Close-spaced, and with spilling tops, the nasty three-foot waves I ran the Buzzards Bay 34 through would have presented a challenge to most any small boat. But this outboard-powered catamaran cruiser so gracefully navigated the white-capped drumlins that they might as well have been gentle ocean rollers.
To about 40 mph, the Buzzards Bay 34 delivered a ride smooth enough to keep the most lubberly crew members from complaining. It displayed fewer foibles than I’ve been able to wring out of other cats. That is, it didn’t resist course changes when one hull was buried while locked in a turn, and I couldn’t get the deck between the hulls to slam or to “sneeze” visibility-obliterating spray. A tall tunnel and a ramped underbody forward are primary reasons. The cat does remain upright in turns, which takes getting used to if you’re acclimated to the comforting lean of a V-hull. A cruiser, this boat is intended to make time waypoint to waypoint, not to perform whiplash turns, so this particular vice is of little consequence. That the combination of outboard power, twin displacement hulls and lightweight construction (both improving power-toweight ratio and allowing for narrower hulls) provides outstanding efficiency is sure to blow cruisers’ horns.
Fit and finish are of the finest kind. The Buzzards Bay wears the deep luster of clear-coated Imron in lieu of gelcoat. Attention to detail is just as evident, as with the teak trim rings finishing the 12-volt receptacles. Then there’s the ingenuity: The pilothouse sports a power rear window, opening up the salon to the cockpit at the touch of a switch.
A “couples” cruiser, its salon is open and huge, housing helm, galley and a lovely lounge that converts to a berth for occasional guests. Down to starboard is the stateroom with teak cabinetry and a warren of built-in stowage. Down to port is an amenable head with a shower stall and designer vanity and fittings. Fast and nimble, boasting long range and luxury, this boat serves equally well as a day boat or a vacationer.
Comparable model: Tiara Sovran 3500