Hylas 56: A Good Thing Made Better
Using the popular 54 as a starting point, Hylas ups the comfort factor for its 56.
To reach the master bedroom aft, one passes through a well-laid-out and seakindly in-line galley with the volume of storage, refrigeration, and freezer space you’d expect on a long-legged voyager. There’s lots of Corian counter space, and a deep, stainless-steel double sink is located on the center line behind the companionway, where it will function well at sea.
I say “master bedroom” because to call the area aft of the engine room a “cabin” would be to do it a disservice. The centerline queen berth is flanked by seating and lots of storage, and there’s an en suite head complete with washing machine and stall shower.
But enough about creature comforts. With its Doyle carbon-fiber sails unfurled, the boat heeled only slightly as we sailed closehauled at a little better than 4 knots in 8 to 10 knots apparent, and we tacked through 110 degrees. When we cracked off on a reach, our speed rose to a little better than 5 knots in about 12 apparent. If only Aeolus had been more generous.
Under power, the 150-horsepower Yanmar (subsequent boats will have a Volkswagen engine) was quiet on the ears at 3,000 rpm, pushing us along at about 8.2 knots; with the throttle at 4,000 rpm, we did a knot better. When we were under way, I found the Mamba steering to be smooth and responsive. Backing under power, the boat seemed sluggish when trying to turn, but then again, with the bow thruster, this probably wouldn’t be an issue, and I understand that a new propeller was on order.
Overall, my afternoon sail aboard the Hylas was sort of like giving a thirsty man just a sip of water. The occasional slight gust hinted that this is a boat you’d like to be on when the conditions are blustery and there are miles to be ticked off. In fact, when I spoke with Maher Elmasri, the owner of the yet-to-be-built hull number three who was part of the delivery crew that brought the Hylas we sailed to Newport, he reported that when they were offshore in 20-plus knots, the boat—all 50,200 pounds of it—slid through the waves at 9 knots and better. I’d liked to have been there.
Mark Pillsbury is the editor of CW.
LOA 55’ 6” (16.92 m.)
LWL 51’ 0” (15.54 m.)
Beam 15’ 9” (4.8 m.)
Draft (shoal/deep) 6’ 2”/7’ 4” (1.93/2.24 m.)
Sail Area (100%) 1,446 sq. ft. (134.3 sq. m.)
Ballast 20,020 lb. (9,988 kg.)
Displacement 50,200 lb. (22,771 kg.)
SA/D (100%) 17.0
Water 500 gal. (1,893 l.)
Fuel 555 gal. (2,101 l.)
Holding 54 gal. (204 l.)
Mast Height 76’ 0” (23.16 m.)
Engine 150-hp. Yanmar
Designer Germán Frers
Price (as sailed) $1,100,000