This year, the last exhibition of yachts and boats Boot Dusseldorf, in my opinion, was not particularly full of bright events when it comes to the presentation of first-class yacht novelties. There were, of course, some, but still not the “fireworks” of new boats. However, one exceptional event definitely deserves attention – this new boat caused such a stir that I have never seen before: people stood in long lines and waited 20 minutes to finally get on board and spend at least 5 minutes on the new Beneteau Oceanis 30.1.
Oceanis 30.1 looks pretty damn beautiful!
The French shipyard kept this new yacht a secret even from professional Beneteau dealers and two days before the show opened, the company announced the premiere of this entry-level yacht. The feedback was amazing: in fact, 8 out of 10 visitors at the Beneteau booth wanted to see this new “small-big boat”. Beneteau designers, architect Finot-Conq and interior designers Nauta Design have created a really cool boat.
New housing from Finot-Conq
Back in 2017, Oceanis 51.1 took on a revolutionary approach to hull design – adding a chine directly from the bow of the yacht to increase cabin interior volume and maintain a narrow V-shaped smooth wetted surface for superior sailing performance. As you know, the sailing yacht Oceanis 46.1, which quickly gained popularity and received the award as “European Yacht of the Year”, has the same properties. And now the hull of the new Oceanis 30.1 is designed using the same technology.
Cheekbones for extra interior space and a slim underwater profile. Brilliant.
The Oceanis 30.1 hull is 9.53 meters long and its maximum width is 2.99 meters, which is a magic number in Germany. Boats with widths starting from 3 meters need a special permit for the transportation of oversized cargo, which of course is associated with additional costs, and in Germany it is very expensive. Therefore, the width of the yacht 2.99 meters completely relieves the owners of this yacht from additional costs. By the way, no major brand offers such a graceful sailing yacht in the 30ft range. And trust me, what Beneteau has done inside is absolutely amazing for a yacht of this size.
Complete cruiser for a crew of 2-4 people
The very name Oceanis stands for the most successful line of ocean-going cruising yachts of all time. No shipyard has sold more sailing yachts and sailed more miles than Beneteau Oceanis. This is the heritage and value that go with this name and this initially sets the bar high for quality. But the new little Oceanis 30.1 has been a success. The Oceanis 30.1 is a true, complete cruising sailing yacht for a couple or small family.
Folding bathing platform, two steering wheels (I wonder who will need them). Very well.
Entering the boat from the stern, the owner and his guests are greeted by a large cockpit and two banks on the starboard and port side. The boat comes with a tiller as standard, but can also be equipped with two steering wheels. There is a folding table here, which I think won’t be there when the boat is tilted. Winches are located in the cockpit and on the roof of the wheelhouse. A plotter / compass is located on the coaming next to the salon entrance. But the real “wow” awaits us below.
The stunning interior volume of the Oceanis 30.1
The boat abounds in interior space. This two-cabin yacht has a huge – and I mean really huge – aft locker that can easily fit a folding bike. The Oceanis 30.1 salon is simply amazing. Nauta Design has once again gone to great lengths to convey the look and feel of the modern seventh generation Oceanis that has been so well received in the Oceanis 51.1 and its younger sister, the Oceanis 46.1.
An enduring wow feeling on this boat, only 9.53 meters long.
The interior of the yacht is filled with light, mainly thanks to two large portholes in the sides and two more portholes in the deckhouse roof. The bow bulkhead has double doors, and when they are open, the visual sense of space and light is even more intense. The pretty lightness of matte oak (although I am personally fed up with seeing oak on almost every boat lately) is enhanced by the fresh colors of the side panels.
Small navigator’s seat to starboard and a large galley.
Two 2.10m long sofas facing each other can serve as full crew bunks, and a fold-out dining table is large enough to serve a large dinner for four. A small table in the navigator’s place, facing the stern, folds on the latrine bulkhead and when it is removed, the sofa becomes even longer. There is plenty of storage space under the sofas. Speaking of real space, the Oceanis 30.1 galley is arguably the largest of its kind. Compared to the galley on the First 30, this one is truly huge: a large refrigerator, a large sink and plenty of storage space. Just great!
Really large galley for a boat of this size.
The feeling inside the boat is fantastic. The Oceanis 30.1 is CE certified for Category B and is therefore certainly great for beginners who are getting their first coastal sailing experience and want to sail a full yacht. Oceanis 30.1 is not just a boat, it is a real yacht. And that means comfort in every sense of the word.
The ceiling height in the aft cabin is 1.97 meters and in the forward cabin 1.87 meters. This height was achieved by skipping the floor for the bow and aft cabin, which I personally do not find very tragic, because the floor with the floor is simply not needed there. Usually, people enter the cabin only to quickly get onto the bed.
I liked the cozy, warm and welcoming atmosphere in the bow cabin.
The bow cabin – although the side windows would be fine here – is quite large for such a small yacht. The berth is V-shaped, slightly longer than 2 meters and there is enough space for two adults. Although I should note, the place in the bow of the cabin, behind which the anchor locker is hidden, is rather narrow. But on the other hand, this is a sailing yacht and with a thinner hull profile it will sail much better.
Large aft cabin, good padding.
The aft cabin has a small porthole opening into the cockpit and offers much more space for a good night’s sleep. I really liked the level of quality: although Beneteau specializes in the production of quality yachts at an affordable price, I was surprised to find completely bare GRP surfaces here. The cabin has good wood paneling along the side and quality upholstery. Well done indeed!
The latrine is gigantic for a boat of this size!
Another important point is the latrine, which – I repeat – is surprisingly large for a boat, up to 10 meters long. The toilet was installed in the direction of movement of the yacht, which, at least for me, was a revelation, since on most boats I went on, the toilet was installed sideways. A decent shower space completes the very positive feel of the boat’s interior concept.
What’s the catch?
Okay, so where’s the catch? Price? It can’t be – according to the shipyard, the cost of the boat starts from 70,000 euros excluding VAT and will cost about 90,000 euros in full set. There will be no fewer than four keel options available: standard keel, short keel, telescopic, or swing. Sail area? This is definitely enough here! Even the standard mainsail with a rectangular top has an auto-jib. The yacht can carry a large genoa, a Code 0 twist and an asymmetrical spinnaker. I simply could not find the obvious cons of this boat.
All the best, small-big Oceanis 30.1!
In the end I had a very positive experience with this little yacht. Beneteau was not only able to carry out this project in complete secrecy during nine months of development, but also managed to make a splash at the largest yacht show in the world in Dusseldorf. Bravo, Beneteau! I’d love to see this yacht on the water as soon as possible and test it under sail!
Author: Lars Reisberg