We take a look at some of the most notable sailing yachts making their Southampton Boat Show debut next month

Much like cinema releases of new films, boat launches have been stymied by the pandemic while boat builders have hung on until they’ve been able to give their latest models the fanfare they need to drive sales. There may have been fewer launches compared to pre-COVID, but there’s still plenty new to see at the 2021 Southampton Boat Show.

For top-end luxury, there’s the Contest Yachts 55CS. It’s been around for a couple of years, but picked up the Luxury Cruiser award in the European Yacht of the Year 2021.

The 50-60ft luxury bluewater cruising sector, which is about as big as you’d want to go without seriously thinking about having to take crew, paid or otherwise, is getting pretty competitive these days as demand continues to be high. Have a look, even if only to dream.

All visitors to the Southampton Boat Show will be required to present a negative lateral flow test result (this can be displayed on the NHS App, via email or text) upon arrival at the gate.

Any visitor who fails to present a negative lateral flow test result when required will not be allowed to enter the show

Full details can be found here

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While we’re on the bluewater cruisers, two new boats will be worth looking at. If you’ve been to Boot Düsseldorf, you may have already seen the Discovery 48S, which will be on show at Southampton for the first time.

Built to exacting standards and representing luxury British boatbuilding, she’s a heavy displacement (19-tonne) go-anywhere cruiser, but with a swing keel that reduces her draught to just 1.06m, meaning you can still get off the beaten track.

The yard, which took over Southerly a few years ago, is introducing a walk-in scale model of the interior of the baby of the range, the planned Southerly 42, with new Discovery styling and the trademark raised saloon and swing keel.

Swedish yard Hallberg-Rassy have long been a benchmark of high-quality cruising yachts, and the Hallberg-Rassy 400 should be no exception.

We reviewed her sister yacht, the centre-cockpit Hallberg-Rassy 40C in 2020 and loved the new sparkle of performance the range now has, created by the modern, beamy hull shapes, long waterlines and double rudders. The Hallberg-Rassy 400 has the same hull as the 40C, but offers more space on deck and a layout that those used to aft cockpits will prefer.

Back in the 40-50 size range, there are three other new boats to see. Beneteau’s Oceanis range has long been a favourite of cruising families, sailing schools and charter companies and the Beneteau Oceanis 40.1 hits a very popular size bracket at a competitive price.

We tested her in 2020 and thought she was a cracking yacht with lots to offer a family for coastal cruising. Have a look at the Bavaria C38 by way of comparison. We were hugely impressed with the quality and performance of this boat, and will give similar boats a run for their money.

Up against both of those, Dufour is bringing its entire range. The Dufour 470 is the new sibling in the line up with three models on offer, alongside the Dufour 360, 390 and 430, and completes the updated stable with more modern styling and performance. Notably, it has a galley forward of the saloon, just aft of the mast, so is an interesting layout to see.

For something with a slightly sportier bent, there is the Salona 46, making a world debut. Designed by J&J, she aims to be a fast performance cruiser for shorthanded sailing, and is designed around electric propulsion.

There’s also the Dehler 38SQ to have a look at, which updates the deck layout and accommodation of the 38 for a sporty and engaging fast cruiser.


The Dehler 38SQ is due to make its Southampton Boat Show debut in September 2021.

Also on display with Inspiration Marine is the Moody 41 Deck Saloon, that we tested earlier this year – an innovative boat that aims to bring the inside/outside, one-level living of catamarans to the monohull world, it’s a concept that’s worth seeing and works surprisingly well.

A favourite of the shorthanded offshore racing community, the Jeanneau Sun Fast 3300 has become an increasingly common sight on the Solent amongst other places, and high profile sailors like Dee Caffari getting in on the action. The Sun Odyssey range will also be on show, with a new 380 model recently announced.