European Yacht of the Year winners unveiled

The winners of the European Yacht of the Year Award have been unveiled at the boot Düsseldorf show.

The Luxury Cruiser award went to Halberg Rassy's 372, an 11.35-meter performance yacht that was praised for being "surprisingly fast" and having "fantastic performance in rough seas." Boasting five deck hatches for access to the luxurious interior, the craft marries "quality in materials with modern taste for light interiors" according to the judges. With a 42kW/55HP engine, the HR372 has a range of approximately 845 natutical miles.

The Grand Soleil 46 won the Performance Cruiser category, with judges praising the "Superior Italian" design and fine sailing abilities along with its price tag. The 14-meter yacht is designed and built by Cantiere del Pardo in Italy.

In the family cruiser category, the Dufour 405 won as embodying a "happy marriage between taste, volume, design and good gimmicks." Designed for long-distance journeys, this 12.17-meter yacht comes in two or three cabin varieties, with plenty of space for the whole family below deck in the roomy galley. All in all, the judges found it difficult to criticize the 405, concluding that "All in all, maybe she is the best compromise boat in the actual market."

The Best Multihull Award went to the Outremer 49, a 14.98-meter catamaran, whilst the "Special Boat" category was presented to the Seascape 18, a beachable two-person yacht for "quick, light and fun sailing for a nice price."

Winners were selected by an 11-strong jury of European yachting journalists and presented on day 1 of boot Düsseldorf. The show runs through January 31.

Website: http://www.boot.de

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