Contest Yachts is a Medemblik-based Dutch shipyard that has a great reputation for building luxury cruising sailboats for long-term cruising.
The family-run shipyard has been building solid luxury sailing boats for more than 60 years and over the years the charm of these boats has remained unique despite the use of modern materials and technologies.
The distinctive elements that make these boats exclusive is that they are made with refined elegance and set up with care, precision and perfectionism at the highest levels through meticulous craftsmanship without neglecting anything, combining traditional skills with modern innovations.
All this to satisfy the most demanding customers, those who appreciate the design, the quality of the details, the research of materials, the contours, the finishes and the solidity of the entire boat and the functioning of every single element used.
However the main feature of Contest Yachts is that the boats can be fully customized because they are designed in a semi-custom way. That is, the shipyard offers the owner the opportunity to customize both the interiors through a complete range of different cabin plans to best meet their needs and tastes, and the deck according to their preferences and sailing aspirations, but always with very high quality levels that distinguish the skipyard. In addition, all Contest yachts are built to Lloyd’s supervisory standards and certification.
Contest Yachts currently builds boats in the 42-85ft (13-26m) range. Its latest creation, the new Contest 55CS a 55ft (17m) long boat recently won the “European Yacht of the Year 2021” award in “Luxury Cruiser” category, the best 2021 sailboat in the luxury cruise sector.
It is called the new Contest55CS due to the continuity with the old Contest 55, whose project dates back more than twenty years ago and has now been re-proposed in line with the needs and preferences recently expressed by the nautical world.
Obviously it was made with a more advanced technology that is updated more and more with the passage of time.
The hull design has been redesigned with more modern lines with better hydrodynamic properties and with more space on deck and in the cabins but always preserving its classic style.
Constantly in search of the maximum possible structural optimizations, the hull, as for all Contest yachts, was built according to Lloyd’s supervisory standards and certification, with a careful use of carbon fibers and using the most advanced manufacturing techniques to make the lightest and most resistant the boat in order to obtain better performance.
Victory as the best luxury sailing yacht 2021 was to be expected after the great success at its presentation at the Dusseldorf boat show in January 2020.
A niche sector those of luxury sailing boats that knows no crisis and the triumph of the new Contest 55CS is tangible proof. The owners immediately rushed to book this boat for which the shipyard is already committed to deliveries for the whole of 2021 despite the initial price being around 1.7 million euros plus VAT.
Contest 55CS is a luxury sailing yacht where refined elegance is perfectly integrated with excellent functionality.
Suitable for long crossings as well as for pleasure outings, it is safe, comfortable, easy to manage even without a crew.
The spaces and volumes have been cleverly distributed both on deck and for the interiors, all to better enjoy the wonders of the sea.
This boat was born from the close collaboration of the Dutch shipyard with the judel / vrolijk & co yacht design studio, one of the most famous in the world, which designed the exterior and naval architecture, while the interiors were designed by the Dutch designer studio Wetzels Brown Partners. .
The boat is overall 17 m (55.77 ft) long; Length including bowsprit 18.10 m (59.38 ft); Waterline length 15.83 m (51.94 ft); Maximum width 5.02 m (16.47 ft); Displacement 24,960 kg (55,027 lbs); Standard keel draft 2.55 m (8.37 ft); Mast height above waterline 24.82 m (81.43 ft); Main sail 92.75 sqm (1.087ft2); Genoa 106% 71sqm (767ft2); Fuel tank 850 liters (224 gallons) Water tank 725 liters (191 gallons); Engine, Volvo Penta 150hp (110kW)
The deck layout, all covered in teak, has been developed to experience the sea in complete safety in the open area when sailing, while when you are stationary at anchor it is possible to equip spacious relaxation areas both on the foredeck and on the main deck. stern by choosing which part of the area to cover and shade.
The deck is characterized by an unobtrusive deckhouse which is part of the large cockpit floor divided into two parts: the relaxation area amidships and the management area further aft.
The relaxation area of the cockpit protected by a very high protection is a really comfortable area set up with two modern ergonomic padded “L” benches facing each other with a central table thus creating a pleasant oval-shaped seating area where you can have lunch outside. ‘open with a convenient built-in fridge hidden under the table top.
In the second part of the cockpit farther aft, the two twin control wheels with their seats with a unique and particular design are installed on two columns, together with the navigation control instrumentation, behind there is a large aft space where to equip a comfortable relaxation area.
