Since 1997, naval architect Rob Humphreys and his team of in-house designers have been adding to and refining Oyster’s stable of fine offshore cruising yachts up to 85 feet in length. Over the years the team developed a fine and very successful pedigree of yacht, especially in the 61- and 62-foot range.
But times and tastes change. To meet the demand for a somewhat sportier and spacious yacht, Humphreys’ team has introduced an entirely new hull design with improved performance, greater interior layout options and an easily handled rig for 2011.
The new Oyster 625, which debuted in London this past spring, has been nominated for the best Luxury Cruiser in the European Yacht of the Year awards — an award granted after careful evaluation by a group of sailing journalists representing 11 European magazines.
A significant change
The new lines of the 625 are a significant change compared to the 61 and 62 footers. The 625 is designed for live-aboard comfort for family and friends with the option of having the forepeak configured for a full-time crewmember — the smallest yacht in the Oyster fleet to offer this.
The main accommodations aboard the 625 feature two forward cabins (port and starboard), and an enlarged owner’s cabin. Each are equipped their own en suite shower, head and sink. The owner’s cabin has been enlarged thanks to the fuller aft sections of the hull design. There is a centerline king size bed, starboard settee and a vanity/desk. Locker and drawer storage is voluminous. The owner’s cabin also has an option of a sliding companionway access from the cabin to the aft deck.
There is also a fourth cabin, aft and to starboard that can be configured as an additional guest cabin or serve as a ship’s office with direct access to the owner’s quarters.
The port galley is fitted with ample pantry and dishware lockers, Avonite countertops with molded fiddles, a Force 10 gimbaled stainless steel five-burner range with grill and oven with harbor lock, Frigomatic front-opening stainless steel refrigerator and Frigomatic top-opening stainless steel freezer (with icemaker), electric galley sink discharge pump and calorifier hot water system (engine and 220V). There is also a dishwasher and a full-sized washer/dryer.
From the galley there’s easy access to the saloon which has a full seating and dining area. In addition to the overhead and side pilothouse windows, three large vertical “seascape” portlights in the hull, to port and starboard, further enhance the views out of the saloon and give the new design a superyacht feel. The interior is Shadow Gap style and finished in white oak with teak, cherry or maple as an option. Twin tone veneer detailing and wide sole margins give the interior space a light airy feel. Sole boards are teak and rubber mounted for sound dampening.
The interior design is by Jo Humphreys. All of the saloon upholstery is Alcantara fabric. The yacht is fully air-conditioned and has satellite TV and wireless Internet.
On deck the Oyster 625 features a modern bulwark profile with integral stanchions and mooring cleats. The results are wide, uncluttered side decks with ample stainless steel grab rails on the low-profile, sleek pilothouse and around the dorade vents leading to a full flush foredeck. The aft deck is also wide and uncluttered, especially if the owner forgoes the optional aft cabin companionway. The aft deck has rail mounted stern quarter seating and a step through to the sugar scoop swim platform. Stainless steel tender davits are an option. All decks are finished in teak for maximum traction and a contrasting, classic look.
The 625 supports rig options of cutter rig, double headsail and in-mast furling by Seldén. The mast is a keel stepped Seldén silver anodised semi-fractional sloop rig with slab reefing fully battened mainsail including lazyjacks as standard equipment. Mast cars are by Frederiksen and are ball-raced.
Sails, including the fully-battened main, are radial cut Pentex Cruise-Laminate. With a displacement/length ratio of 182 and a sail area/displacement ratio of 22.3, this Oyster delivers great performance and comfortable passagemaking. Oyster offers several keel options for the 625 including standard, shoal or super-shoal keel.
Deck gear includes a single point 2:1 clear deck mainsheet system, Lewmar winches, racing blocks and other deck gear. The anchor windlass is also by Lewmar.
Twin cockpit layout
There is a walk through twin cockpit layout and twin wheel steering featuring identical custom GRP pedestals with Whitlock Mamba torque rod and gearbox steering system and SIRS compasses.
For auxiliary power the 625 has a Volvo D4-180, 180-hp marine diesel coupled to a Aquadrive drivetrain turning a four-bladed folding Bruntons Varifold propeller. A 115A DC alternator is dedicated to charging engine start batteries while a Mastervolt DC alternator 150A/24v with Mastervolt Alpha Pro three-stage regulator is dedicated to charging the house batteries. Bow thrusters are powered by a dedicated battery bank. The genset is an Onan 9.5 MDKBM (220v at 50 Hz) unit. All of the navigation equipment aboard the 625 is from Raymarine and includes Raymarine autopilot for the Whitlock Mamba drive.
The Oyster 625 is a yacht that boasts a superyacht heritage. Its modern styling almost belies its ability as a blue water voyager that can easily be sailed by family and friends.