In 2012, Sunreef Yachts delivered its first megayacht made of fiberglass, Houbara. Houbara also marked Sunreef’s first 82 Double Deck, a sailing catamaran with a mezzanine-like level inside the main deck. Sunreef likes to say its catamarans are ideal alternatives to motoryachts, given the spaciousness, comfort at sea, and lower fuel consumption. Houbara’s owners certainly agree. Having previously owned a motoryacht, they commissioned the sailing megayacht so they can cruise the world—and they’ve covered a good deal of it to date.
In fact, the husband half of the owners says that he and his wife actually wanted a sailing catamaran before they bought their motoryacht, but they were told that platform might not be the best for the conditions in the Med. They were also concerned about finding marinas able to accommodate the beam. However, while in Barcelona a few years ago, they happened to see the Sunreef 102 Ipharra. The husband turned to his wife and declared, “That’s the boat we need!”
With an LOA of 82 feet (23.99 meters) and a beam of 37 feet (11.2 meters), Houbara has the dimensional advantages of a cat. But, she is also significantly different. First, note the two-level ports. The lower stretch of glass is in the master suite, while the top ports bring light on in to the “double deck” saloon, which we’ll get to shortly. Also note her hulls. They are anything but the cramped quarters of cats of the past. In fact, the husband says he and his wife liked how they wouldn’t be living in tiny, dark spaces.
Because the owners planned to use Houbara and truly live aboard for stretches at a time, a welcoming, home-like atmosphere was essential. They worked with Sunreef to create the flower boxes you see adjacent to the aft-deck sunpad (one of three pads here). There’s also a nice dining/relaxing area across the megayacht’s deck and stowage for dive equipment beneath the aft sunpad.
Here’s the view from the above-mentioned mezzanine aboard the Sunreef Double Deck. The wife likes to paint, so imagine the inspiration she’s been finding so far on Houbara’s travels around the Caribbean and southern United States. She can keep her painting supplies in special stowage here, too. The mezzanine is made possible partly due to stepped chines in the hull.
Here’s an overview of the mezzanine, forward to port, and how the full open floor plan of the saloon appears. You can make out the edge of the helm chair, raised to starboard and forward of a bar area. Bubinga wood lends a warm feel to the space; light-tone birch is used below decks.
This inside helm station benefits from good views, given the raised position. It also allows the captain to share in the conversations with the owners and their guests more readily when people are gathered in the saloon. There have been plenty of opportunities for conversations so far, too, given the 11,000 miles Houbara had covered by February of this year.
Similar to the saloon, Houbara’s full-beam master suite, also on the main deck, is two levels. It occupies 344 square feet (32 square meters). That’s a hot tub you see in the far corner, near the stairs leading down to excellent walk-in (walk-through, really) space in one hull. The opposite hull has the en suite head. Recall that the wife likes to paint—her work hangs above the bed.
The owners of Houbara plan to cruise mostly on their own, without guests, though they do have two extra staterooms aboard if friends or relatives do join them. One is a queen stateroom, and the other is this twin stateroom. Each are below decks and do not feel tight, thanks to Sunreef’s in-house design team. Two to three crew are also accommodated on the megayacht.
How’s this for a cheery work space? The galley makes good use of space, situated slightly down to starboard off the main deck, though not below decks. Four ports, in combination with the vividly colored lacquer and the birch wood, keep the megayacht’s galley light and bright.
Sunreef tops the 82 Double Deck with a flying bridge that makes you feel as if you’re aboard a megayacht larger than 82 feet. It’s slightly larger than the master suite, occupying about 377 square feet (35 square meters). Sunreef’s design team outfitted Houbara with the helm you see here, plus a barbecue and bar, a dining area (of course), and space for lounges to be arranged.
While Sunreef says Houbara can achieve 12 knots under power (twin 355-hp Cummins), her owner says the megayacht averaged about 13 knots while covering 1,000 miles over four days in the Caribbean earlier this year. He and his wife are looking forward to cruising Cuba next, then heading across the Atlantic—with Houbara on her own bottom—for summer in the Med. Come autumn, they’ll head through the Suez Canal for the Seychelles, Maldives, and eventually South Africa, Panama, Hawaii, and other Pacific Ocean destinations.