On a bright spring morning in Southern Brittany, the second JFA Long Island 85 catamaran NDS Evolution gracefully leaves the dock in Concarneau. There is a breeze of 25 knots blowing and within minutes of the sails being hoisted, the 26.25 metre yacht is racing along at 15 knots.
It doesn’t take much for her to get up to speed. During her sea trials in France she proved this expertly by achieving six knots of speed in just five knots of wind. The transition from power to sail is seamless. Lines lead back to a flybridge equipped with hydraulic winches, which offers excellent manoeuvrability and easy sail handling, even with a limited crew.
The Long Island semi-custom catamaran was designed by the Marc Lombard Yacht Design Group to a simple design brief. The owners, who were already experienced catamarans owners, revealed their plans to circumnavigate the globe, including visits to both poles with family living aboard for long periods. High performance and comfort were key.
As a result, the 85 sailing catamaran offers the interior space and performance of a much bigger monohull, but with a smaller draft and more stability. The draft, which measures just 2.24 metres, also ensures access to many of the world’s best anchorages.
Drawing on JFA Yachts’ 25-year history and consequent reputation for constructing reliable, luxurious, ocean going vessels, NDS Evolution was built from an aluminium hull and composite superstructure. The size of the yacht and her large freeboard also deliver a smooth and comfortable ride, thanks to the powerful carbon rig.
Great attention was also given to ensure the yacht was simultaneously lightweight and high performance. The hull, superstructure and limited use of teak decking all contribute to the overall displacement of just 56 tonnes. The yacht’s performance, reliability and style are further embedded in the choice of a carbon mast and boom and fat head mainsail.
The deck layout is generous making sail handling even easier; the cockpit is kitted out with a lounge area to starboard and dining table to port, with each side flanked by a large sunpad. Like the flybridge, this area can be completely closed off and heated in cooler climes; perfect for NDS Evolution’s adventurous itinerary. There is ample storage for an inflatable stand up paddleboard, wakeboard, four bicycles and diving equipment while a five-metre tender can be easily launched with a hydraulic Tenderlift platform for adventures ashore.
Inside, JFA Yachts’ attention to detail is no less noticeable. Darnet Design was brought on board to create the yacht’s interior décor, which prominently features oak and walnut woodwork and creates a contemporary ambiance. The elegant full beam owner’s cabin sits forward, with windows on all three sides offering panoramic views.
Accommodation is for nine guests and four crew members. As well as the owner's cabin, this includes a children’s cabin with three beds and two double guest cabins. The crew are treated to plenty of space across a twin cabin and large galley equipped with a crew mess.
The interior comfort, sail handling stability and high performance of this smooth cruising catamaran means NDS Evolution is more than up to her upcoming far flung adventures as her owners prepare to circumnavigate the globe.