By Tom Thompson
Hargrave 94: Sea Trial
Hargrave 94: Custom yacht offers endless upscale comfort.
While many luxury motoryacht builders claim to “customize,” the fact is, most “custom” changes are only cosmetic. However, the boats from Hargrave Custom Yachts truly live up to the company’s name.
Hargrave gives buyers a wide range of choices, from interior decor to deck layout. The reason for this may lie in the fact that 40 years ago, Hargrave began as a design firm. Building yachts grew out of that, as a natural progression.
Each vessel that comes from the Hargrave yards is as unique as its owner. A case in point is the Hargrave 94 Capri Skylounge Motoryacht we tested for this month’s sea trial.
Carissima is the first of Hargrave’s 94-foot Capri line, a tri-deck design with an enclosed bridge. At 94 feet, 8 inches in overall length and with a 20-foot beam, Carissima’s predominant feature is its spaciousness. Everything on board is done well, because there is room to do it without compromise.
The main deck has three distinct living areas, plus space for sitting and sunning on the foredeck. The aft deck is completely covered and can be fitted with a dining table to seat 10, as on Carissima.
Moving forward, the saloon takes up approximately one third of the main deck. At the center is a conversation area with facing three-place settees and a pair of chairs. A low cabinet forward of the grouping conceals a Sony 42-inch plasma screen television. What’s remarkable is that wherever you are in the saloon, there’s an open, spacious feeling.
Forward and to port of the conversation area is a dining area that seats six. In the aft port corner, you’ll find a bar with four stools. Nearby is an open spiral staircase that provides access to the decks above and below. It’s just abaft a powder room-style day head.
Storage cabinets are placed along the bulkheads, under the windows on each side. All of the cabinetry is crafted of high-gloss cherry, with lacewood accents.
Carissima’s gourmet galley is as complete as you can find afloat. The abundant counterspace includes a convenient center island. There is a side-by-side upright refrigerator/freezer, as well as two undercounter drawer-type units.
The appliance lineup includes a cooktop, a microwave oven, a dishwasher and a trash compactor. There’s even an undercounter wine cooler.
To top it off, this is an “eat-in” galley. U-shaped lounge seating, forward, comfortably accommodates up to six adults, who can either enjoy watching the chef’s activities or take in a panoramic view of the water.
The lower deck of the Hargrave 94 can be configured to suit your own personal needs, with your choice of stateroom layouts. Our test boat, Carissima, provides four staterooms amidships and two more forward, for crew. Total sleeping accommodations include berths for up to 14 adults — without even opening a convertible settee.
Because of the abundant space aboard, each stateroom on Carissima has its own head and walk-in hanging locker.
The full-beam master stateroom provides his and hers lavatories, separated by a large shower. A settee is to starboard and a dressing area with vanity is to port. The two center staterooms each provide twin berths, along with a fold-down bunk.
The crew quarters, located in the forward part of the lower deck, is entered from the galley area. It includes a seating and dining area, along with two staterooms and a shared head.
Yacht designer J.B. Hargrave, the company’s founder, knew the importance of keeping a crew comfortable and content. That tradition continues in all Hargrave designs.
View From the Top
Carissima has one of the largest upper decks I’ve seen on a motoryacht, even for a boat of this size. Hargrave’s designers allowed for additional outdoor entertainment space on the upper deck. Storage for two personal watercraft and an inflatable tender notwithstanding, there’s room aft for U-shaped lounge seating around a table and a barbecue grill on the boat deck.
The 94′s skylounge is its crowning glory. It provides a spectacular view while under way and offers spacious comfort and convenient amenities.
Carissima has an L-shaped lounge on the skylounge’s port side, with a refreshment bar just forward of it. To starboard, there’s a comfortable single lounge chair with an ottoman for the owner.
The centerline captain’s chair faces an impressive array of electronics and controls at the helm. Carissima is outfitted with the latest Raymarine navigation electronics, including radar, a chart plotter, GPS and a VHF radio.
A pair of Samsung 17-inch color LCD monitors dominates the helm console. In conjunction with an onboard Concord computer, these monitors display Raymarine’s Raytech navigation software, along with engine and system monitoring information. What’s more, they double as television receivers, to keep skylounge guests entertained on long passages.
Carissima is powered by a pair of 1,400 hp Caterpillar 3412 diesels, the largest engine package Hargrave offers. Hargrave makes no claims of building the fastest yacht in its class; however, it provides a supremely comfortable and stable ride.
We tested this 94-footer off Ft. Lauderdale, Florida on a late summer day. There was enough of a chop during our sea trial to get a feel for how this boat would handle in rough water.
Straight-line tracking was excellent, as was turn stability. Going through a figure eight, there was no heeling, even when the wheel was hard over.
This nimble Hargrave could turn in a circle less than two boat lengths’ diameter. Of course, when the going gets rough, you can always turn on the Naiad stabilizers to smooth out the ride.
The 3412 Cats power Carissima to a top speed of just over 22 knots. Our test boat carried 3,360 gallons of fuel — an optional 1,160 gallons above the standard tankage. At an economical 14-knot cruise speed, you can travel over 1,000 nautical miles before needing to refuel.
While under way, the sound level inside the skylounge was so quiet, the engines were practically unnoticeable. We had to go belowdecks to the master stateroom, which is located just forward of the engine room, before we could even hear any machinery sounds.
With a motoryacht like the Hargrave 94, the possibilities are endless. Michael Joyce, president of Hargrave Custom Yachts, summed it up well when he told us, “This boat is a good example of our capability. Other builders use words like ?custom boat’ and what they really mean is they’ll change the carpets or drapes and move some furniture around.”
Joyce explained that if a customer wants to alter the dimensions or deck plans, Hargrave can handle it.
“We can make changes. That’s our niche in the market.”
Hargrave 94 Specifications
|Dry weight||150,000 pounds|
|Fuel capacity||3,200 gallons|
|Water capacity||600 gallons|
|Sleeps||10 plus 4-person crew|
|Propellers||41.5″ x 40″ 4-blade Faster|
|Base price||$4.2 million|
|Top speed||22.5 knots|
|Miles per gallon 1400 rpm||0.43 (statute miles)|
|Range at 14-knot cruising speed||1023 nautical miles|
Options on Test Boat
Two 32 kw Northern Lights auxiliary generators; Glendinning Cablemaster; chilled water system air conditioning; increased freshwater capacity; increased fuel capacity; factory installed Raymarine electronics package; Naiad stabilizer system.
Fiberglass hull; sides and deck are divinycell cored.
For More Information
Hargrave Custom Yachts
Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.