New Zealand couple Brian and Cath Carran are partners in everything they do so when it came time to design their dream boat, from the keel up for their retirement enjoyment, twin helm seats were a pre-requisite.
"We are like partners in everything so a sole helm seat wasn't an option," said Brian as he and Cath recently prepared their new boat, a Maritimo S70 motor yacht for an extended cruise in the Whitsundays.
After having spent a lifetime working in the supermarket sector in New Zealand a young, 19 year old Brian, could never have dreamt of such a magnificent retirement reward when he started out in his father's supermarket decades ago.
"I have been in supermarkets since I was 19 and three years ago, knowing my retirement plans were looming, we started our journey to secure our dream boat to enjoy life after years of hard work," he said.
"Up until then we didn't have the time to spend extended periods on the water and apart from annual trips to the Med, where we would cruise with friends, most of our boating was on our Beneteau 473
The journey to find their ideal boat saw the Carran's, who were long term yachties, look at trawler style vessels from the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show to the Sydney International Boat Show and they even considered a possible purpose build vessel at a yard back in New Zealand.
Their world wide search saw them also look at a Maritimo M70 cruising motor yacht and a trial run in big seas off the Gold Coast had them convinced that this was the sort of boat that would suit them. However, they did not want a flybridge vessel.
"We were very impressed with the way the Maritimo handled the rough conditions and said to them that we would be interested if they could produce a single level sport cruiser model," said Brian.
"That started the whole process and now our magnificent four cabin, single level sedan yacht called Waka Tete is a reality.
"They put together a mock-up of the boat originally and nothing was too much trouble for them so the whole process has been relatively hassle free."
The couple have poured over every inch of the boat in the design and build phase changing and adapting various things to end up with a bespoke vessel that suits them to a tee and is very much personalised.
They took delivery of their new boat from Maritimo this month, three months after Brian officially retired ,which was exactly according to the plan that they had laid out three years ago.
The boat, powered by twin Scania 900 hp engines, is luxury plus and the Carran's say it will be perfect for their family and friends to enjoy with them.
"Our son and his wife and the grandkids , Cath's brother and another son and his fiancée and her father have already been onboard at various times during our shake down cruise and we have both family and friends joining us for various times when we are in the Whitsunday's," said Cath.
While the engineering, performance and navigation side of the vessel has largely been Brian's domain Cath has worked tirelessly with Maritimo's fit out team and her New Zealand based interior decorator to create an atmosphere and environment of pure luxury within the vessel.
The bathrooms all have Corrian flooring, soft furnishings including bed linen are Italian fabrics, a floating breakfast bar in the galley, purpose designed tub chairs in the saloon and a plush l-shaped lounge specially made to measure so as not encroach on the companionway and special timbers sourced from Indonesia in the galley and saloon have all been touches the Carran's have made to personalise their boat.
"The state of the art galley is Cath's domain and I have the lazerette which is my man cave," said Brian.
The couple relocated the laundry from the cabin area to the lazerette and Brian also had the Maritimo team specially produce a 'floating helm station' that doesn't close in the companionway to the fully beam master suite below.
The couple plan to spend time cruising in the Whitsundays until near the end of October when the boat will be motored across the Tasman to its home port in Auckland.
Maritimo's CEO Garth Corbitt said the whole exercise with the Carran's from the start of design work and various initial concepts to the finish and delivery of the vessel had been both pleasurable and rewarding for the Maritimo team.
"We have worked with them every inch of the way and the end result is a truly world class sedan sports yacht," he said.
"They are thrilled with the result and our entire team is justifiably proud of what we have created."
He said since the Carran's S70 has been completed an order has been placed for a second one and interest throughout Australia and internationally is increasing. "This is a robust, true blue water cruising motor yacht that provides a living environment the equivalent of a luxury hotel and we are confident it will be a winner," he said.
As for the Carran's they plan to spend plenty of time side by side in their twin helm chairs exploring the waterways around New Zealand and further afield. .
Pictured: Brian and Cath on their new boat preparing to leave for the Whitsundays.