Design discussion

Over the years, we have seen quite a few yachts of all sizes with several decks or half-decks with forward-facing windows, enabling for instance an owner?s suite or observation room with great forward views, in addition to the bridge.

The designer (and owner) of course wants to make the most of this feature, so the bridge is often placed on the lower level, and the suite/lounge on the upper. I'm wondering how the visibility is from the bridge when placed almost at front-deck-level? The blind-spot straight ahead must be enormous. What do regulations say about this? During docking and maneuvering in tight areas there is of course the option of a flybridge/crow's nest/wing station, but even during voyage I suspect the captain would want a good visual overview of the seas ahead. I for sure spent 90% of my time on the bridge looking out the windows and 10% on the displays when I was a navigator in the navy.

One way around this is of course to add even more (half)-decks to the yacht, for example a small lounge on the first level forward, the bridge above that, and the owners suite on top. I've seen (and done) various attempts to design this, and they mostly end up looking like a wedding cake as soon as you have more than two rows of forward facing windows (Real life example: Reverie). Has anybody seen a yacht with a good solution to this?

A few examples of good looking yachts with (I suggest) a good visibility bridge AND a great view from the upper lounge is Southern Cross III, Chamar and True Blue.

Modified by bik3man at 1:50 PM 8/9/2004