G'day fellow Aussies,
I moved to the USA many years ago, but am originally from Sydney!
Regarding the two boats you are discussing, I was at the Paris boat show
in December, and the Miami
show last month. My short list (on paper) was down to the Lagoon 440
, the Leopard 46
and the Orana
44. After the Miami
show we are definitely considering the Leopard 46
. I really don't like the flybridge helm
station on the Lagoon
. There was no Orana at either show so I still haven't seen one yet.
A couple of observations from the boats I have seen. I know a lot of people will disagree with me about this, but the 38 foot boats are just too small for comfortable blue water
cruising IMO. They are perfect for weekend trips and the odd week in the Whitsundays, but I can't imagine living on one. Comparing the Leopard 46 to the Leopard 38 is just night and day. They are two completely different classes
of boat. You can't tell from the brochures, but when you step aboard it's obvious.
I was also eager to see the Seawind
boats and there was an 1160 at the Miami show. We took a look at it, but it's the same thing. Just way too small, not a very good cockpit
, and all the lines routed on top of the deck
make it a chore to move around. Definitely not a good fit for us. Maybe it's just as well because with the exchange rate where it is, buying
an Australian boat is out of the question. You get a lot more boat for your $US or Euro right now.
I'm planning on being at the Sydney show in July, so hopefully we can see the Orana 44 there. If not, I think we're buying
the Leopard 46.
Good luck, and definitely whatever you do, don't buy a boat until you have spent a good amount of time in/on it.