There are basically two different breeds of yacht. First, is the large condo on the water that glides from port to port, keeping guests entertained along the way with food and drink while dining at 5-star restaurants at each destination. At night, she sleeps under shore power and air conditioning before moving on to the next locale, or perhaps back home and to work on Monday. If weather pops up, perhaps even rain, then the plans are dropped and the guests go shopping shoreside instead of cruising.
Then, There’s the Long-range Cruiser Type of Motoryacht.
These vessels are designed for leaving the dock and staying away for extended periods… sometimes for months at a time. They not only have all the comforts of home but the ability to carry stores and dry goods to support that mission. More to the point though, these boats are designed to remain underway in good and bad weather. Safe harbor may be a long way off and running home at the first hint of wind is not going to happen.The Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse is the latter type of motoryacht. But because she is so big inside, and because the vessel will be custom-built inside to meet an owner's requirements she can also serve the function of the coastal entertainment-type of motoryacht. However, a boat built for the first use is not necessarily appropriate for the second.
Exterior Features Inspection
The main deck of the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse benefits from the wide side decks allowing unrestricted access from stem to stern, in full safety even when underway. The aft deck is protected from the elements by the extended boat deck overhead. Standard teak decking runs from the aft deck to midships at the side decks. A standard wet bar is located forward on the aft deck.Boarding is from either the swim platform, if secured to a floating dock, or through side doors to both sides of the aft deck if made fast to a fixed pier.Options include stainless steel gates at the steps to the swim platform. Sliding Phantom screens for the salon and pilothouse doors keeps bugs at bay.
The Flying Bridge
Sure to be one of the most popular places while the 72 Pilothouse is underway or at the dock, the flying bridge offers as much open space as some 100-footers we’ve seen. Thanks to the extended aft deck, a boat deck serves as a launching spot for a tender, and while vacated, is a welcome spot to place some deck chairs and enjoy the view. An optional awning extends from the hardtop aft to stainless steel poles and is fabricated from “Batyline Crème” Ferrari mesh fabric.A bar with swing out seats is ahead and to port. It includes a sink and refrigerator. An electric grill is offered as an option to bring outdoor cooking to the table, as it were. An L-shaped settee wraps around a fiberglass pedestal table to starboard, both in close proximity to the center mounted helm, and therefore the host.
Sky Lounge Option
Before we leave our discussion of the flying bridge, we have to add that there’s another option that converts the flying bridge into another living space. The Sky Lounge ($126,000) encloses an upper helm and adds L-shaped seating, a wet bar, and of course awesome views.
The Pros of the Sky Lounge Option
The Cons of a Sky Lounge
The entire interior of the 72 Pilothouse benefits from Ocean Alexander's Fresh Air system. Filtered fresh air is drawn from the outside and vented to the lower staterooms providing constant fresh, clean air.Interior woods can be ordered in either Sapelli or upgraded to Walnut. The wood comes standard with a satin finish and optional upgrade to high gloss is also available.
Two Versions Available
The Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse can be ordered in two versions… a three stateroom that has been available for several years now, or a four stateroom, the first model of which is the version we tested.
There are six different color choices for the granite and seven different color choices for marble, all at no additional upcharge. Granite counter tops are backed with aluminum honeycomb to reduce the thickness and weight.
The salon is accessed from a sliding, double-wide glass door offset to the port side of the aft deck. The door slides open at the push of a button where a handle would normally be. Sensors to the side of the slider frame cause the door to be closed after 5 seconds of no one passing across the sensors. When the door starts to close, passing even a hand into the path causes the sensors to reverse the door to a fully open position yet again. No contact need be made. Of course this system can be overridden to leave the door open and then slide the Phantom screen closed for continuous ventilation.Soft tones of the carpeting and furniture provide a pleasant offset to the dark Sapelli woods of the cabinetry. A recessed decorative panel overhead provides a balanced focal point between the custom designed interior and the enlarged windows, which incorporate aluminum beams and sandwiched glass construction. These new windows allowed 28% greater visibility and incoming light over previous models, according to the builder.
All wood paneling and cabinetry
is furnished with a satin finish. All countertops are high-gloss finished. Stainless steel 316 grade hardware is used throughout. Push-button handles for drawers and cupboards provide positive locking for maintaining security when underway.Some of the salon amenities include a 46” (117 cm) TV on an electric lift, 24 V LED lights, and granite countertops. The windows can be fitted with electric shades that include a remote control.Ocean Alexander allows for a $40,000 decor allowance for carpeting, bedspreads and soft goods.
