Jeanneau is known for boldly implementing new concepts. With the Yachts 55, the shipyard is turning the wheel of yacht design a little further and developing a consistently conceived owner’s yacht for blue water, which can even be sailed single-handed thanks to many electronic solutions.
The smallest model in Jeanneau’s large cruising yacht range is a novelty in deck layout. The shipyard’s aim was to build a monohull that was only slightly inferior to catamarans in terms of space and roominess. Jeanneau developed a completely new room concept for this. Plenty of space in the stern with two large lounge areas, a forward steering position and aft cabins for guests with a separate entrance via the cockpit.
Jeanneau creates space like on a cat
You can get on board in the port aft via the automatically extending gangway. A small door in the raised bathing platform opens the way on board. Two large lounge areas divided in the middle with electrically lowerable tables create huge sun loungers or a dining area. There is space for up to a dozen people. Perhaps a bit much for a yacht that is actually designed for six people. Next to the bathing platform there is an extendable ourdoor grill, there is no dinghy garage, it is hung on the extendable David poles.
You walk comfortably forward to the two helm stations, which are positioned well forward. A hardtop covering the entire front cockpit stretches directly above them on a targa bracket. It creates a large covered area with a navigation station and a seating area to starboard.
The navigation station is equipped with a Raymarine chart plotter screen and autopilot control. A perfect place to keep watch on a warm night. For added convenience, it is possible to completely close off this space in front of the steering position. Windows on the sides and in the roof provide a view of the sea and let in plenty of light.
What sailors want
Inside and outside on the Yachts 55 are no longer defined as above and below deck, but on the same level as on a catamaran. For dedicated blue water sailors, the front cockpit becomes a well-protected and very bright area in bad weather.
Jeanneau surveyed 1,100 Jeanneau bluewater sailors and incorporated their wishes and suggestions into this layout. Most owners are between 50 and 60 years old and sail as a couple for four to six months a year, sometimes with family or friends, but primarily as a couple. They sail long distances, even across the Atlantic. You need a yacht that can be sailed by two people for more than 24 hours. The Jeanneau Yachts 55 is designed to make this possible. The concept has been very well received by customers.
The overhead navigation table with plotter is also a logical choice for long journeys. Jeanneau has combined the good sailing characteristics of a monohull with the spaciousness of a catamaran. Sailing takes place on deck, living is below deck. Everything is tidy in the cockpit. The mainsheet is attached to the targa bracket and there are no lines on deck to get in the way.
There is another special feature on deck. Access to the two spacious aft cabins with en-suite bathrooms is via the cockpit. Jeanneau has consistently thought the owner’s yacht through to the end and kept the guest areas, with their own wet room, separate. Both are large enough for guests to feel at home here: With a standing height of almost two meters, a large window, a sofa and its own refrigerator, it is a more comfortable cabin than most aft cabins seen elsewhere at 55 feet.
The apartment below deck
The Jeanneau Yachts 55 is offered in exactly one cabin layout, which is also highly unusual. Almost three quarters of the boat, from amidships to the bow, are intended for the owner couple. The large open living space with a standing height of over two meters looks like an open-plan apartment.