Jeremy McGeary reviews the Salona 37 for the 2007 Cruising World Sailboat Show.
Following the Salona 45 to the U.S. market, the Croatian-built Salona 37 provides a meeting place for racing and performance-cruising sailors. Sailing World recognized its versatility by nominating it for its more performance-oriented BOTY contest. This model is likely to be exciting to sail, but it perhaps would challenge a singlehander.
On deck, it's laid out for racing around the buoys, with mainsheet and traveler forward of the helm and the compass above the companionway. It's also well prepared for going around boisterous headlands, with a molded-in recess for a stowable dodger and a conduit for control lines to run tidily beneath it. Clean superstructure lines and shrouds mounted well inboard ensure a forward deck free of obstructions.
Although it may need frequent traveler adjustment in gusty conditions, we found that the Salona 37's speed was excellent: We beam-reached at 3.5 knots in about 5 knots of true wind and made 6.1 knots closehauled in less than 10 knots. Powering, it was equally well behaved, maxing at 7.7 knots and cruising at 6.7 knots at a quiet 3,000 rpm.
Belowdecks, nicely finished joiner work of simple, crisp design evokes a pleasant ambience. The attractive and practical arrangement places a large V-berth cabin forward, the head and second cabin aft, and the galley opposite the nav desk at the base of the companionway. The saloon settees make fine sea berths and, for overnight racing, can be supplemented by hinging up their back cushions to make upper bunks for the crew.
Notable structural features are the watertight bulkhead forward of the rudder and the stainless-steel grid bonded into the hull to distribute the loads from the mast step, chainplates, and keel.
Salona 37 Specs
LOA: 37' 0"
LWL: 32' 8"
Beam: 11' 10"
Draft (shallow): 5' 9"
Sail Area: 686 sq. ft.
Displacement: 13,007 lb.
Water: 53 gal.
Fuel: 40 gal.
Engine: 30-hp. Yanmar
Designer: J&J Yacht Design
Salona Yachts North America, (410) 878-6463, www.salonayachts.com