-ins on the same deck. On the engineering side, well-arranged machinery spaces allow easy access to all equipment for maintenance and inspection.

From the customer's perspective, the Westport 164 has it all and should be a serious contender for buyers who are looking at boats of this size. The details and systems are al there, and the execution is exemplary throughout.

"The object," said Wakefield about the design, finish, and outfitting, "was to take away any objections a potential customer might have."

Starkey agreed. "Having worked with Orin before, I had no reason to doubt that quality and attention to details would be of paramount importance. It is refreshing to work with a builder who is not trying out cut corners, but who is more concerned with developing efficient techniques for east of production over reducing costs, and I have sensed while working on this project that there is a real determination to get the interior finishes as close to perfect as possible."

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