Astonishing Accommodations!

This new entry to the North American motoryacht market packs an impressive amount of living space into a versatile layout.

Although the Prestige 500S is new for 2012, I first had a first look in Florida in 2011, and I stepped off with a sense of amazement, anxious to stand back and see the whole boat from a distance to figure out where all the space came from.

This is a sedan (or coupe) design that is actually under 50’ (49’ 1” overall). Yet the designers found room for a full-beam master stateroom with standing headroom that has a private ensuite head including a separate shower stall; a guest stateroom forward; a midships double cabin; a second full head; a very spacious salon; a galley on the main level; a generous cockpit and even a tender garage!

With twin Volvo IPS 600 pod drive engines, the Prestige 500S runs to 34 MPH and accelerates with determination, too.

At their press briefing in Miami in February 2012, Jean-Paul Chapeleau, directeur general for Prestige, told us that their goal was to become one of the world’s most recognized yacht brands. The company, part of the giant Groupe Beneteau organization, offers a whole line of new yachts from their 350 model to their 60-footer, most in both sedan and flying bridge versions. A 70-footer was to debut at Cannes and their goal is to be a central player in the North American market.

We travelled to Performance Marine in Saint-Paul-de-l'Île-aux-Noix, south of Montréal on the Richilieu River leading to Lake Champlain. It is a gorgeous area, great for boating and only a short drive from downtown Montréal.

The Prestige 500S is an ideal design for this area. It can be a high-speed getaway boat for a weekday escape after work or a floating cottage on weekends, and has the size and power to handle the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence or a run down the Intracoastal Waterway to the Caribbean in winter.

Approaching the Prestige 500S for the first time, you notice the sedan style is lower from the waterline than a flying bridge boat would be (although Prestige does offer a flying bridge version) and the sedan has a single interior helm.

You can simply walk aboard the boat, unlock the glass aft bulkhead door, cast off the lines and take off, without fiddling with canvas and without much regard to the weather. Press a few buttons and the cabin roof slides open electrically, the side glass lowers and, with the aft bulkhead open, it’s almost like a huge open boat. But if it’s rainy, keep it closed up and run the massive windshield wipers. If it’s too hot, run the air conditioning in the windshield defroster vents. Small effort – big rewards.

We like a boat with usable side decks and Prestige has big rails with lifelines and beefy cabin-side handholds. Both side decks are a usable size but the boat is asymmetrical with a comfortably wider deck on the port side. You can securely head forward to the big sun lounge on the bow. This includes a retractable sun awning and adjustable backrests. The 500S also features a big Delta anchor, a Lewmar windlass and a generous anchor locker.

At night, the steps are illuminated for safety. Lights on the cabin overhang also illuminate the cockpit, where a huge bench seat with a high-low teak table provides a delightful outdoor dining area or can be dropped down to convert this into an enormous sun lounge. At the touch of a button, all that lifts to reveal the tender garage that lies below the cockpit but above the engine bay! A great use of space...

Our test boat had glorious and comfortable teak flooring. A great touch from this sailboat builder are the line boxes on the port and starboard sides to keep things neat and tidy. A warping winch is included as well, enabling you to bring the lines in or let them out in response to tidal changes in water level. Three floor sections here lift for storage access and also for port and starboard-side engine access.

From the cockpit, slide the glass bulkhead open. As you enter, the expanse of side glass catches your eye. This boat has a very bright interior, enhanced by the use of white carpeting, white upholstery and white galley counters, yet I felt it was still comfortable in bright sun thanks to the mirrored side glass – very cool! The glass is also a big help with the air-conditioning load. The test boat had a 69,000-BTU system.

The salon has a portside bench with seating for six or more, but there’s no storage under the seats; instead they provide headroom in the master stateroom below. The dining table has leaves with slide-out supports.

The galley is down one step and I’m not sure why. However, it’s a really nice arrangement with L-shaped counter areas, filler sections to give lots of unobstructed counter space for food prep and serving, and the attractive white counter surfaces. The test boat was fitted with a built-in Vitrifrigo refrigerator with freezer, a Cuisinart convection microwave and a Danby dishwasher! We really appreciate the Whirlpool range hood.

