The latest serious offshore cruising yacht, Hallberg Rassy 44, from this premium Scandinavian yard marks a major change in the history of this long-running company. Like all other recent models, the design by German Frers is immediately recognisable as a Hallberg Rassy thanks to the broad blue cove line, centre cockpit, fixed windscreen and teak decks, but there are some important new developments that set this yacht well apart from its predecessors.
The most obvious of these is the adoption of twin rudders. This is not simply a nod to fashion, as it allows for the maximum beam of the boat to be brought further aft, without compromising handling. Combined with less topsides flare and a more plumb bow this helps increase interior volume by around 20 per cent compared to the HR43 that this model replaces.
The increase in space is most noticeable in the impressive owner’s suite aft. There’s also a smaller forward double guest cabin and a further two bunk berths. The second heads compartment is on the port side forward of the main bulkhead and has provision for fitting a washer dryer. The saloon has a conventional layout with an L-shaped settee to port and straight settee to starboard. Natural light is supplied via large overhead hatches, hull windows and coach roof ports.
On deck, the cockpit is smaller than that of many contemporary designs, but offers a fantastic level of security and protection at sea. To facilitate deck work in tough conditions the side decks are commendably wide and there’s a deep bulwark that adds to a feeling of security on deck. The fold-down transom bathing platform is of a good size and will also assist with safely boarding from a dinghy.
From a safety perspective, the design changes adopted for this boat mean it can be expected to handle rough seas like a larger yacht. In addition, the steering systems have been configured so that the wheels are connected to one rudder stock and the pilot to the other. This means that a failure of either system will not result in a complete steering failure.
- Hull length 13.68m
- Waterline length 12.88m
- Beam 4.2m
- Draught 2.1m
- Displacement 13,300kg
- Ballast 5,300kg
- Sail area 109.6sq m