Captain Jeff Lewis Reviews the Jeanneau 490

As a professional yacht delivery captain and sailor for nearly 50 years, I am often asked by new sailors, “What is the best sailboat on the market?”. This, of course, is a question everyone wants to know. My usual reply is, “The best boat on the market is the boat you will realistically use that you feel comfortable sailing.”

In order to select the best boat for you, is to truly and honestly assess what you will really use the boat for the majority of your time. So many people think they need a big boat that’s built for long range blue water sailing when they’ve yet to sail outside the local waters. To seek such a boat would probably quickly disappoint you.

I have owned boats of all types, power, sail, paddle… In all honesty, the majority of my time on my boats was always spent doing local trips, weekenders, and overnights to local destinations. I spent many nights at anchor or at a marina enjoying time with family and friends. Less than 10% of my time was spent doing a long distance overnight or multi-day trip in blue water (on my boats at least!).

I was asked to do an honest assessment of the Jeanneau 490 Sun Odyssey I recently delivered over 1200 track miles from Ft. Lauderdale to St. Thomas. I spent 90% in blue water and 10% nearshore. During those 8 days I spent offshore, we sailed on all points of sail, in various conditions from near gale force winds and 8-10′ seas and flat calm conditions.

Our first day was spent crossing the Gulfstream toward the Bahamas in 20kt Southeast winds. It was a lumpy close hauled ride, to say the least. We discovered that it is best to beef up the interior cabinet latches in this type of pounding. We managed to shore up the cabinet and drawer latches quickly. One thing I can say, I have sailed many Jeanneaus over many rough seas, through gales and can tell you without a doubt the hull and rigging on these yachts can take a pounding!

Later in our journey, we had an unfavorable wind shift causing us to close haul and tack to windward. I was impressed with how close to the wind we were able to sail and make good speed even in sloppy conditions offshore. We beat close hauled for nearly two days. I was convinced we would lose more than a day during this time, but surprisingly we made good progress to windward until we got more favorable winds as we dipped into the trades.

Our sail into the islands was fast on a close reach at over 8-10kts. in 6-8′ seas and 15-18kts. of wind. We arrived on schedule in the islands. One of our traditions upon reaching the Caribbean is to stop for a “swim call” for all hands. We anchored at Christmas Cove near Great St. James Island. This is where the 490 was in her true element! We dropped the massive swim platform and opened up the cockpit to a very comfortable open and breezy, shaded space for having our celebratory libations and a much-deserved swim in the clear, warm waters of the Caribbean!

The walk around, open continuous side decks from the cockpit at the helm to foredeck gave us plenty of room to walk without obstruction or awkward climb over the seat backs to the foredeck. We decided to see how the sunbeds worked in the cockpit and opened up the seats which turned the cockpit into a nice sunning/napping area. We brought up whatever was left of our provisions from the galley and had a great meal alfresco while
watching the other cruisers swim, play and sail about.

Overall, this is what the Jeanneau 490 was designed to provide! She’s tough offshore, some tweaking of the interior cabinets before a crossing, and she’s solid and tough as nails. A fun, spacious enjoyable cruising layout made for maximum accommodation for both fast, solid sailing performance offshore, then, relaxing in the harbor on the hook or in a marina.

Our time aboard had finally come to an end and we brought her to her new charter base at Virgin Islands Yacht Charters at Compass Pointe Marina. I have no doubt there are some happy charter customers that have taken her around the islands and lived quite comfortably during their explorations! We sure have come a long way since Sir Francis Drake plied those waters!

Delivering Excellent Service At Every Stage of Delivery

We are Atlantic Cruising Yachts, the largest, worldwide Fountaine Pajot Dealer and largest North American Jeanneau Dealer. From our streamlined commissioning process with staff on the ground in La Rochelle to priority pricing for our clients, we are making the dream of ownership a reality sooner and smoother.