All the maneuvering organs to handling are hidden and converge in the vicinity of the two twin wheels and f ra the two wheels is positioned the main automatic winch to make it very simple adjustment maneuvers on the entire sail plan.
Contest 55CS has a vocation for long cruises and has been set up with an important sail plan that is excellent for handling and performance with a total area of over 160 square meters with 92,754 square meters of mainsail and 71 square meters of jib. In addition, a self-tacking jib has been fitted to ensure optimal handling and ease of maneuver.
However, to always guarantee navigation, even without a sail, it was equipped with a Volvo Penta 150 hp engine.
The transom ends with a very useful bathing platform which, when it is lowered hydraulically on command, makes a large stowage space accessible, where you can store many things such as a tender up to 3 meters in length.
The passage from the cockpit to the wide gangway is very easy and without any obstacles it is possible to walk up to the bow using, if necessary, the help of a long handrail.
The bow consists of a large space with hatches flush with the floor that do not create any problems when walking. This whole area with the anchor lowered can be used and equipped as you wish to spend most of the day outdoors and rest after enjoying a swim in close contact with the sun and the sea. On the extreme tip we find a sail locker equipped with a ladder and another locker for the anchor and chains and a bowsprit.
However, the real and great feature of this boat is that during the day all the areas below deck are always full of natural light thanks to a new approach in the design of the deck hatches and in the choice of the number and size of the hull windows.
For this reason, all environments are always able to offer an excellent level of comfort that make life on board as pleasant as possible “a real home away from home”, as the Dutch yard defines this boat.
There are no crew quarters because being a safe, comfortable, fast and above all easy to maneuver yacht this “blue water cruiser” is a cruising yacht intended to be managed by a couple of people or by a family or friends in any weather conditions.
Like all Contest boats, the 55CS has also been built with a semi-custom formula, therefore with a very flexible design and can be customized to the point that if the owner is a highly experienced navigator, he can have the boat of his dreams come true.
In any case, a layout for the interiors already created includes three cabins and two bathrooms, a living room and a kitchen. Precisely two cabins and a bathroom in the bow and the other owner’s cabin with a bathroom aft.
The descent below deck takes place via a staircase that is accessed from a hatch located aft of the mast.
For those looking at the interiors for the first time, the thing that stands out is the quality of the fittings and the style of the furnishings, a classic modern combination, a perfect harmony between the class and elegance of the traditional furnishings, to the simpler lines of the modern style.
The high and bright semi-raised living room, thanks to the large windows, is the first room of the interior that we find near the entrance that occupies the entire width of the beam that offers a lot of freedom of movement and a lot of very comfortable space able to accommodate numerous guests .
On the right side we find a refined chart table with a splendid seat and the navigation and system control system with two displays, one of which, in addition to replicating the map, can also act as a 50-inch television.
Continuing on the same side we find a first L-shaped sofa with an extendable and height-adjustable central table.
On the opposite left side we have another L-shaped sofa.
Continuing towards the bow on the right we have a first cabin furnished with a queen size bed but which could also be set up with bunk beds using the height of the cabin, while on the opposite side there is a first bathroom with a very teak floor. high with separate shower, the other cabin, larger than the previous one, is located forward furnished with a double bed.
Between the central salon and the aft owner’s cabin there is a fully equipped galley complete with everything. The part with stove and oven and fridge various accessories develops along the left side on the opposite side is the sink.
The kitchen can be used in any condition because it is equipped with adequate ventilation, lighting and natural light thanks to a large rectangular window that illuminates the whole environment during the day and lets in fresh air directly from the outside.
Continuing aft we find the owner’s cabin with bathroom and separate shower. The master cabin is a magnificent suite set up with luxury and elegance with large side windows and sea views thanks to a large aft window that offers an excellent sight at any berth with the bathing platform lowered, a real value that no owner will be able to renounce.
The cabin is furnished with a king size bed that is larger than the classic double bed, which guarantees the comfort and space worthy of a king.
All cabins on board have minimum noise levels and are finely furnished with elegant and accommodating wardrobes and furniture capable of stowing numerous objects and personal effects.
There is not only aesthetics in the Contest 55CS the shipyard has done everything to demonstrate how aesthetics and functionality can be perfectly combined to guarantee always, or go around the world, or stay still at anchor and at the dock , the right space and best comfort.