The Alajuela has the best glasswork of all the Atkins Ingrid derivations that I've come across. Furthermore, they were optimized for sailing performance. The boats had cast lead ballast concentrated in the center of the boat. That goes a long way to reducing hobby horsing which is a problem with North Sea style double enders. The masts were taller than the typical Bluewater or Orca design in the Mark I version and even taller in the Mark II so they carry more sail area in combination with the lead ballast. Something these boats sorely need for light air performance with their large wetted surface.
Most of the Alajuelas were factory finished to quite high standards. The Bluewater and other PNW Ingrids were mostly home builts with great variations in quality of construction. Ballast for most of these boats was steel
punchings spread out along the centerline. Effective righting moment may have been close but weight was carried well into the ends, unlike the Alajuela. Have only been in one Orca which was Taiwan
built IIRC. Been a long time but seem to remember the woodwork below was typical Taiwan
quality, which is to say high.
plan of the Alajuela was similar to the Westsail 32 just stretched out a bit. Not as much larger interior
than a W32 as you'd expect from it's additional 6' of length and nearly 5 tons more displacement
. Where the W32 crammed a much larger interior into a relatively short hull
with severe design compromises, the Ingrid was much finer forward and sails
To my thinking, the Alajuela 38 is a much better boat than the typical PNW Ingrid. You will get to pay for it however. Most of the Alajuelas listed tend to be twice as costly or more than the others.