Great thread! I am in the same boat. We are shopping
for a family cruiser. Our budget
is considerably smaller. My favorite layout for our family of 5 (kids 3,4,8) is the Dufour
12000 CT. They only made about 30 of them though.
We currently have a Pearson
390 on which we split the aft cabin
into 3 mini cabins. The rest of the boat is a total project
though. Besides that, it might just work.
I'm in the market for anything sturdy and bluewater
capable that has a set of bunkbeds. <45' would be a perfect size but bunkbeds don't generally appear until you reach 50'.
We looked at a Beneteau 434 but thought that the open floorplan, while modern, offered very little separation of living quarters - and the parents bedroom would be lacking. Separation seems trivial, but the Dufour
12000 CT manages to do it somewhat - if even with just a little step up from the bunk rooms to the living area.