Polish boatbuilders have been prominent at boat shows lately with high-end power and sailboats that have made their way to U.S. shores, like the Wave 58 sailing catamaran. Wave Catamarans was started in 2010 in Szczecin, the country’s third largest port, which is near the Baltic Sea. The Wave 58 Sta Ana was at the Miami boat show this year where this unique design attracted curious crowds, as you can see in this First Look Video:
Founded by two sailors, Bartosz Puchowski and Zbigniew Lodyga (head of design), Wave’s goal was to build cats that are light, fast and comfortable. That’s where experienced sailor and naval architect Mieczyslaw Szwed came in. The construction is an Airex foam and epoxy sandwich that is light but still is strong, and is built without using female molds.
The hulls are narrow below the waterline for less resistance going upwind but they barrel outward further up with serious tumblehome, creating the volume needed for a comfortable interior. This gives the Wave 58 a unique and slightly bulbous appearance at the dock. Wave reps insist that this rounded look, which is very different from production cats, is actually aerodynamic (Having seen no comparison data attesting to one shape working better than another, we can’t comment). Built to order, this new generation is available in a standard charter model, a highly customized owner’s version and a souped-up semi-racer with a carbon fiber spar.
Nowhere is the Wave’s uniqueness more visible than on the flybridge, elevated just forward of the cockpit and effectively centered above the cabinhouse. Five steep steps lead from the starboard side of the cockpit up to the helm perch. The angled helm dash is on the centerline and just ahead of a single swiveling seat. It’s on a T-shaped pedestal with enough room for a single MFD, two instrument pods, a compass and some gauges. The VHF mic is to port and the engine throttles to starboard.
A U-shaped settee wraps around the helm chair, providing seating for six to keep the captain company. Behind the settee is a raised sunpad, behind which is enough space for a couple of solar panels mounted on the composite Bimini.
Visibility from the helm is very good forward, and not bad aft if you duck under the settee and peak back to the transom corners. One thing I found challenging is that the steps from the cockpit lead up through the floor of the flybridge. When working with one of the two winches that are mounted on either side of the helm, it would be possible for someone to fall through the opening if they didn’t mind their step.
The cockpit below is also unique. Three settees provide seating for a dozen and a large table on the centerline will make dining al fresco very pleasant. A wide walkway behind the aft seat connects the port and starboard transoms, so foot traffic stays out of the social area. Two poles support the Bimini top and simultaneously provide good handholds when traversing from side to side.
A large electric winch is mounted on the support structure that holds up the flybridge module. This, along with an array of rope clutches, is used to raise and manage the mainsail. Of course, this means that you must descend from the helm to deal with the sail and that may not be easy if you’re in a hurry. Also, it’s virtually impossible to see the mainsail from here as it is raised so it will take at least two crew for this process; one to operate the winch and one to watch what is happening aloft.
Everything on Wave cats is custom made so there is much flexibility to the layout and an opportunity for each owner to make the boat his or her own. The Sta Ana model sleeps eight guests and two crew in five staterooms. There are also four heads with separate shower stalls and electric toilets. Two staterooms are in the port hull and three in the starboard. The extra cabin on that side can be used for kids when the vessel is owner-operated, or for crew. Three large vertical hull windows make the cabins bright and add an upscale feature usually seen only on very large yachts.
The saloon and galley share the main deck. A dinette for six (although Wave representatives say the glass table will accommodate 10) is to port. A spacious galley fills up the starboard side and has all the necessary chef’s tools including a standup side-by-side refrigerator, a stainless-steel sink, and acres of countertop workspace. Wave has eschewed traditional layouts and the way the saloon dinette melds into the galley works well, although the space is quite full of furniture.
A sizeable standup navigation station is tucked into the aft port corner just next to one of the two sliding glass doors that connect the interior with the cockpit. Wave seems to have rethought just about every detail and anyone looking for a non-traditional approach may find this cat to their liking.
Polish shipbuilding has a long and rich history, and today, with reasonable labor rates and highly skilled craftsman renowned for their upscale finishes, is getting high praise in the U.S. market. With this second model, Wave is positioning itself to join other Polish brands like Sunreef and Galeon that are getting noticed and making waves on this side of the Atlantic.
Other Choices: The Privilege 615 is a slightly larger sailing catamaran with a more traditional look and feel. The TAG 60 is another unusual cat, but this one has foils and is performance-oriented. A slightly smaller option would be the French-built Outremer 51.
See all sailing catamaran listings.
For more information, visit Wave Catamarans.
|Fuel capacity||200 gal. (approx.)|
|Water capacity||300 gal. (approx.)|