We also liked the serving island that incorporates storage inside, including a trash locker, cutlery drawer and bin for pots and pans. It struck us as a good galley overall – and we love the location right against the aft bulkhead with easy access to the cockpit and swim platform for dining and entertaining. By the bulkhead door is the electrical panel and under that is a locker and a pullout bottle rack and glasses rack.

Right there to starboard is the private stairway to one of the most impressive features on the prestige 500S, the full-beam master stateroom. Accommodation like this on a 50-footer is quite amazing to find! There are huge side glass areas in the hull as well as opening portholes port and starboard to make this feel like an above-decks cabin. It’s not just full-beam but it has six feet of standing height, with a 160-by-200-cm king-size bed. There are bedside tables, a combination desk/makeup table on the port side, a flat-screen TV mounted on the bulkhead, hanging locker, starboard-side locker for clothes, plus two more bins under the bed.

The ensuite master head is spacious and nicely equipped but it’s broken up into three different floor levels! The MSD is mounted highest and we have to observe that it truly is a throne! There is lots more storage for towels and cosmetics, mirrors for shaving and makeup, and a vessel-type sink as well as a fully enclosed shower stall.

The guest stateroom in the forward vee has a makeup table, two lockers, big side glass hull panels with opening ports and remote audio controls. You can make up this berth as either a double or two singles so it’s very versatile. This space has a separate entrance to the day head which is equipped with a vessel sink, big mirrors, opening ports and folding shower enclosure in a clear acrylic.

The midships stateroom is still big enough to be comfortable and is equipped with two singles that can be filled in for a queen berth, a big locker and opening portholes as well as air conditioning. It’s a great space for kids, guests or crew.

We can’t say much about the performance and seakeeping qualities of the 500S – the water was millpond flat for our test and we were in a sheltered area. Still, the boat accelerates strongly and quickly reaches top speed with impressive smoothness. The twin Volvo Penta IPS 600 engines are mounted a bit forward and drive through jack shafts for optimum weight distribution.

The helm is very complete yet simple and comfortable to use, with a large Raymarine multi-function display, tilt steering, double-wide seat and excellent outward vision to most sectors, even from a sitting position. You can open the roof and stand up to look out all around, while the electric opening side glass admits just the right amount of fresh air.

If you are lucky enough to be shopping in this price bracket, the Prestige 500S deserves to be on your list!

SPECIFICATIONS

Test boat engines: Twin Volvo Penta IPS 600 pod drives, D6 435 diesel engines with 6 cylinders, twin cams, 4 valves per cylinder, turbocharged and aftercooled, 435 hp each. Includes joystick docking.

PERFORMANCE
ENGINE RPM    SPEED MPH
1000                         7.4
1500                         10.3
2000                         13.0
2600                         19.7
3000                         25.0
3500                         31.9
3626                         33.9

CRUISING SPEED RPM/MPH
3,400 / 28.8

SPECIFICATIONS:
LENGTH OVERALL: 49’ 1” / 15.2 m
BEAM: 14’ 9” / 4.5
WEIGHT: 29,750 lbs / 13,500 kgs
FUEL CAPACITY: 2 x 175 gal / 2 x 650 L
WATER CAPACITY: 2 x 84 gal / 2 x 318 L
WASTE CAPACITY: 32 gal / 120 L
PRICE: (as tested, base, etc):

Test boat provided by Performance Marine, www.groupeperformancemarine.com

Performance data and price quoted by Prestige Luxury Motor Yachts, www.prestige-yachts.com

By Andy Adams

Destinations

  • Prev
Ah Canadian simplicity at its finest; small town, big marina. Little Hilton Beach (population ...
Vancouver-based Big Blue Yacht Charters Worldwide owner Emma Murdoch explains that luxury crewed ...
In the 1920s, a small cove in Canoe Bay was used as a shipping point and safe-haven for rum runners ...
Here’s an update from Caroline Swann with some news for the adventurous types who may be heading to ...
The New Glasgow marina is located about six miles up the East River of Pictou in the heart of the ...
The British Virgins took a huge hit last fall from Irma. Boats were stranded on the shore by the ...
Located about half way between Shediac and the Miramichi on New Brunswick’s Acadian Coast, the town ...
Suddenly the once forsaken city of Hamilton, Ontario is booming for at least two good reasons.
The Salty Dawg Sailing Association (SDSA) invites all sailors to join a cruising rally from the ...
Long popular with New England and St. John area boaters, Passamaquoddy Bay is too often overlooked ...

