|Che on Charter in the Caribbean|
|Crewed Yacht Charter Reviews|
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The 114-foot Che is one of the largest sailing catamarans available for charter anywhere in the world, seeking to create the perfect blend of yin and yang
Che was built for a couple who previously owned a 74-foot Sunreef sailing catamaran that also was called Che. They wanted to increase the spaciousness of their yacht, which they did by building much, much bigger and yet incorporating only four guest cabins for seven or eight guests total. Other charter yachts of Che’s size would likely have six cabins for 12 guests—in fact, the smaller, 102-foot Sunreef sailing catamaran Ipharra takes 12 guests—but the idea aboard Che is for the guests to enjoy true spaciousness and tranquility.
That’s exactly what I felt during the few days that I spent cruising round-trip from Sint Maarten to St. Barth’s in the Northern Caribbean. The owners of Che attempt to live up to the yacht’s name, which means the perfect combination of yin and yang. I found little onboard the yacht that didn’t need to be there, such as extraneous pillows or decorations, but I did find everything that I needed to feel just as relaxed as I might in a top-dollar spa. Every item on this yacht felt crisp, clean, and simple, in a way that created a sense of elegance and oneness with nature. A good example is the woodwork onboard, which is bamboo that ripples across the yacht’s walls in lovely patterns. Many yacht owners would add glistening artwork, but Che’s owners simply let the wood’s natural beauty speak for itself.
Che’s crew, too, operate the yacht in a way that is meant to inspire a sense of soothing calm. Capt. Daniel Rabasse likes to take guests away from shore to anchor in tranquil coves and harbors for sunbathing, swimming, and snorkeling. Chef Anna-Maria Zorgman—if you want her to—will prepare menus in keeping with the owners’ preferred diet, which is macrobiotic for full-body cleansing and health. Again, the ambience is akin to what you might find in a luxury spa, where the achievement of Zen is the ultimate goal.
Sailing, of course, fits beautifully into that quest, what with its soothing breezes and quiet motion. Che is a superb example of ease at sea, with her catamaran hulls providing exceptional stability and her towering sails able to capture a great deal of wind. I sailed round-trip from Sint Maarten to St. Barth’s during the annual Christmas winds, which easily reach 20 knots on most days. In those conditions, which can leave monohull sailing yachts heeling over at uncomfortable angles, Rabasse steered Che at 10 or 11 knots to the absolute delight of charter guests sitting in the relaxation area just behind the yacht’s sun-drenched, upper-deck helm. Che heeled only slightly, at an angle that would barely be noticeable even to first-time charter guests.
Those Christmas winds, it’s worth noting, make the conditions at some Northern Caribbean beaches far better for wind surfing or kite surfing than for sunbathing and swimming during the month of February—a fact that I discovered during a tour of some of the ritziest resorts on St. Barth’s. While those resort guests, who had paid a pretty euro for their vacations, lay on chaise lounges beneath towels trying to keep warm, Che waiting at anchor in a protected harbor where our guests could swim and relax in comfort.
“If you charter for a week in Sint Maarten, St. Barth’s, and Anguilla,” says Capt. Rabasse, “there are more than enough quiet, private beaches to enjoy and to explore. There is really no need to go ashore unless you want a taste of civilization. Otherwise, we have everything you need to relax here on the boat.”
I wholeheartedly agree. Whatever your definition of yin and yang, Che can create their perfect combination, just as she was built to do.