Don’t just take our word for it, here is a list of all of our current yachts in various stages of delivery:

  • Two Saona 47s and an Astrea 42 loading on a ship in Southampton UK. This ship will drop one of the Saona 47s off at the Annapolis Spring Sailboat Show and then head to Palm Beach to place the other Saona 47 and Astrea 42.
  • A Saona 47 and Saba 50 just left La Rochelle and are sailing to Annapolis.
  • A Saona 47 is sailing to the British Virgin Islands.
  • A Saona 47 finishing up commissioning in La Rochelle and then heading to Baltimore to finish up commissioning in Annapolis
  • An MY 44 that just arrived in Palm Beach and is making her way to Ft. Lauderdale for local commissioning.
  • Two MY 44’s that are finishing up commissioning in Ft. Lauderdale – one of which will be heading to Annapolis
  • An MY44 and MY 37 will start commissioning in La Rochelle and then will be loaded in Southampton UK.  This ship will drop the MY37 in Baltimore and then sail to Florida.
  • A Saba 50 leaving by sea for Annapolis at the end of April

We pride ourselves on providing our clients with highly personalized buying experiences at each stage of the ownership process. The above list of in-progress yachts is just a few examples of different models and stages we are walking our clients through. We are fortunate to have such incredible clients who have great things to say about their experience with us – feel free to explore our client testimonials.

Inside the Buyer’s Journey: The Jacobsons (Fountaine Pajot Owners)

Purchasing a yacht requires a decent amount of research. Each buyer has specific, personal and logistical requirements for their yacht based on their sailing or motor experience. Working with a trusted yacht company, such as Atlantic Cruising Yachts, is the best way to ensure a smooth and enjoyable buying experience.

For Jake and Nancy Jacobson, their journey to new yacht ownership with us began in 2014. The Jacobsons met our team during the Annapolis Boat Show and from there decided to attend one of our Open House events. They ultimately decided to partner with us for their purchase because of our “supporting services and product”.

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Waypoints® Offer: Jeanneau Walk-Around Decks in High Demand

Jeanneau is making waves in the charter industry with the new walk-around decks on the Sun Odyssey line. With a lack of obstruction between the cockpit and the deck, there is more space for the captain and charter guests than ever before. The side decks slope down aft to the cockpit floor to eliminate the need to navigate coamings and biminis.

Because of the demands of these models in the charter industry, we are offering an exclusive special on the Sun Odyssey 410, 440, and 490* in partnership with our Waypoints® affiliate bases. For any of the three aforementioned yachts purchased for placement in the Business Yacht Ownership® program, Atlantic Cruising Yachts will advance and pre-pay 8 weeks of your charter income at settlement. This will be in the form of a check paid at settlement.

If you are looking to purchase a new yacht and offset 80-100% of the costs through our Business Yacht Ownership® program, this is your best opportunity. With 8 weeks pre-paid charter income, you can rest assured that you’re taking the most fiscally responsible approach to ownership. In addition, our list of approved Waypoints® bases are inspected regularly to ensure that your boat stays in pristine condition throughout the life of your charter business.

For more information, and to take advantage of this incredible yacht ownership opportunity, contact a yacht consultant today!

*Boat available for this program are as follows: Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 410 (2 or 3 cabins), 440 (3 cabins) and 490 (3 or 4 cabins).

Commissioning Elevated to New Heights

Purchasing a new Fountaine Pajot catamaran can be a highly complex project requiring orchestration of diverse groups and interests including the factory and its personnel, foreign contractors, shipwrights and suppliers, delivery crew, cargo shippers, insurers, lenders and governmental authorities. Our Commissioning Project Coordinator role is unique in the yacht industry, and allows us to better serve new Fountaine Pajot owners through this complex process of build, commissioning, delivery, and final handover.

Working on the ground in La Rochelle, France, the Commissioning Project Coordinator helps facilitate timely and effective communication between the factory, our French contractors and suppliers, our North American support teams, and of course our clients. Whether you’re seeking an updated timeline, photos of your new hull, or a guided tour through the factory, he makes the process simpler than ever by acting as your direct liaison. 

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The Abacos Islands: The Perfect Home For Motor Yachts

As a particularly frigid winter in North America gives way to spring, people are planning summer vacations to tropical places such as The Abacos, Bahamas. This 120 miles-long chain of islands are home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, quaint anchorages, and exceptional leisure activities. As the Boating Capital of the World, the islands are the perfect location for placing your new yacht into charter!

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6 Tips for Attending the 2019 Miami Boat Show

The 2019 Miami International Boat Show is quickly approaching! The show kicks off on Thursday, February 14 and runs through Monday, February 18. This incredible four-day event is bursting with exhibitors, on the water training, vendors, and much more!

