Long Distance Adventurer

James Dumergue — 12 March 2020
Dependable systems and long-range tanks make this liveaboard a contender for offshore exploring

When you decide to take your adventures offshore, there are a few key considerations that go into deciding on the right boat. It's got to have big fuel tanks, and luxurious creature comforts to make adventures enjoyable even when you’re at anchor. On top of this, for remote adventures to be successful it has to be dependable — what good would sumptuous lounges, elevated views and ample accommodations be if all systems don’t go? The Maritimo M64 has all of this and more. 

Ask any seasoned ocean explorer, commercial operator or avid fisho for their opinion and more often than not they'll say reliability is the key to success. Maritimo has built its brand around the idea that reliability is the direct result of dependable systems, and this is the bedrock for their boats to stand the test of time. 




LONG DISTANCE TRAVELS

If you are considering the M64, you've more than likely been around boats and are looking for the next adventure. The M64 is a classic blend of indoor and outdoor Australian living that can travel the long distances to make these adventures possible. 

As the mainland disappears and your bow points for the islands ahead, you'll appreciate the thought that has gone into this design, particularly around proven reliability. This is essential because blissful destinations can mean limited shoreside services.

Shafts have struts, rudders and thrusters. Together with the right prop, they are a formidable force while being versatile and unflagging workers that are hard to beat in the long haul. Even with one engine, this combination can get you safely to shore for servicing or repairs.

GOING WITH TRADITION

Does sticking with tradition impact Maritimo’s competitiveness as boats improve their fuel-efficiency? The answer is no, and the reason is they haven't stuck their head in the sand and let change pass by. They have adapted, but they have done it in a way that applies physics instead of complicated technology.

Onboard with me for the review of the M64 is the recently crowned world champions, Tom Barry-Cotter and Rosco Willaton from Maritimo Racing. When not competing on the world stage, their day jobs are crucial at Maritimo's Gold Coast headquarters. Tom is the head designer, and Roscoe applies his immense experience to new model testing and propping. 

Tom says the straight shaft arrangement is competitive on fuel consumption because Maritimo’s mantra is simplicity reigns supreme for reliability. They focus on incremental improvements on hull design, to reduce not only wave-making forces but also drag by way of less wetted surface area. Two chines optimise the boat at both low and high speeds, with the outer chine assisting with low speed and at-rest stability — it also allows for maximum accommodations volume. When the hull lifts off the outer chine, it planes off the second inner and narrower chine, reducing the wetted surface and in turn the fuel consumption — simple physics. 

As this model sits in the water and transitions to the plane, it has a lovely balanced feel. Tom explains, "...balance and centre of gravity are key components that affect both the racing and production boats." 

He expanded to explain how the design incorporates the positioning of the machinery and liquid loads according to the centre of buoyancy. Combined with an optimised shaft angle and well-chosen props, and you’ve got fuel efficiency competitiveness. 

The acceleration feels like a sprinter positioned in starting blocks, with explosive forward momentum, as opposed to the tail-heavy transfer of energy forward, and the centre of balance positioned further aft. 

Smooth and notably quiet, the Standard 900hp Volvo D13 engines propel the test model to speeds that required an adjustment so the drone could keep pace. Paired with ZF gearboxes and the optional Express Joystick System (EJS), this setup enables precise low-speed joystick control with a traditional straight shaft arrangement. Working in unison with the hydraulic bow and stern thrusters, all the thinking is done on your behalf, enabling you to direct the boat with precision. Plus, you have engine and thruster controls available if required.

STEP ON BOARD

On deck, whether it's in the cockpit or moving forward, the raised bulwarks, deep wide side decks and sturdy high railings enhance the feel of safety and stability. The raised sheerline forward towards the bow combined with the flare of the hull are excellent bluewater characteristics too.

Of all the places to be outside, the one that made the biggest impression was upstairs. Optioned on this model is elevated reclining on the elevated flybridge aft deck. At anchor or underway in the right sea state, there's nothing better than an ample flybridge aft deck with dual chaise lounges and watching the view pass through your toes. It's a remarkably straightforward approach to enhancing the area and the continuation of the stainless railing design is light on view impediment and heavy on votes for the top spot. Chaise lounging with airflow all around takes out the title for most enjoyable location at all times of the day, 

with the best-supporting feature being the extended awning.

Just inside this fully enclosed flybridge is a decent sized enclosed lounge which can be adapted for additional sleeping quarters when passage making or accommodating the summer tribal get-togethers. On this model, the requests were for more indoor seating for the temperate climate of its home port, and the layout has options to suit different uses. I like the option where the lounge is straight rather than L-shaped for more flow from inside to outside with the bi-fold door open. The enormous sunroof opens and floods natural light and fresh air over the middle of the flybridge, benefiting both the lounge and helm.

