|Dry Weight||27 t.|
|Max Headroom||N/A||Bridge Clearance||N/A|
|Prices, features, designs, and equipment are subject to change. Please see your local dealer or visit the builder's website for the latest information available on this boat model.|
|Std. Power||Not Available|
|Tested Power||Currently no test numbers|
With both upper and lower steering stations, the Azimut Flybridge 53 will be as comfortable in inclement weather as she is on a nice day like this. Hullside windows both amidships and forward light up the master and VIP cabins.
A Cabin We Could Live In
Designers Stefano Righini (concept and exterior styling) and Carlo Galeazzi (interior design) managed to fit both the midships master suite and a conventional engine room into the 16.7 m LOA hull, with room left over for two more staterooms.
It's tough to beat Azimut for elegant styling, and the Flybridge 53's master cabin shows why. The angled berth has room on both sides for easy entry, although there are step-ups.
On the port side is an intimate booth-style dinette, the perfect place for breakfast when you don't feel like getting dressed and going topside.
The Azimut Flybridge 53's palatial master cabin is amidships, where the hull is widest and deepest. Her 15' 6" (4.74 m) of beam means there's room here not only for a queen-sized berth, mounted catty-corner to leave walk-around space, but also a booth-style dinette for two and a large head with stall shower. Headroom is a regal 6' 4" (1.93 m), surprising when you realize the main salon is right overhead. Triple hullside windows port and starboard pour in natural light.
The engine room is just a bulkhead away from one's head while sleeping in the master, so we hope Azimut's engineering department provided plenty of sound insulation. The VIP stateroom shares a head with the starboard twin-berthed cabin. Note crew cabin aft.
Where's the rub? The VIP cabin forward and the twin-berth third stateroom aren't as oversized as the master – how could they be? They are typical for a boat this size, and more than adequate. And they share a head; frequently the VIP cabin on a yacht like the Flybridge 53 has en suite facilities. But do we really care? No. The man, or woman, who foots the bill should have a roomy, comfortable cabin, even if it means taking a bit away from guests. Guests, after all, are just temporary; the owner is full-time.
The VIP cabin is typical of a yacht this size, with the berth pushed right into the bow. But with big hull windows port and starboard, this cabin, unlike most, gets natural light.
One way to gain room below is to put the galley in the salon, as Azimut did here. The galley, dinette and lower helm are on the same level, easier for the cook.
Azimut designers put the galley and a formal dining area on the same level as the lower helm, making it easy for the skipper to drive the boat while the cook cooks and the guests kibitz around the table. No one is banished belowdecks. The salon proper is a couple of steps down, and leads smoothly onto the aft deck through a wide sliding door.
The main salon bathes in natural light through tinted windows. Furniture is pickled oak with lacquered cognac inserts and dark leather tops. Seating is covered with a two-toned velvet and silk fabric. Note the two steps up to the raised galley/dining/lower helm areas.
A stainless-steel-framed sliding door leads from the salon onto the aft deck, shaded by the flying bridge overhang. We'd spend most of our time out there. The cabinet at left hides a TV.
It would be tough, but we could endure spending time on the Flybridge 53's aft deck. A wet bar, behind the camera, will hold extra libations; the steps to the flying bridge look wide and easy to navigate, with a sturdy stainless grab rail to help.
Don't like the aft deck? How about this sybaritic flying bridge, with another dinette, comfortable lounges and a sunpad? And an opening sunroof in the hardtop. We like the sinuous handrail around the stairway, to the left in this picture.
European-designed yachts often have lower arches than we like, but Azimut builds theirs plenty tall. The company calls the arch a "roll bar"; we hope never to test that function!
If you read BoatTEST.com regularly, you know that most yachts this size with midships master staterooms are pod-powered; one advantage of pod drives is the opening up of a boat's midsection for accommodations, thanks to the engines' aft placement. But the Azimut Flybridge 53 runs twin 715-hp Caterpillar C12 ACERT diesels bolted to conventional prop shafts. We haven't tested the boat ourselves, but the builder claims a top speed of 31 knots, cruising speed of 28 knots, half-load, with this power. The advantage to this power is ease of maintenance and repair: You can find a Caterpillar mechanic almost anywhere.
The lower helm is, in our opinion, the main steering station. There's room for two good-sized nav units, secondary electronics and necessary gauges and switches. Even the wheel is a work of art.
So how do you maneuver a yacht like this one without pods? Pods have been so heavily promoted recently you might have forgotten captains handled boats without them for decades, and expertly, too. Azimut makes it easier with their computer-controlled Easy Docking system. It manipulates the engines, steering and bow and stern thrusters to make close-quarters maneuvering as angst-free as it can be. Like pod drives, it’s joystick controlled, and intuitive to use, but works with conventional props.
The upper helm, to port on the flying bridge, will seem backwards to many American skippers used to piloting from the starboard side. We expect most will quickly get used to manipulating the controls with their left hand.
Price and Advice
Figure on spending around $1,750,000 for a new Azimut Flybridge 53; we found several 2011 boats for sale at that price in the U.S. That's on the high end of the price range for this size yacht, but if you want Azimut design, engineering, style and panache, it'll cost you. Whether you enjoy your boat in the Med, southern Florida or any of the other world yachting centers, you'll stand out at the helm of an Azimut.
We say, if you don't mind spending the extra Euros, go for it: You can't beat an Azimut, in our opinion. If you're just shopping, check one out, too – it'll give you a standard to measure other boats against. Or a yacht to aspire to.
Does she look like $1.75 million to you? She does to us, and we're not talking about the model on the foredeck.
= Standard = Optional
|Warranties change from time to time. While BoatTEST.com has tried to ensure the most up-to-date warranty offered by each builder, it does not guarantee the accuracies of the information presented below. Please check with the boat builder or your local dealer before you buy any boat.|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!