Outer Reef 720: Lazy Days at the Office
The Outer Reef 720 Deluxbridge is dressed well for work or play.
If I had to pick an office from which to work, the one on board the new Outer Reef Deluxbridge 720, Creative Edge, would be an easy choice. Most of us need an office aboard because even if we aren’t running a day-to-day business, there are personal affairs to keep in order. But on-board offices are too often cobbled together from a shared dressing table in a dark corner.
This office, on the enclosed bridge that verges on being a skylounge, has a permanent desk with computer, printer, fax, phones and file drawers: everything you need. But what makes it so wonderful is its location, surrounded by oversize windows for a spectacular view of your surroundings, whether they be the Exumas, Maine or Alaska. There are doors fore and aft to provide a gentle trade wind, although I’m afraid the comfortable lounge chairs on the large boat deck just steps away might be terribly tempting.
The rest of this go-anywhere-anytime yacht is no less appealing and, with 400 hours on the engines in the five months since delivery, it’s clear her owners feel the same way. Built for a family with four kids of varying ages, Creative Edge has the Outer Reef country galley—also with the builder’s trademark oversize windows—that flows into a curving dinette that easily seats nine. The granite-topped island in the galley invites everyone to get involved in the meal prep.
Yachts built for large families usually lean toward interiors that can be cleaned with a fire hose, but Creative Edge has the casual stylings of Ken Freivokh that are comfortable, inviting and elegant at the same time. The interior has warm teak and dark wengé joinery, including the wide-planked sole found on most Outer Reefs, but Creative Edge has Freivokh-inspired maple accents in the salon that carry through into the staterooms.
There are three staterooms, each en suite, with the master getting pride of place amidships for maximum beam and minimum motion. It is a cool retreat, with sliding shoji screens over the ports for privacy and an athwartships king bed anchored by twin nightstands. Notably, the stateroom includes a walk-in closet (hers) and another large closet (his), plus a built-in armoire for live-aboard storage. The twin vanities and large shower have sliding doors, while the head has its own compartment. There is a watertight door to the engine room in a closet on the after bulkhead, providing easy access as well as an emergency escape route.
Forward, the VIP stateroom fills the bow with a raised berth and pleasantly large head with shower, while a third cabin has multitasking roles: The large lower berth can serve for couples, while a Pullman berth turns this into a kids’ room.
Creative Edge is fitted with crew cabins abaft the engine room, which are fitted out to the same high level as the rest of the yacht, making them usable for guests. A double captain’s cabin is to starboard, and a bunked crew cabin to port, sharing a head and mini-galley—heaven for captains and teenagers alike.
The pilothouse, which Outer Reef correctly labels the Deluxbridge, has skylounge aspirations with a comfortable settee, the aforementioned office and a pair of pedestal helm chairs behind an expansive instrument panel. Creative Edge has optional wing stations created by narrowing the helm area slightly and adding wing doors. Protected by high bulwarks (so they fair invisibly into the exterior lines), each station has full engine controls as well as bow- and stern-thruster joysticks to make docking a cinch. A walkaround Glendinning handheld remote on the boat deck gives the skipper full engine control in every docking situation.
The boat deck, where the appealing lounge chairs reside, is immense. Spanning the full 18-foot-6-inch beam (thus providing sun/rain cover to the lower side decks), it allows a very large tender to be mounted athwartships with the crane aft for portside or astern launches. This still leaves room for ballroom dancing or parties using the outdoor kitchen with grill, fridge and sink.
The engine room on the Outer Reef 720 is quite simply spectacular, with full headroom and great accessibility for service. Powered by a pair of well-separated 503-horsepower Caterpillar C9 Acerts, Creative Edge was upgraded to twin 20kW gensets (standard are 9kW and 16kW), plus ABT TRAC stabilizers and an 1,800-gallon-per-day watermaker. Outer Reefs have an extensive standard equipment list, including the likes of twin isolation transformers, inverter/chargers, fuel polishing systems and just about everything a turnkey expedition yacht requires.
Cruising speed is nine knots at, hold your breath, just 14 gallons per hour, according to the captain of the model I ran. Need to outrun a storm? He says the 720 can pick up her skirts at 13.5 knots.
As always when I review an Outer Reef yacht, I’m impressed by the outstanding construction as well as the seamanlike layout and outfitting. And then there are wonderfully thoughtful details, like the pocket doors to close off the salon. But you really should spend a few hours poking around an Outer Reef to discover all the delightful details for yourself. Me? I’ll be in the office on the bridge, catching up on paperwork.
LOA: 71ft. 8in. (21.84m)
Beam: 18ft. 6in. (5.64m)
Draft: 5ft. 3in. (1.6m)
Displacement: 56 tons
Engines: 2 x 503-bhp Caterpillar C9 Acert
Speed (max./cruising): 13.5 knots/9 knots
Fuel: 2,000 gal. (7,571L)
Water: 400 gal. (1,514L)
Price: Contact builde