Safehaven Marine have delivered their second XSV20, aptly named ‘Safehaven’ commissioned by and built for Jack Setton. Jack is very well known in the Superyacht World previously being the original owner of among others the 194ft expedition superyacht ‘Senses’ and was intimately involved with her design and specification during her construction. XSV20 has an innovative and unique hybrid hull design seamlessly fusing an asymmetrical catamaran with a wave piercing mono hull combining the stability of a catamaran with the rough weather capabilities of a deep V monohull. The design incorporates a Hysucraft hydrofoil system allowing her to run very efficiently at high speeds, and is powered by a pair of Caterpillar C18 1,150hp engines through ZF 500 gearboxes with propulsion by Marine Jet Power Hybrid 350 waterjets. A full Humphree interceptor trim control system allows precise control of her trim enabling her to operate in both ‘wave piercing’ and conventional high speed mode. During sea trials she achieved a very impressive, considering her 23m length, maximum speed of 45kts. Long range fuel tanks provide her with extended offshore voyage capabilities and a 500nm range.
‘Safehaven’ is fitted out to a very high standard with a very clean, minimalistic but luxurious interior design incorporating three separate below deck forward sleeping cabins and a spacious main cabin incorporating SHOXS military spec shock mitigation seating for her ‘driving area’ and a full concealed galley and comfortable dinette sette in the living area. Twin Dometic 27,000btu air conditioning units powered by her 18kw AC generator ensure her cabins are kept cool in hot climates. A flybridge provides a second commanding helm position and she carries a crane launched 4m RIB on a large dive platform. A spacious aft deck also incorporates seating areas converting to loungers and a large sun bed.
After launch and in preparation for her long delivery voyage and anticipating that the ‘Biscay’ leg could offer some challenging conditions she was tested in Safehaven Marines inimitable style during a pretty nasty storm that hit Ireland just after she was launched, bringing 40kt winds and 6m waves allowing her to be properly ‘sea trialled’ as evidenced by some spectacular accompanying photos and video.
‘Safehaven’ sailed from East Ferry marina in Cork Harbour on Sunday morning to begin her 2,500 nautical mile delivery voyage to meet her owner Jack in Sardinia, Italy. With a good forecast for the first leg of the voyage across the Irish Sea she headed off, making landfall in Brest later Sunday night after a relatively calm crossing with only a 2m long following sea to push her along nicely. Refuelling in Brest wasn't easy, as the only available fuel pump during the night allowed a maximum of €150 per fill, so multiple refuelling son credit card took a few hours to put the 3,000 litres of fuel needed to top her up for the long Bay of Biscay crossing, casting of from Brest at 3am. It's always quite stressful watching a boats progress from ashore as without satellite communication as ones dependent on AIS to track her progress and heading out on an ocean crossing she would drop off AIS coverage ones some 40nm from land, not appearing again many hours later as she makes landfall close to her destination. As such it was a relief to see her pop up again on AIS as she neared Gigion, where the Gigion pilots, to whom Safehaven had supplied one of their Interceptor 42 pilot boats to in 2017 were very kind and came out to escort her into their fuel berth so she could refuel. Casting off shortly thereafter for another night passage round northern Spain and down the coast of Portugal to Lexioes, again another Port Safehaven had supplied a pilot boat to several months earlier who helped arrange refuelling, after which the crew enjoyed a detour up the Douro river in Porto to take in some sights including the spectacular bridges that transverse the Douro river, and a chance to first fly their drone and begin to capture some spectacular imagery throughout the voyage.
Heading off again down the coast of Portugal that evening and through the night, refueling at first light in Vilamora, before continuing onwards and passing Gibraltar in heavy fog that evening, before berthing for the night in Porto Banus, Southern Spain. After an early morning refuelling it was a bumpy crossing at times along the Med, ironically being rougher at times than the Atlantic and Biscay passages, which originally were expected to be the most challenging legs, which just goes to show how hard it is to predict the weather, which in fairness overall was fantastic so far, but the long range forecast showed a very strong 40kt Mistral wind due to develop in a few days time, which, if progress didn't continue on schedule would mean a very rough passage on the final leg, manageable for the boat and crew, but still for sure undesirable. So after refuelling in Cartagena, and a break and rest whilst they waited to be joined by Safehaven's managing director and the designer of XSV20, Frank Kowalski for the final Med legs, they headed off for Ibiza. Arriving around 3am, the only available berth saw them tied up for the night somewhat incongruously between two $100 million super yachts, and after paying the frighteningly expensive berthing Bill the next morning and refuelling, they headed off for Palma on a magical passage with mirror calm seas, an epic sunset and a star filled night.
Unable to secure any berth at all in Palma, after refuelling they headed off for the 350nm leg to her final destination in Sardinia. Jack was constantly in touch through the trip and knowing they would make landfall early the next morning he took his Princess 60, and his 50ft RIB to meet ‘Safehaven’ at the north eastern tip of Sardinia where he anchored up for the night to await their arrival. It was a lovely moment for the crew to see Jack on the horizon as they made landfall, and tie up alongside for breakfast in beautiful turquoise blue waters. With Jack coming aboard to take ‘Safehaven’ on the last leg via some beautiful anchorages in Corsica to her new home port of Porto Cervo, where she tied up that evening after completing an epic 2500nm voyage pretty much non stop. During the voyage she was run at around 23kts as most of the passages were during the night, and this being a safe speed to run at on radar, with only the shorter daytime legs being where she could stretch her legs at her 30kts+ cruise speed. Also, on such an unusual non stop underway passage without the normal cruising variation in speed, the crew were conscious of keeping the engines ‘average load’ percentage within Caterpillars duty cycle so as to deliver her to Jack with only a light 40 percent load factor.