To port is a dinette that creates sort of a “country kitchen” that has become popular in the last 10 years. One of the two optional layouts has a dining room, but for those who choose the layout without the dining room, the L-shaped settee wrapping around a solid wood table on an elevated platform serves the purpose. We suspect that in good weather the table on the aft deck or on the flying bridge will be the preferred locations for formal dining.
Clever Table Design.
When transitioning between the dining table and galley island, the table seems to be a bit close to the seats to allow for a comfortable entry to the banquette. However, the table top is on sliders allowing it to pull away, making entry and egress comfortable.
The galley is located in the opposite corner of the pilothouse deck from the dining area. There are two important points to consider. First, the design of the galley is such that thanks to the clever use of an island, there are no "pinch points" or "dead end alleys" to the galley design. One can simply walk through the galley rather than in to and out of the galley. This makes it easy for 2-people to work in the galley.Secondly, owners need to feel a smooth transition between the home and the water. Having full-sized appliances, plenty of counter space and the same functionality as the best land-based kitchen is a critical component towards enjoying the yacht ownership experience. A case in point on the 72 Pilothouse is the standard size stand-up refrigerator/freezer with French doors.
An optional galley TV can be added that will mount under the aft corner overhang of the cabinetry and it includes a satellite receiver. Upgrades to the standard appliances include a 30" (76.2 cm) Jenn-Air electric oven and Jenn-Air dishwasher, a 15” (38 cm) trash compactor, a Siegel water purifier, and custom stainless steel pot holders for the cooktop.
Lower Decks Inspection
For the lower decks on the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse, there are two access points, a private entrance for the master in the salon, and a separate entrance for the guests forward next to the starboard side door. Let's start with a look at the master stateroom.
The master stateroom is accessed from a private staircase to the forward port side of the salon. This gives the owners the privacy demanded of a yacht in this size and in fact, is one of the many features that make the 72 Pilothouse an ideal size yacht that will be enjoyed by her owners.The stateroom is full beam with a king-sized berth mounted squarely on the centerline minimizing the feel of any of the yacht’s motions. The berth is located against the forward bulkhead with a set of stairs to the aft side of the stateroom leading to the master head. With this arrangement, there are three layers of buffer between the owners’ sleeping in the berth and the machinery of the engine room – two bulkheads, one with extra sound-reducing material, and distance in the head.
Among the many amenities in the master stateroom are a 46” (116.8 cm) TV with audio system, an Ultraleather upholstered headboard, and granite countertop at the TV cabinet (not shown in this picture), an owners’ safe mounted in the hanging locker and enlarged hullside windows allowing 28% greater visibility over previous versions of the 72. Photo by Forrest Johnson.
The master head has some interesting features. The stall shower is a seamless fiberglass design engineered to provide long-term protection against moisture and water intrusion behind the shower panels. This construction method eliminates foul odors, water damage and hidden mildew which otherwise often develops over time.
The shower door
has a granite/marble frame and "crystal-clear" glass custom-made for Ocean Alexander, providing superior transparency and reflectiveness. This, along with custom-made for Ocean Alexander "minimalist and transparent water strips", create a unique "Crystal Shower" that is a proprietary feature to Ocean Alexander.Standard floors for the master head are wood but there is an interesting option worth considering… heated granite floors.
The shower is also massive with a large seat against the hull side. The toilet is in a separate enclosed space. One thing that needs to be addressed with the head in general is ventilation. We’d like to see exhaust fans in both the shower and toilet compartments. Currently there is an opening portlight in the shower only. This is an easy fix.
Guests access their staterooms by a separate staircase at the forward end of the pilothouse deck, center-mounted in the four stateroom layout, offset to starboard in the three stateroom layout. In both instances, it provides for much-appreciated separation between the owners and guests.
The VIP has an island queen berth in the usual bow configuration. There’s a single overhead hatch over the foot of the bed and plenty of artificial lighting to be had, both overhead, and at the headboard. There are the usual hanging lockers and additional storage underneath the berth. We would ask the builder to install cabinets port and starboard to make use of the bow flare for added storage.
Our test boat had the two guest staterooms, both with twin berths, one stateroom had them set perpendicularly to one another, in an over and under arrangement. We like this arrangement because it permits more floor space in the middle of the cabin.
The Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse can be piloted from either a flybridge station or the standard main deck helm. Having the lower station, and its protection from the elements, will certainly eliminate the need to have the flying bridge enclosed in isinglass, but in areas where visibility is much more of a concern the flying bridge can certainly be accommodated for all-weather operations.
As Ocean Alexander continually evolves its product offerings, more recent iterations of the 72 Pilothouse offer full Garmin packages. These will include an 8500 Series Black Box with dual 19” (48.3 cm) touchscreen displays available for both upper and lower stations.
A GRID remote input device can be installed on the helm chairs. The system includes a 12 kW open array radar, a GHC 20 autopilot, a sounder, AIS identification system, and a closed-circuit camera system with two cameras in the engine room and one on the aft deck.Both stations control the 72 Pilothouse through hydraulic steering turning the stainless steel rudders. High-performance, computer-designed and machined class "S" propellers are just ahead.
Flying Bridge Helm
The center mounted flying bridge helm station features two Stidd custom seats that are fully adjustable for height and slide. They also have a recline feature which will be more convenient while running on autopilot particularly when controls are mounted on the armrests.
Main Deck Helm
The main deck helm offers protection from the elements as well as easy access to the side decks through a heavy-duty, watertight pantograph doors. Its centrally mounted location on the raised pilothouse deck also allows for clear sightlines to the stern, an important factor when operating in a busy waterway.A single, chocolate-colored helm seat is surrounded by plenty of open counter space for support equipment such as binoculars and chart kits that always accompany the prudent mariner. That being said, an optional chart light can be added next to the dash. An optional electric Stidd helm seat can replace the standard helm seat.
An optional aft control station is offered that provides much better visibility when backing into a slip. With an owner/operated boat, which in most cases also implies a shorthanded operation, it also gives easy access to the lines once the boat is in position.
The ground tackle is easily accessed thanks to the side decks and foredeck, along with high rails. The rails are all elliptical, making them easier to hold onto, especially with small hands. This is an important factor with children aboard. A hands-free anchor chain washing system comes standard and allows cleaning of the chain when hauling in the anchor.
Without a doubt, the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse is designed to be easily handled by an owner/operator. There are certainly parts of the world, such as the Pacific Northwest of the United States, where anything but is not even considered. Be that as it may, people living in other locations, or those with limited experience, thrive on having hired crew come along to do the busywork. For that reason, Ocean Alexander accommodated an option for crew’s quarters accessible from the swim platform.This cabin includes a Pullman berth that when flipped up provides 6' x 6' x 3' full height storage. The entire space is air-conditioned, includes a sink with storage cabinet, separate head, and mildew/leak proof shower stall with retractable stairs.Of course, even without a paid crew on board this will make a great place for the kids, who will love being in their own space.We recommend that most people opt for the crew quarters option as it will enhance both the price and speed of resale. It also enables the boat to be put into the charter trade.
The engine room is accessed from the crew quarters, which is in turn accessed from the protected swim platform. Standard engines include a pair of twin Caterpillar 1150-horsepower C-18s that are protected under Cat’s Concierge Program and 24-month warranty. These are the only engines offered.All thru-hull fittings are bronze and have sea cocks on the inside. They are electrically bonded to each other and connected to the boats grounding system.
The integrity of the engine room is protected
from the intake/exhaust fans with de-misters to eliminate moisture and keep the humidity level of the compartment low. Further, Ocean Alexander utilizes a proprietary "dry bilge ventilation system" that incorporates a dedicated bilge exhaust to the outside of the hull. This system keeps air flowing throughout the bilges so they remain dry and mildew free. Any moisture from condensation that may accumulate is evacuated to the exterior. All plumbing is easily identifiable by color-coding.
Important Standard Equipment.
Ocean Alexander utilizes a wet exhaust system with raw water intakes easily accessible. The 23 kW generator includes a five-year/2000 hour warranty. Fuel filters are mounted high on the forward bulkhead for both the mains and generator. Power takeoffs provide hydraulic pressure for both a 25-hp bow thruster and 15-hp stern thruster as well as the two 6 sq. ft. (0.56 sq. m) stabilizers and the 1,500-lb. (680.4 kg) capacity hydraulic davit on the boat deck. All these features are included as standard equipment.
The fuel system
consists of side tanks fabricated from 4.5 mm thick 5052 aluminum tested to international standards. Sight gauges give immediate indications of fuel level. Flame arresters are installed in the fuel system to prevent ignition of fumes during fueling operations. Fuel system vents have a "catchment system" designed to contain fuel from burps or overflows.
