Everything seems Hunky Dory.
The best way to be more environmentally friendly afloat is to build your own eco-friendly boat from scratch. This isn't something many can do but it was for the owners of Hunky Dory.
Ok, I know the title seems a little obvious but you can't really overlook an opportunity to title a boat review this way when the boat is called 'Hunky Dory'. A dictionary definition of the term is "adjective, informal, fine; going well" all of which seems to describe this boat perfectly.
Hunky Dory was built by Ortomarine for Mel and Phil Wood who were, at the time of my visit to Droitwich, about to embark on a new life as continuous cruisers so the boat will be home for some time to come. With that in mind, the couple have made sure that this 61ft cruiser stern boat is fitted with everything they might need to make this new adventure as comfortable as possible. But despite the boat being fitted with everything you might need the resulting layout is somewhat 'minimalist'. That's not to say it is stark but probably best described as uncluttered.
One thing you can't accuse Hunky Dory of being is being bland! Without having to be painted in garish colours, the boat still manages to stand out with its clean-cut and no-nonsense paint job of bright white, black and blue colours used on the exterior make the boat really stand out. The graphics on the hull sides are unusual, but things like the TekDek on the stern and bow floors, and the stripy pattern of the seat cushions really catch the eye. Below the deck lies a sizeable battery bank, a Panda generator and a Bellmarine drive master electric motor making the boat quiet underway when the generator isn't needed. All of this is, and many other boat functions, are accessed via a touch screen running Ortomarine's own control system.
Inside the galley has been fitted out using Howden's units and worktop with every scrap of space having been utilised for either storage or the location of appliances. With almost everything hidden within the high gloss, dove grey units, the galley is very modern. LED lighting, hidden both under the gunwales and the worktops is impressive while being discrete. There is little more you could want in this galley. It has even been fitted with a Quooker tap! Not something you often see in a boat galley. A small dishwasher, a washer-dryer and a freezer are all included together with the more usual fridge, oven and microwave provide just about all the appliances you could possibly want.
Beyond the galley is the living area which is a little smaller than you might expect for a boat of this size, but having said that it's certainly not cramped. The area is made up of an L shaped dinette that will convert into a double berth, a table and an upholstered footstool that could easily provide more seating if required. The reason for the reduction in the area given over to this living space is to provide room for the snug, but more of that later.
The bathroom comes next and is, as you might expect, has a walkthrough layout with a sizeable shower cubical, washbasin and the rather oddly named 'Cinderella Comfort' incinerator toilet. As with the rest of the boat, maximum use has been made of the space on offer. Little additions like adding an additional towel store above the washbasin prove the point. The usual bathroom supplies are hidden in a cupboard behind the white wall panels - these contrast well with the vivid blue in the shower and on the washbasin splash-back. Storage is also provided beneath the washbasin and behind the sizeable mirror. Less obvious touches include an automatic shower pump that activates on the detection of water, and plinth LED lighting that has a dawn and dusk sensor and is PIR activated. The result is a very functional room that hides many of its features.
Next-door is the bedroom with a fixed double bed. Gas lift struts provide easy access to the storage space beneath with more storage provided in lockers above the bed. A full height double door wardrobe is on the port side towards the bow, with a hanging rail above and two large draws below. An anthracite radiator will keep the room warm, and the under gunwale LED lighting, together with multi white dimmable LED lights in the ceiling, provide a variety of lighting styles.
But for me, the feature of this boat's layout has to be the snug that is situated forward of the bedroom, where you would normally find the well-deck. This is the reason for the slightly smaller living area, and it has created a very cosy and quiet space with views out into the well-deck which mimics the stern's design and colour scheme. The snug, or bow room, has storage below the two bench seats to either side. These seats also provide two single beds if required, hence the boats impressive 2 + 2 + 2 specification. The under gunwale lighting extends into this room as you might expect and speakers fitted below the seats can provide the music from the sound system. A plinth heater below the step into the bow provides the heating in a very attractive and useful extra room.
For some Hunky Dory might seem a little too minimalistic but that would be to dismiss this boat too readily. The technology that has been employed within this boat is significant, and the result is a very impressive and comfortable and modern home. One that is packed with everything you could possibly want on land or on water!
Berths: 2 + 2 + 2
Style: Tyler Wilson “Mike Christian” semi-cruiser.
Propulsion: Fischer Panda serial hybrid using Bellmarina New Drive Master 15w
Bow thruster: Vetus Bowpro B065
Tanks: Diesel - 217 litres, Freshwater - 500 litres.
Generator: Panda 12000x PVMV-N 230v/50 Hz
Battery bank: 24 x LC2-1000 (60% DOD) 2v lead carbon batteries providing 1000Ah @ 48v.
Electrical system: Victron Quatro 48v 10000VA inverter with 140 amp charger. Blue solar charge controller, SmartShunt battery monitor and 3 x Orion DC-DC converter - 48v input, 12v output. 360w. 1 x 12v generator starter battery.
Hot water: 54ltr vertical twin coil calorifier heated by Eberspatcher S3 D4 4kW hydronic diesel heating system. 1kw immersion heater.
Fit-out: Boyriven Allura White expanded marine vinyl. Ceiling & below gunwale: Painted Tongue & Groove effect, moisture resistant MDF. Gunwale trim, floor skirting & ceiling trim in solid oak throughout.
Flooring: Galley, Bathroom & Snug: Lifestyle Colosseum 5G PEC Luxury Vinyl Tile with cork insulation layer (Shade: Mid Oak) Saloon: Associated Weavers Stainaway Ultra.
Galley: Howden’s Balham Gloss Dove Grey linear kitchen with integrated handle and LED lighting. Panasonic Microwave, LEC freezer, Fischer & Paykel dishwasher, Howdens Black Granite Composite sink, Quooker PRO3 Flex Chrome boiling water tap, Zenith Magma Compact Laminate worktop, Zanussi washer/dryer, Bosch fridge, Neff oven and hob.
Living area: L-Shaped Dinette, converting to double bed (4ft x 6ft 3in). Upholstery in Aquaclean Extreme Dunbar Teal fabric.
Bathroom: Cinderella Comfort Incinerator toilet. Aquafloe Large rectangular shower cubicle, Bristan Frenzy Thermostatic Bar Mixer Shower with water-saving eco-button. Jabsco Self-priming diaphragm shower pump with automatic operation upon water detection.
Bedroom: 4ft 6in x 6ft 3in fixed double bed with gas lift mattress base with storage area below bed.
Bow room/Snug: Built-in shaped seating each side of the central walkway, with storage below. May be used as 2 x single beds. Upholstery fabric: Aquaclean Extreme Dunbar Denim. Whale Integrated Water Pump with accumulator mounted beneath port-side seating. 2 x Q Acoustics Qi65CB speakers mounted in seat base. Smith’s SS3 Plinth Heater mounted in step to the bow deck. Under-gunwale LED lighting. Multi-white dimmable LED ceiling down-lighters with remote control operation
Price: for a similar specification boat IRO £180,000