CYOB Destinations: We Visit the Hilton Beach Marina

Hilton BeachBy Amelia Morris

Ah Canadian simplicity at its finest; small town, big marina. Little Hilton Beach (population 200!), which I am lucky enough to call my cottage country, is located on the north-east coast of St. Joseph Island. The Hilton Beach Marina is one of the largest and most major ports of call in the Western North Channel. It also has a long and rich history dating back to the 1850’s.

I spoke with Marina Manager, Laura McRae and got the full scoop on what goes on in this inconspicuous but busy marina.

Read more about Hilton Beach Marina....

 

 

 

Lifestyle

  • Prev
On Thursday last week, at age 88, Bruce Kirby has been invested into the Order of Canada for his ...
The Olympic Qualification Regatta is now being held in Aarhus Denmark with unlimited entries. That ...
The demographics of sailing are changing, and more women are getting involved and are often rooted ...
Whether he’s sailing celebrities around the BVI’s or sailing an Etchell back home at his native ...
POTW input is irresistible, so this time you get a couple. And don’t forget to send your own Photo ...
After a good night’s sleep, it was a lot easier to work my way through checking into the US. I ...
This photo from a CPS member shows how talented boaters are. Brenda Cochrane from Kelowna BC, a ...
The first part of this blog will show that not every day is blue sky and sunshine in the Bahamas!
This beauty came our way from Reel Deal Yachts in Bahia Mar, Florida. Why not charter for the ...
This new legislation from Washington State Department of Fisheries applies to boats launched in ...

 

Scarab 255 Open

Scarab 255 OpenBy Andy Adams and John Armstrong

You can imagine,at the GroupeBeneteau dealer meeting in Michigan last fall where all the Four Winns, Scarab, Wellcraft, and Glastrondealers had come to see the latest new models, the docks were lined up with gleaming brand-new boats to show the dealers and media – and they certainly put on a show! But for me, the Scarab 255 Open was an immediate stand out. This is a boat that breaks new ground and brings fresh thinking and interpretation of the boating experience to a wide range of buyers.

We had a quick look around but the test drives would have to wait until the next day.

Read more about the Scarab 255 Open....

 

 

 

 

DIY & How to

  • Prev
Nothing stops a vacation faster than a problem with the fresh water system – be it leaks, smells, ...
CYOB readers often ask questions about their boats and system. For this issue, I’ve answered a ...
Modern marine engines run at very high temperatures and rely on a few methods to keep their ...
Pyrotechnic distress flares have been around for decades, while electronic strobe distress flares ...
In the early spring, just after launch, with the hustle and bustle of engine checks, antifouling, ...
All engines, including marine engines (inboards, outboards and stern drives) have many moving parts ...
Most of us don’t give a second thought to our sacrificial anodes – those curious knobs of raw metal ...
I once heard an argument at a yacht club. Two old salts, patiently itching to let go lines and ...
In this time of boat show afterglow, many boaters are counting the days until launch. 
This one-day course consists of both theory and practical demonstration sessions, is designed to ...

Marine Products

  • Prev
Stripping the antifouling paint from the bottom of a boat is physically demanding and is one of the ...
The 2019 Ultimate Sailing Calendar highlights the drama and excitement of blue-water sailing, as ...
Weather nerds and boaters of all stripes will be absorbed by Bruce Kemp’s account of the monstrous ...
Canada Rope promises that its new Night Saver Rope will illuminate at night and act as a reference ...
Take a look as a 68-foot yacht docks itself in between two Volvo Ocean 65 sailing yachts at the ...
Industry Firsts Include Direct Injection and Integrated Electric Steering System
Verviers, Belgium, 18 May 2018 — Mercury Marine, the world leader in marine propulsion technology, ...
Again, we return to the beginning. We started this column with a look at marine navigation for ...
Ga-Oh (spirit of the winds in Algonquin) creates bags and other items from re-purposed sails.
The 2018 Northwest Boat Travel Guide just arrived. This time of the year is the perfect time for ...