Best Charter Boat

One sailboat stands out above the rest as the ideal charter yacht to take on a vacation.

Bringing Friends and Family

When the BOTY judging panel sat down to deliberate on which catamaran would rise to the top as the year’s Best Multihull, they were also launching a referendum on which would be the ideal yacht to take on a charter vacation — for in 2016, as Tim Murphy pointed out, the cats and chartering were closely linked.

“With the catamarans, the charter influence was very strong,” he said. “Every one of the five builders, see Best Multihull Cruisers, is closely aligned with a charter company, and all of their boats are offered in private owner versions and in dedicated charter versions, some of which can go directly into a charter management program from the moment you buy them.”

True, some of the larger monohulls will also be used for charter service. But after further consideration, the panel’s choice was clear: The ­Fountaine Pajot Ipanema 58 is 2016’s Best Charter Boat.


As a pure party platform, with spacious accommodations and multiple levels and spaces for lounging and relaxing — the flybridge, the aft cockpit, the forward sun decks — the 58-foot Ipanema is unparalleled. There’s plenty of room to gather the crowd for fun and games, or to retreat elsewhere for a little private time. And that fact is underscored by the layout.

“The interior is very nice, and the six-cabin, six-head layout means it could be used for crewed charters or a bareboat,” said Murphy. “And the two aft cabins in the model we sailed had big, walk-around, queen-size berths. Those were luxurious.”

“Fountaine Pajot is also speaking to the modern generation with the digital switching touch-screen display, and yet there’s a full analog backup as well,” said Ed Sherman. “Everyone’s got an iPad or similar device, and builders are noticing technology like that, where you can check charging systems and everything from one display. It’s what people want. So Fountaine Pajot has thought about reliability and backed it up with good machinery. I really like some of the innovative things they’re doing with systems so you can keep the party rolling, even in less than ideal conditions.”


“You could have a great vacation on the Ipanema,” said Alvah Simon. “It’s got the space, the accouterments, the big social areas and galley, and on the davits they’ve also included a kayak or surfboard rack. What else can I say? If you take one for a charter, you know what you’re there for.”

For more information on the Ipanema 58, visit the Fountaine Pajot website.
Check out the full specifications of all the nominees and winners here.
Find out the winner of the Best Value Cruiser.
The judging panel felt that all five nominees in the Multihull Cruiser class, as well as the big monohulls from Beneteau and Jeanneau, would make fine charter platforms. But of all the boats they considered, they felt the Fountaine Pajot Ipanema 58 was the best tool for the serious job of kicking back. Billy Black
Not only did it sail well, but it also had room galore below providing spacious accommodations and comfortable living. Billy Black