You can stop by Booth 901 to talk to the Atlantic Cruising Yachts team who will be providing tours of the following Fountaine Pajot and Jeanneau yachts: Alegria 67, Astréa 42, Helia 44, Lucia 40, MY 37, MY 44, Jeanneau 51, Jeanneau 389, Jeanneau 410, Jeanneau 440, and Jeanneau 490. 

Whether this is your first time attending the show or you’re a regular, here are some tips to make the most of your trip:

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List Your Current Yacht with Us – We’ll Waive Our Commission

No matter how much you love your current yacht, you may be looking at bigger, better, newer models and thinking about starting 2019 with an upgrade. Every year, Jeanneau and Fountaine Pajot roll out new features, like the walk-around decks on the award-winning Jeanneau 490 and the innovative roof design of the Astréa 42When you’re ready to upgrade and transition to a new yacht, the Atlantic Cruising Yachts team can do so much more than help you find the perfect new yacht. We can list your current yacht for brokerage, get you the best selling price, and we’ll waive our seller’s commission. Here’s how it works:

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Flagship Yacht Ownership with the Crewed Yacht Charter Business Program

You have the desire and the budget for a magnificent flagship yacht from Fountaine Pajot, but are still interested in pursuing the most fiscally advantageous approach. The Crewed Yacht Charter Business Program might be for you. It is a unique opportunity to enjoy all the benefits of the luxury yacht lifestyle.

How does it work?

The Crewed Yacht Charter Business Program implements your yacht as a business, making it a tax-deductible business asset. With the potential to offset 80-100% of costs with income and tax advantages, the business model is a financially prudent route to yacht ownership. Atlantic Cruising Yachts has independent, certified financial planners who are experts in Business Yacht Ownership® and can meet with you to determine if your circumstances allow you to benefit. To get an initial understanding of how the business model works, sign up for one of our live Business Yacht Ownership® webinars.

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Join the Best of St. Petersburg, FL

When it comes to purchasing the yacht of your dreams there are a multitude of decisions to make. Do you choose power or sail? Compact or large? Is it for personal enjoyment only or will it be placed into charter? For yacht owners who utilize our innovative Business Yacht Ownership® program to significantly reduce the overall costs, placing their new vessel into charter is the nearly the final step of the process. With that in mind, the last question to answer is, where? Many owners select Sailing Florida Charters in St. Petersburg for the location’s year-long sunshine, thriving tourism economy, and experienced yacht maintenance specialists.

Fun in the Sun

Florida is known as the Sunshine State for a reason. With about 361 days of sun per year, their guests have ample opportunity to enjoy chartering on your yacht.¹ Located on the Gulf Coast, St. Petersburg, Sailing Florida Charters is nestled on the Tampa Bay with quick access to the ocean. The location offers easy cruising to a multitude of attractions including the Skyway Bridge, the Dry Tortugas, Fort Jefferson, Marco Island, Key West, and more! It’s a charter destination that packs quite a lot of vacation opportunities for owners and guests alike.

Statistics Don’t Lie

In 2017, Florida saw an all-time record of 116.5 million domestic and international visitors.² This year, there were over 33.2 million visitors in the first three months alone.³ Tourism has an incredible impact on St. Petersburg and the surrounding area’s economy, contributing $9.25 billion in annual spending and nearly 94,000 jobs.4 A thriving tourist economy translates to a profitable charter season for yacht owners. Vacationers are clearly seeking Florida’s year ‘round sunshine and warmth!

Outstanding Service

If the unbeatable experience Florida offers vacationers isn’t enough to convince you that St. Petersburg is the place to put your yacht into charter, then consider how pristine your vessel will be kept. The dock hands and staff at Sailing Florida Charters boast a reputation for their extensive industry knowledge, passion for maintaining yachts, and love of the sea. The staff is able to provide guests with tips for the best local dining and shopping options, in addition to top-notch anchorage points out on the water. Their outstanding customer service and boutique experience offered by Waypoints® will have charter guests planning their next trip before they even return to the docks.

Interested in placing your new Jeanneau or Fountaine Pajot yacht into charter? Learn how you can become a part of the Waypoints® fleet by contacting Atlantic Cruising Yachts.