The amazing Privilege Serie 6 – Rolls Royce of the Sea
A walk through guided tour by Brent Vaughan
There are few that catamaran manufactures in the world you could compare to Rolls Royce, but that’s where Privilege comfortably sit in the spectrum of builders. Exquisite finishes and attention to detail, large luxurious living spaces and accommodation, and solid uncompromising engineering and construction making the boat not only a real sailors boat, but one that you would not second guess when crossing the Atlantic.
I was lucky enough to spend a day exploring the latest 6 Serie recently launched and on display at the Prilege factory located at the famous Les Sables d’Olone on the Atlantic Coast of France in the Bay of Biscay.
Les Sables d’Olone is famous for the Vendee Globe round the world yacht race that starts and finishes in it’s port. The Vendee Globe has a strong link to Privilege which helps explain the DNA behind this brand that has kept its longevity over 30 years as they both share the same founder.
Philippe Jeantot was twice world champion in single handed sailing and the founder of Vendee Globe, but when it came to cruising around the world with his family, he did not want a racing yacht. So he founded Privilege and designed a catamaran that would be strong, secure and comfortable. This is critical incredent that sets Privilege apart from most of the big luxury cat builders, as there is an unspoken commitment to robust safety the comes through in the designs which you really notice when walking through the construction facility.
Resin infusion technology is used throughout keeping the structure very strong, while every part is fibreglassed together rather than using glues or bonding agents. This takes many many more hours to build and slows down the build process, but the outcome is a incredibly stiff product that doesn’t flex. The factory also has its own timber shop where the internal furniture is all handcrafted on site, ensuring the joinery and installation is perfect and not rushed.
Designed by Marc Lombard, the Privilege Serie 6 is a dominating craft on the water as you approach from the dock. It features very high freeboards with slender bows that provide unbeatable buoyancy. Bridgedeck clearance is high as well, with the iconic forward peak extending out from the saloon in the middle of the boat that houses the massive owners cabin and king sized walk around bed. Many of the Privileges have been painted and this boat is in a silver colour with a reflection you could do you hair in.
Boarding the boat is of course from the transom where you step onto a large aft step, with timber teak decking leading you all the water up to a large duckboard where a hydraulic platform houses a centre console RIB tender. This is a highlight for anyone with visions of diving the Caribbean or South Pacific as you can rack the bottles along the transom and easily place into the RIB before lowering and speed off in the tender with a full party of divers.
Stepping onboard and you notice there are full stainless steel handrails all the way around the boat. Though not exactly light, they are very robust and an unbeatable hand hold in lumpy conditions as you walk down the deck.
The cockpit enjoys a large entertaining space complete with outdoor 5kg icemaker, sink and storage for cocktail glasses etc. Walking inside and you are presented with Frank Darnet’s beautiful interior design featuring a large, beautiful and very comfortable saloon and leather lounge, with LED highlights, plush headliners, blinds and timber furniture surrounding finished with leather trim.
You also have a large flat screen TV on the main bulkhead and a nav station where many of the electronics are set in addition to what is on the helm. The boat comes with Raymarine 12” GS125 touch screen GPS chartplotter, plus radar, sonar, VHR radio, P70 autopilot with remote wireless control and AIS. There is a secondary &” multifunctional screen in the cockpit with a multitude of repeaters on each helm.
There is an LNB satellite TV antenna plus omnidirectional TV antenna. Wifi Yacht Router with 3G and 4G with booster aerial, iridium sate phone and more.
The Serie 6 features 4 generous cabins, each with their own bathroom and storage plus a crew quarters in the forward starboard bow that can either be accessed through a deck hatch or internal door. The main cabin has a bed that you can sit down on, a side lounge, an office, plenty of storage for clothing and personal affects, and an ensuite only accessible to the inhabitants. It is rare, even of boats of this size, to see such large voluminous cabins because most cats will either have beds down in the hull, or shelved on the bridge deck. However this additional comfort is unique to Privilege due to their fore peak cabin design stretching across the bridgedeck. The boat also has all the creature comforts for modern living including a washing machine, a 200L per hour watermaker plus secondary 100L watermaker. All toilets are fresh water flushing to keep odors away. Not that you are short of water onboard with 1,300L of fresh water capacity.
They galley also enjoys the facilities, storage and space you would normally only see in a commercial kitchen. A full sized standup fridge and freezer, plus two more additional fridges under the countertops, oven, stove, microwave and plenty of storage and bench space.
Up on the flybridge is the main helm with full controls and surrounded by sun lounges and a cockpit table. There are twin helms allowing you to get either side of the massive 137 sqm mainsail to trim her or keep full visibility around you. With electric winches to trim the mainsheet, traveller and jib, it is easy for a short handed crew to operate. The overlapping 92 sqm genoa also has an electric furler.
The 27.3m mast is all carbon, as is the canoe boom that houses the mainsail when it is dropped. Both are painted white to keep them cool and resist UV damage. The carbon rig helps take considerable weight out of the boat up high, which helps with a smoother ride and prevents the pendulum affect heavier rigs can have on cats.
The engine rooms are large cavernous spaces, accessible both from the cockpit with plenty of working space around the motor, air-conditioning systems, 13.5 Onan generator and 4kva Onan generator and watermaker. But you also have access directly above the motor from the aft cabins. Of course there is plenty of insulation so sound is low, but you get the big advantage of having the weight of the motors further forward and with the simple and reliable shaft drive. This means bigger motors can be installed and this Serie 6 features twin 160hp Yanmar motors which give both good fuel consumption at lower speeds, but higher speeds under motor incase you need to run from the weather. To back it up, there is 2,000L of diesel capacity onboard.
This boat is designed to go anywhere for long periods of time and not think twice about doing it…this is designed to sail around the world in safety, security and comfort. Few people in their life get to have the ‘Privilege’ (pardon the pun) of owning something as magnificent as the Serie 6 and cruising it around the world…even if you had the means and ambition to do so, normally you would be lining up for 18 months or so before you boat would be delivered.
That’s what makes this even more unique. The factory have this boat as a factory vessel which is now available for immediate delivery. Given the long lead times stretching out for many of the manufacturers around the world, this is a rarity that will no doubt disappear soon enough to someone ready to experience a great life journey.