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Design: Nordhavn 120

The Greatest Escape

With its biggest boat to date, Nordhavn stays true to its oceangoing heritage.


A Ready to relax? Head for the alfresco Jacuzzi tub.
B A foredeck davit lets you launch tenders to either side.
C For European boarding, use the passerelle, which is hidden under the port steps.
D Strength is assured, thanks to a hull laminate that exceeds ABS standards.


E Eat outside in the glass-enclosed aft deck and avoid the wind.

Offshore passagemaking has been the name of the game at Pacific Asian Enterprises (PAE) since its first Mason sailboat launched in the mid-1970's. In 1989, the Southern California-based company introduced a

46-foot ocean-ready powerboat, the first Nordhavn. Over the past 20 years, Nordhavn's fleet of long-distance trawlers has grown to include vessels that range from 40 feet up to 86 feet in length. Its latest model, which at 120'7" is 34 feet longer than Nordhavn's current flagship, has stayed true to the oceangoing principles PAE was founded upon.

F To ease movement, there are no vertical supports between the main saloon and dining area.
G Twin Bosch dishwashers make clean-up a snap.
H Where’s the VIP? How about aft?
I Two 5,000-gallon saddle tanks hold a little more than half of the vessel’s total fuel supply.
J The crew quarters sleep six, not including the captain, who has a cabin aft of the wheelhouse.

As with all Nordhavns, the construction of the 120 emphasizes strength, since weight is not a concern on these full-displacement vessels. (The 120's cruise speed should be around 11.5 mph or about 10 knots.) Consequently, the hull is solid fiberglass, reinforced by a matrix of full-length stringers and transversals. Displacement is listed as 848,994 pounds.

Nordhavn has also gained notoriety for providing a luxurious offshore experience, and the 120 is filled with features that reflect this reputation. On the main deck there's a full-beam master, complete with two large closets and a two separate his-and-hers bathrooms. Both have showers and the one to port also has a tub. The adjoining office, aft and to starboard, is flooded with light from three vertically elongated oval windows.


Aft of the owner's suite is a centerline galley whose cooking island and large pantry should please any offshore gourmet. Meals prepared here can be taken at the ten-person dining table amidships or, if it's more casual dining you're after, in the saloon where there's a good view of the retractable 50-inch plasma TV.

For more private viewing on a slightly smaller 42-inch screen, owners and guests can retreat to the skylounge one deck above, which has seating for six. For-tunately there's also room to stow a lot of DVDs, since with a fuel capacity of 17,500 gallons, the 120 can spend a lot of time at sea. (She has an approximate range of 3,000 NM.) Hull No. 1 is scheduled to launch in late 2011.

CONTACT: Nordhavn (949) 496-4848.


  • Builder: Nordhavn

This article originally appeared in the March 2010 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.