By Capt. Rob Smith
Doral built the Intrigue with a “cabin forward” design so you can have more entertainment room topside. At just over 30’, you are likely to spend most of your time topside with family and friends, with occasional nights aboard in a local cove, river or lake. The interior has all the comforts of a cruiser for day and overnight use, including a head, galley, dinette and sleeping accommodations. This year, Doral added several new engine combinations bringing the choices to sixteen packages from Yanmar, Cummins-MerCruiser, Volvo Penta and MerCruiser. This time, I tested with the new Axius system from MerCruiser.
From the Back
The swim platform has room to safely board from a dock, use as a central launching point for swimming or playing at anchor, and with the power to pull, do a bit of skiing or other water sports fun. The test model I had included the optional teak inserts on the swim platform adding more elegance. A dual fender rack keeps them ready for action as you approach your slip. The port side transom entry works well to keep everyone in view of the person behind the wheel before starting up the engines.
Into the Cockpit
The Intrigue has a single level full fiberglass cockpit liner. Just inside the transom door is a handy swim shower, then a cockpit refreshment center so you can keep the beverages ready and anyone can rinse off their hands before enjoying lunch. The top has a granite anthracite aspect finish and Doral includes their custom green acrylic beverage and bottle holders. A nice option to add will be the optional refrigerator or ice maker at the beverage center. Doral offers NUTeak PVC inserts for the cockpit and swim platform sole or the carpet with teak pattern for easy cleaning. The engine hatch comes up smoothly on twin electric driven motors. The twin MerCruisers with Axius Premier on my test model offered good access to check points and pre-launch inspection.
Doral has a unique sliding aft seat on many of their cruisers, including the Intrigue. This two position sliding seat adds at least one more seat when extended as well as comparable floor space. With it extended, it does extend out over the swim platform, but underway it adds seating room, and at anchor it still leaves room to enjoy the swim platform. The new fiberglass table top with filler cushion has its own dedicated storage in a slot under the engine hatch. You can opt to have a solid wood table top. Moving forward, the Intrigue has a lounger bench with built in armrest on the port side that I found good for an observer, or just to sit back and enjoy chatting with your friends in the cockpit. Directly across is the doublewide helm bench seat with bolsters for stand-up driving room. Doral considers the need to get under some of the low bridges you experience in Europe and the Americas. The radar arch is designed to retract reducing the water to bridge height. I recommend the optional electric assisted arch for simplicity and ease of use.
At the Helm
The Intrigue’s helm reminds me of many of the dashes in some much more expensive large cruising yachts. This modern layout is functional and offers room for the optional Raymarine A60 GPS and Chartplotter. The nicest new addition is the optional Axius DTS Basic or Premier joystick drive system. Not only will this make your life far easier at the docks, it will free you from always being behind the wheel as your passengers can become virtual experts in about 30 minutes of training.
To go forward, Doral offers 7” side decks or the center windshield walkthrough which I prefer. On the bow, you can have optional loungers in mahogany or cushions with integrated pillows. The anchor and rode stows under a hatch up front. The system includes a windlass and stainless steel roller. My test model had the optional polished stainless steel anchor which looks very nice.
The green acrylic sliding cabin entry offers tinted light to brighten up the interior. A cabin door privacy curtain prevents prying eyes from intruding. What I really liked about the companionway entry was the sliding screen door. This way, you can take advantage of the cool morning or evening air without allowing all the bugs to come inside and enjoy you!
The Galley and Head
The galley has anthracite granite aspect counters with a stainless steel sink. Appliances include a refrigerator/freezer, coffee maker and silver microwave oven as well as a two burner cooktop with Corian cover. Across from the galley is the head that is convenient to the interior and as a day head for the guests. The vanity has the same style counter tops, a new Vacuflush toilet and shower curtain. The head is a fiberglass “wet head.”
The forward V-berth has a privacy curtain for night time. If you opt for air conditioning, you now have Elite Series air conditioning controls. For entertainment, there is an AM/FM/CD player, and in the U.S. and Canada, a flat screen TV and DVD player. The L-shaped dinette with laminate table can also be converted to added space for overnight guests. A cedar lined closet will keep your clothes fresh. The aft cabin has a double bed and reading lights.
The Intrigue offers optional air conditioning; either a 10,000 BTU digital system or an upgraded Tropical system at 18,000 BTUs. Certainly, if you opt for the air, you will want either the gas or diesel generator option as well. You can add a central vacuum system if you want to simplify cleanup at the end of a cruise. In the cockpit, you can opt for Cabriolet style upholstery. For exterior finish, and other personal touches, you have additional options other than what has already been mentioned.
The 2009 Doral Intrigue measures 30’6” length overall, 33’2” with the integrated bow pulpit added in. Her beam is 11’2” and her weight is 12,500 lbs. Fuel capacity is a total of 166 gallons in twin tanks with a 40 gallon fresh water tank. Cabin headroom was about 6’3” at the highest point.
The Intrigue handled well underway and was smooth and simple to operate at the docks using the Axius system. I tested on a river close to the Doral plant in Canada on a day of excellent cruising conditions. She got up on plane in 4.7 seconds with the MerCruiser 300-hp 350 MAG MPI twin engines. She zipped on past 30 mph in a scant 8.7 seconds to a top speed of 49.6 mph. I found her most economical cruising speed to be at 3500 rpm and 30.6 mph. At this speed she was burning 42.5 gph at .72 mpg and had a full tank range of 107 miles.
Doral is a boutique builder of quality boats. That means they build fewer boats a year and welcome your customization requests so you can let your ideas flow. The Intrigue is a great size cruiser for a small family, yet has room to take a few guests along for either a day of fun on the water or a sunset cruise. If you’re in the mood for a cruiser, it is worth your while to see how the Intrigue could fit into your plans.