Pictures at an Exhibition: The Paris Boat Show

Last week's Salon Nautique International de Paris—better known to English-speaking sailors as the Paris Boat Show, the 2011 edition of which ran from December 3-11—was once again an eclectic gathering of sailors, gear, and yachts with a decidedly French flair. CW senior editor Herb McCormick was there, snapping photos of the action (and video of Beneteau's presentation with a renowned sand artist). For vague reasons, he's nam

December 15, 2011


On the first Saturday of the show, a rainy day in Paris, the sailing venue (there are are four separate halls for gear, sailboats, powerboats, and even spas) was packed with visitors.


Not all of the new boats were mega-monohulls. The Rackam 26, built by Tregor Composites and marketed by Forum Marine—who also import the new Mystery 35 sloop to the U.S.—is a nifty 26-foot pocket rocket with basic cruising accommodations.


The latest yacht from Amel, their ketch-rigged 55-footer, is another Racoupeau design. Note the powerful externally mounted bow thruster.


The aluminum Allures 45, with twin rudders and a centerboard, is also from the board of Olivier Racoupeau. With the centerboard raised, it’s even beach-able!


All of the major French builders, like Lagoon, have elaborate displays with offices, conference rooms, and bars for business and hospitality. Lagoon didn’t have all of their models on display…unless you count this showcase of models at the entrance to their “showroom.” The popular French catamaran builder will have four boats in the water during February’s Miami Boat Show.


The new Beneteau Sense 55 made its debut in Paris. The main saloon boasts clean, contemporary designs.


The forward cabin of the Beneteau Sense 55.


Jeanneau had a full array of new models available for inspection, including one of Cruising World’s recently crowned Boat of the Year winners, the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 379.


CW‘s advertising director, Ted Ruegg, posed beside the twin wheels of another impressive, interesting 50-plus-footer that debuted in Paris, the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 509.


I’m a sucker for sweet layouts in smaller cruising boats, and though the Feeling 32 is not a new boat, I found the maple interior quite fetching. The central table also serves as the centerboard trunk.


Perhaps the hottest current naval architect in France—and perhaps the planet—is Olivier Racoupeau, whose new offerings for Beneteau, Jeanneau, and Amel were all launched in Paris, as was the new Sanya 57 for Fountaine-Pajot, aboard which this shot was taken.


Regular CW contributor Jimmy Cornell was also on hand, promoting his new volume of custom pilot charts for long-distance passage planning. See February’s issue of the magazine for a full review and special introductory offer.


Only in Paris: En route to the show, CW ad director clicked this shot of a billboard for the French “Groupama” effort in the current Volvo Ocean Race…complete with a full-size replica of the boat!

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