Luxury marque Belize has just announced the latest in its line of classically-styled motor yachts, the Belize 66.
The new model builds on the heritage, first unveiled in 2011, of a luxury motoryacht that evokes the styles of a bygone era of yachting, of gleaming hand-crafted interiors and, most importantly, of individuality.
The original Belize 54 quickly attracted owners who, after many years of boating, knew exactly what they wanted and had found a marque and a team who could help them create their ultimate motoryacht.
Belize co-founder and Riviera CEO Wes Moxey said: "The marque was born of the desire to work with clients to create a distinctive yacht and we embraced their demands for the highest quality craftsmanship."
Today, 25 Belize 54s are cruising international waters, from the coral reefs of Queensland to the Great Lakes and New England regions of the United States where style and tradition are part of the yachting bloodline. Owners are supported by the professional Riviera worldwide dealership and services network.
Now the Belize marque has taken the concept of a semi-custom motoryacht to a new level with the Belize 66, a vessel that delivers a new sense of space, comfort and luxury and offers an unmatched level of customisation and bespoke elements.
Available in sedan or daybridge models, the Belize 66 offers three or four cabins with a large aft utility room or optional crew quarters.
Power is delivered for this new motoryacht by Volvo Penta IPS.
"We have been able to include more of everything a client could want in the 66 than any equivalent boat in the world," said Mr Moxey.
With a wide range of options already built into the boat's design, each owner is assured of selecting an individual configuration that will exactly match their boating and personal lifestyles.
Mr Moxey said he and designer Stephen Ford worked for two years on concepts before extensive consultation with current Belize 54 owners.
"Many of the design elements in the new Belize 66 have been drawn from our owners who now want something larger and more comprehensive," he said.
The range of options begins with the overall layout. Clients may select a single-level lifestyle sedan or a daybridge with classic bimini top or hardtop. The hardtop includes a retractable awning sunroof.
"The development of Belize has always been driven by discerning and highly experienced clients who know exactly what they need to make their boating experience perfect," he said.
"The quality and uniqueness of the completed yacht is a direct reflection of the many additional man-hours that are invested into every Belize we deliver to clients around the world."
From the moment of arrival on board - via side bulwark doors or the transom gates - the Belize 66 speaks of luxury and Australian practicality at every level. The teak-laid swim platform is built in two section.
Three quarters of the platform is fully submersible to assist in tender launch and retrieval while a smaller section remains fixed. The garage under the cockpit holds a Brig 330 or Palm Beach tender.
Step up through the transom gates to the teak-laid cockpit. The starboard fore quarter features a dinette and L-shape seating while owners may choose where to place the barbecue; across the transom with a lounge at the port fore quarter - or vice versa. A third option for daybridge owners is to locate the barbecue on the bridge.
A watertight hatch is hidden under the cockpit lounge. This lifts to reveal access to a space forward of the full head-height engine room that can be configured for almost any purpose: crew quarters, massive storage for water toys or even a walk-in wardrobe to the master stateroom.
Walk-around decks lead forward to a massive sundeck where, with the Belize 66 at anchor, sun-lovers will gravitate to the foredeck with its large sunken U-shape lounge and a central dinette table that can be lowered to create - with an infill - a massive day bed. Lounge backrests are stored in lockers on either side and an insulated cold locker for drinks is forward. The entire area can be sheltered from the sun by a fold-up canopy.
Owners selecting the daybridge layout have the choice of the fabric bimini top that covers the helm and forward lounges while a hardtop option provides cover for almost the entire space. A staircase leads up from the saloon, opening to the helm with skipper and companion chair, a wide dashboard and sports wheel. A viewing lounge is set along the starboard side and, further aft, an L-shaped lounge surrounds a timber dinette. Outdoor chefs will love the food preparation space to port with its large barbecue, sink and long benchtop with fridge and plenty of storage under. There is even more storage available aft of the dinette.
Back in the cockpit, the saloon bulkhead is ship-like and all stainless steel with a large awning window linking this outdoor space with the galley while a sliding glass door provides entry to the saloon.
Stepping inside to the massive saloon area, a large and efficient U-shape galley with stone benchtop lies to starboard with fridges, freezers and a pantry opposite.
Moving forward and one step up from the galley is the dinette to starboard with a free-standing lounge or armchair opposite. The chair can be moved across the space to add to dinette seating. Owners will individualise this entire space with a select choice of fabrics and bespoke finishes.
A pantograph door opposite the dinette takes guests out to the port walk-around deck.
The lower helm area will reflect the owner's life and boating style. In the daybridge model, those who love alfresco cruising will probably select the optional minimalist helm layout, opting for a large L-shape lounge and coffee table on the port side and a single-seat helm to starboard for those days when the weather dictates under-cover control. For sedan owners and those boating in cool climates, a more expansive helm is offered featuring a central leather helm chair facing a sports wheel and expansive dashboard with comprehensive navigation systems and controls. Guests are accommodated with a companion seat on the starboard side and a viewing lounge to port.
A massive curved glass windscreen wraps around the helm.
A staircase forward of the helm leads to the accommodation companionway, replete with timber-panelled walls and fine fabrics. Here, owners will further reflect their boating lifestyle; family living, entertaining or couple cruising, perhaps, in three or four cabins with the option of additional crew quarters.
All cabins are fully carpeted. Wardrobes and storage lockers are cedar-lined.
The four-cabin configuration includes a guest stateroom forward with twin wardrobes and en-suite bathroom, bunk cabin to starboard and twin cabin to port. The beds in this cabin can slide together to create a comfortable double bed. The twin and bunk cabins share a bathroom and a stacked clothes washer and dryer are in a companionway cabinet forward of the bunk cabin.
The Master Stateroom amidships includes a bathroom on the starboard side and large twin wardrobes.
The three-cabin option provides for a Grand Presidential suite amidships with full-beam master stateroom and a bathroom in the starboard fore quarter that offers not simply twin vanities but a bidet option. The Stateroom is fitted with large twin wardrobes and there is the option for a massive walk-in wardrobe aft of the stateroom in place of a storage space or crew quarters.
Power for the new Belize 66 comes from the proven Volvo Penta IPS 30 pod drive system, delivering outstanding performance, whisper-quiet ride and industry-leading fuel efficiency. It includes Volvo Penta's Station Hold and joystick control for fingertip manoeuvrability.
The Belize 66 is now in build with the first boat - a sedan - scheduled for delivery to its owner in the United States in mid-2018. Two more yachts have already been ordered, including a hardtop daybridge model for a client in Australia.