The freshwater system
is supported by a 2 mm thick 316-grade stainless steel tank holding 300-gallons (1,136 L) of freshwater. There are freshwater outlets in the engine room to replenish coolant for the main engines and generator. Additionally, on deck freshwater washdowns are located at the bow, stern and boat deck. Hot water is provided by a 40-gallon (151 L) hot water tank.
There are several upgrades available to the standard mechanical components.
The Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse has a LOA of 73'5" (22.3 m), a beam of 18’ 10.6” (5.77 m), and a draft that ranges between 5’ (1.5 m) and 5.5” (1.65 m) depending on load. With an empty weight of 110,000 lbs. (49,895 kg), 70% fuel and 4 people on board, we had an estimated test weight of 119,090 lbs. (54,018 kg).With a pair of 1150-horsepower Caterpillar C-18s turning 40” (102 cm) diameter x 38.5” (97.8cm) pitch Hung Shen Nibral propellers, we reached a top speed of 22.7 kn at 2350 rpm. At that speed we were burning a combined 118 gph, giving us a range of 260 nautical miles.
is basically subjective to how far the boat needs to run. In displacement mode, pulling the throttle back to 1250 rpm produces a speed of 11.5 kn, providing a range of 778 nautical miles, with a 10% fuel reserve. A check of nautical charts will show that one can get to most places – except trans-oceanic – with that kind of range between fuel stops. Be sure to check our performance table for more information.
At the Caterpillars recommended crew setting of 80% load, we were running at 2180 rpms and 21 kn. That speed reduced the fuel burn to 98 gph, giving us a range of 289 nautical miles, with a 10% reserve.
She handles well with excellent stability. Her heavy weight helps to remain relatively flat during turns and she clearly has large rudders as there is excellent control authority even at low speeds. At cruise speed she will come around 180-degrees in 20 seconds.
We had mild chop on our test day making it hard to comment on how she would handle in significant sea conditions, but the conditions that we did have still told the story of a boat that remains remarkably stable regardless of the directions the seas were coming from.
Probably her most significant handling aspect had to do with her docking capabilities. We brought her in and out of what was probably the tightest close quarters confines of any test to date with no hands-on experience with this particularly vessel.
She has a Keypower 12” (30.5 cm) 25-hp bow thruster and a 10” (25.4 cm) 15-hp stern thruster, both which offered minimal controllability in no-wind conditions. Our first lesson in such close confines show that the best use of the thrusters is to plan ahead, thrust early and hold the power on for an extended period. With this in mind we were able to control her quite efficiently and had her sliding into position with what needed to be surgical precision.
An Owner/Operator's Boat?
With this being designed as an owner/operator’s boat we had to ask ourselves if she can be easily handled by someone moving up to this level of yacht. Given that we were able to maneuver her so easily, and with little to no initiation into her handling characteristics we would have to say that Ocean Alexander has definitely made a boat that will make an easy transition for any owner, without requiring the need for a professional captain.
Base price of the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse motoryacht with standard equipment is $3,500,000, including freight, duties, commissioning and decor. In fact, it includes everything right down to fenders and lines.
The 72 Series of motoryachts has been around for about five years. Ocean Alexander is a continually evolving company that continues to upgrade its line of semi-custom yachts. Each 72 Pilothouse is semi-customizable and no two are the same.But what hasn't changed from one iteration to the next is that this is still a yacht for veteran boaters and people who are connoisseurs of quality motoryachts. She is not designed for casual running from port to port, but of course that can be easily done. Rather, the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse is intended for so much more. This is an offshore vessel designed to be lived on for months at a time while touring far-reaching locales. The 72 Pilothouse also represents a comfortable size for a boat being run by an owner/operator. She has easily managed systems and is easy to handle by a couple with perhaps one mate for washdown chores.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse (2015-) is 26.1 mph (42 kph), burning 118.00 gallons per hour (gph) or 446.63 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Ocean Alexander 72 Pilothouse (2015-) is 13.3 mph (21.4 kph), and the boat gets 0.66 miles per gallon (mpg) or 0.28 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 894 miles (1438.75 kilometers).
- Tested power is 2 x 1150-hp Cat C-18.
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Fresh Water||Standard|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
Boats More Than 30 Feet
|Oil Change System||Optional|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!
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