The Boat

When it came to choosing a boat, the two primary attributes we required were design and build for 1) full time live aboard and 2) ability to make safe, comfortable and possibly transoceanic passages.  For us the decision of a catamaran rather than a monhull was easy.  Amazing amount of space (both for storage and for living), stability under sail and at anchor, ease of handling in open water as well as at dock, and shallow draft made for a clear choice.

With many choices of catamaran available, we chose the Antares 44i as it seemed the ideal size with the right balance  between comfort and performance.  The boat is now manufactured in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  Ours is to be hull #46, next to splash hopefully end of March.
Zooropa as of mid Feb.

The Antares comes with all the comforts of home including air conditioning/heating, microwave, washer/dryer and entertainment system (stereo system with 2 flat screen tv's).  All these systems are powered by a battery bank that is charged by generator and solar panels.

While Antares only produces 1 model of cat, there are numerous options and opportunities for customization which make for an interesting build process.

We chose the in mast furling option for the main sail for ease of handling (at the sacrifice of sail area);  we will have 4 options for head sail available - genoa, self tacking jib, screecher (extra large genoa) and asymmetric spinnaker.

Communication equipment, given we plan on living on the boat almost full time, is a high priority.  To this end, we have added to the standard VHF radio, a SSB radio,  a satellite communication link system for voicemail and internet connectivity and a satellite phone.

I'll elaborate on the various systems on the boat in future blogs as we travel the seas.  IB

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