Welcome to the next in our Yacht of the Month Series. This month we are focusing on Fountaine Pajot’s Helia 44.
Fountaine Pajot’s Helia 44 replaced the very popular Orana 44 and has been a key component of the Fountaine Pajot range for 6 years, only recently been replaced by the new Elba 45.
There are many features of “newer” design cats that were already incorporated into the Helia and she is an excellent charter boat in either the 4 cabin 4 head, or 3 cabin 3 head owners version.
You will particularly enjoy the elevated helm position, now often described as the hybrid. This gives better visibility for the helm when sailing or under power, especially forward to port which used to be a common blind spot in earlier cat models.
It also means that the helmsperson is still connected with the rest of the crew in the lower cockpit and salon. There are neat steps up to access the wide 3 person helm seat from the cockpit (which can also be accessed from the side deck).
There is much more up top in the form of a separate seating area next to the helm and a sun deck lounging area on the coach roof. This arrangement makes for very sociable sailing, but do make sure you’re seated though when you tack or gybe, as the upper seating areas do get a bit close to the boom.
The huge cockpit is fully covered with lots of seating; 8 or 10 for lunch would be no problem! There is also a relaxing day bed to chill out on under way or at anchor. There is single level connectivity between salon and cockpit giving a generous living space akin to a much larger (50 foot plus) catamaran.
At 44 feet the Helia feels spacious and is great for large families or groups of friends. But she is also designed to be sailed short-handed, maybe for a couple sailing by themselves or with young kids. The all important sail control lines are led back to winches just in front of the helm in a separate area. It means you can see the sails easily and both the helm or crew can operate the sails without cluttering the helm with endless lines.
Best vacation ever. Didn’t want to get off the boat! Greg and Laura (as always) made the trip flawless. They are part of our vacation planning always!!
With a powerful autopilot, and electric winch to hoist the mainsail, the Helia makes sail handling for two people very easy.
1,237 sq. Ft of sail area, coupled with a 10.8-ton displacement, and outstanding bridge deck clearance, makes her fast and comfortable under sail.
The hulls are vacuum-bagged, solid fiberglass and resin below the waterline, and a balsa-cored sandwich above. The deck is infused, which saves considerable weight and adds greatly to the stiffness of the structure.
The importance of this becomes apparent when sailing. This lighter, stiffer boat, translates to a more dynamic sailing performance and in 15-20 knots of breeze on flat water, you’ll do 8-9 knots happily.
Living aboard is a joy, even if it is just a week or two on charter! Going into the saloon area you see a spacious seating area, nav station and galley. Natural light streams through sky lights and expansive wrap around windows. She immediately feels light airy and delivers fantastic 360 degree views from inside the boat.
Another wonderful trip with Horizon as always. Can’t wait to come back.
The galley is very well thought out and is a great place to prepare lunch, dinner, snacks and the all-important rum punch! There is plenty of space to move around, plenty of storage cupboards and counter tops for food prep. With three refrigerators and a separate freezer, you will have plenty of space to store more than enough food to feed your crew for the whole trip. Chefs will be very happy on the Helia 44.
Accommodation below is spacious and delivers a perfect night of sleep after a sunny day on the water. The “owner’s version” has 3 large, private queen cabins, all are beautifully lit, ventilated, peaceful and private. The master cabin encompasses the entire starboard hull and offers an extra settee, a desk and ample storage. A large bathroom with separate shower is ensuite in the bow.
There are two other good Queen size cabins are in the port hull with ensuite heads and separate showers. In the four-cabin version the port side Queen cabins are replicated on the starboard side. Elegantly appointed throughout, and with full AC, electric heads, gives a luxury feel below decks.
Should you need to motor, the Helia is powered by a pair of 40-horse Volvo diesels with saildrives. She will do 7.5 knots at cruising rpm on smooth water.
Sailors from around the globe are loving the Helia 44 experience with Horizon. Here’s just a selection from our previous guests who have sailed the Helia 44 across our Caribbean fleet:
Overall FANTASTIC experience! From booking to making arrangements online, to the on-site service and experience at Nanny Cay, we could not have asked for more. Our boat, ALTAIR was incredible and for our family of 9, we couldn’t have been more comfortable. The kitchen is outfitted with every possible appliance and cooking utensil you could ask for. And the living space was spacious and perfect for group dining and interaction. The sleeping quarters and bathrooms were impeccable. The team at Horizon provided first class service at every interaction, and when we had a slight issue with our tender, they had a part to us and had it fixed within a few short hours. The boat briefing was really well done and “extra” briefing on fishing for our kids was most appreciated.We loved every minute and are counting the days until we can return again. We won’t charter through anyone else but Horizon after this experience. Well done, Team Horizon!
Great staff, easy to work with. Looking forward to our next charter here
Our available Helia 44 catamarans to charter in the Caribbean are shown here.
Your next charter:
- St Vincent & the Grenadines
To check availability for your next amazing sailing vacation in either the BVI, Grenada or St Vincent & Grenadines, connect directly with our Reservations Team below: