At just over 50 feet long and with a beam of nearly 26 feet, the Catana 50 is a big boat, and one that the BOTY judges found to be the best built and most stylish of this year's fleet of cruising catamarans, earning it the title of Best Cruising Multihull. That said, they also noted that it was a boat that could test the mettle of a shorthanded crew or a singlehander.
Despite the powerful forces at work on its rig and the complexity of its systems, judge Ralph Naranjo summed up his colleagues' reasoning when he noted that with his wife, children, and grandchildren aboard as crew, the family could settle in for a long, fast cruise. The Catana is clearly a boat that's built for going places.
A solent rig gives the crew a choice of a self-tending jib or a screecher, with its sheets led to winches near each wheel. All other control lines lead to a centerline winch located aft in the cockpit; the winch can be operated via a remote button at either of the twin wheels.
Under way with the staysail flying, the boat is easily tacked, and once on course, the Catana tracks straight through wind and waves.
Inside the saloon, bright woodwork is accented by polished stainless-steel cabinetry at the nav station. The galley has good fiddles-a rarity on a multihull-for cooking and living offshore, and below, spacious heads and showers in each of the cabins can easily accommodate even the biggest of crewmembers.
Though the initial price tag was well on the high end of the boats under consideration-$1.4 million-judges noted that the company has a reputation for building boats that hold their value, making the 50 a sound bet for an owner who understands the powerfully bred cat that he or she is buying. To see more catamerans from Catana, click here.