The helm and driving position has a clean and modern layout. Pompenette Helm chairs facing three touch screen Garmin MFD's, with the engine controls, joystick and hydraulic bow and stern thrusters on the outboard side. In automobile fashion, the engine data display is directly in front of the sports car style steering wheel.

THE MAIN DECK

Maritimo does a stylish job of their staircases. Smooth curves form a pod supporting each wooden step. Housed at the bottom of the stairs to the flybridge are the electrical panels for both AC and DC supply. Traditional circuit breaker distribution panels continue the company’s ethos of uncomplicated reliability. The position is conveniently placed just inside the doors to the port side, opposite the galley. 

I have always liked the way Maritimo tackles the aft galley arrangement, where the island bench separates the galley from the traffic flow. When the entire bulkhead is open, thanks to the bi-fold doors, the galley gains a second entrance, avoiding the bottleneck often experienced by aft galley arrangements. 

The full-size upright refrigeration and freezer space accommodates chilled and frozen provisions practically and effectively. To port below the stairs, is a huge supplementary drawer freezer about the right length for some sizable pelagic fillets or extended cruising provisions.

The saloon is a step up from the galley, giving better sightlines to the water. I would like to see them lower the sill heights a little further in future models to enhance viewing even more. Sturdy handholds enable you to move around in rough seas and if you are in the rough stuff often, you can add more handholds to suit. 

Both the lounge that surrounds two sides of the dining table to port and the L-shaped seating to starboard offer ample storage below their soft leather cushions. The leather on the lounges is sumptuous and comfortable — well suited to stretching out with a good book or an afternoon siesta.

On the deck, the cockpit is level with the galley. The fixed dining table slightly scallops back into the transom seating — a nice touch for allowing the outside seats to be part of the conversation without a big lunge. 

The standard island transom houses a BBQ on one side and freezer on the other, accessible from the large swim platform. In the centre is access to the enormous lazarette below the cockpit floor. There are options for this area, but I prefer the ample storage, especially when you see how easy it is to access with the transom lifted. Particularly handy as a watersports storage cavern, it's big enough for the paddleboards and dive gear for escapades on and below the water.

ACCOMMODATION

Forward of the saloon and down the companionway are the accommodations, made up on the test model by three substantial cabins and three bathrooms — big pluses for extended cruising and time onboard. There is the option for four cabins if desired.

The cabin to port serves a variety of needs. Spacious and well-lit, it sleeps two in side by side twin beds. Set on runners, these beds can unite to form a double bed with impressive walkarounds on both sides. The icing on the cake is the Pullman bed above the head of the berths below for a triple berth arrangement. The immense cabin height allows this additional berth plenty of headspace. The private ensuite is a welcome addition for guest privacy or when there are kids on board.

To starboard, the dual entry bathroom serves as a significant day head or as a private ensuite with an entrance from within the forward VIP cabin. The centreline VIP berth has suitable access for all ages either side and proper natural ventilation from the dual deck hatches. Like all the cabins, it is well equipped with electrical outlets and all-important USB ports for charging.

The master cabin has a private entrance with access to the bathroom possible near the door, allowing usage before you step down into the owner's retreat. The overall length of the bathroom is substantial, with ample bench space and storage to satisfy long stayers, and the shower cubicle is flooded with natural light from the overhead skylight. 

Amidships the master cabin is blessed with a king-sized berth and flanked by full cabin length windows. The view is good, although a little limited from a distance due to the high standard of certification that Maritimo maintains for bluewater ratings. In the works is a new glass that allows the vertical height of the window to increase substantially while still maintaining the CE certification.

THE WRAP

The Maritimo 64 is a boat for adventurers, but it's also for people who love to share their lifestyle. Three large cabins, three bathrooms and plenty of living space, supported by long-range tanks, loads of storage and essential simplicity to critical components are hallmarks of independence from shore side services. It's easy to operate, rides well and has benefitted from the Maritimo Racing Divisions influence by way of calculated and tested incremental improvements. Maritimo has backed themselves with a design philosophy supported by thorough testing and development in a format that looks set to stand the test of time. If its time to explore, adventure and share in luxury and style, then the M64 is well worth considering as your platform of discovery.


FACTS & FIGURES

PRICED FROM 

$2,891,500

PRICE AS TESTED

POA

GENERAL

Length (overall)  19.51m (64’)

Beam  5.72m (18’9”)

Displacement 39,000kg

Draft 1.41m (4’8”)

Weight (dry) 39,000kg

CAPACITIES

People 6 standard

Fuel 5,600L

Water 750L

Holding tank 300L

ENGINE

Make/model 2 x Volvo D13 – 900mhp

Type Diesel

Rated hp 900

Displacement 12.8L

MANUFACTURED BY

Maritimo

SUPPLIED BY

Maritimo Gold Coast

Lot 7, John Lund Dr

Hope Island, QLD

Australia 4212

W www.maritimo.com.au

P (07) 5509 3611

Tags

Review Maritimo M64 Liveaboard Offshore Flybridge

Photographer

James Dumergue