Designer Tony Castro penned the Galeon Yachts 440 Fly, a yacht that looks long, lean and fast, even at rest. And beyond the vessel’s sleek profile is a nicely appointed two- or three-stateroom, two-head layout with multiple entertainment and lounging areas—far more creature comforts than you’d expect to find aboard a boat with such a slender appearance.
Castro achieved this sleight of hand in two ways: First, he covered the topside windows with a black slash that runs nearly the length of the yacht to bring light into the staterooms. The slash also lowers the visual height of the topsides considerably. Second, he surrounded the flybridge with glass. You’d expect the Venturi windscreen forward, but he also used glass on the sides, essentially making the bridge invisible. Squint at the 440 Fly, and you’ll see an express cruiser with no bridge, and yet the flybridge is sizable.
There’s also a lot going on in the cockpit, starting with the outdoor cooking features (optional but essential) built into the transom. Both cockpit sides butterfly outward to create terraces, expanding the cockpit’s width from less than 14 feet to 19 feet. These terraces have glass sections that offer side viewing from the cockpit seats when the 440 Fly is underway. When the sides are down, there are wonderful views into the water.
Triple folding doors open the salon fully to the cockpit, with a settee to port facing a dinette with a reversible back to add to the cockpit seating. Up two steps is the galley-helm level. The galley is to port with a clear rail that protects the countertop and with a window that lowers electrically for fresh air.
At the helm is a diamond-stitched, bolstered double-wide seat abaft a free-standing dash that holds twin Raymarine multifunction displays and the Volvo Penta engine panel. An oversize side door allows easy access to the side deck. The 440 Fly that I was aboard had Side-Power bow and stern thrusters, which got us off the dock easily in a strong breeze. The skipper also has a great view through a one-piece windshield.
The 440 Fly that I toured had the two-stateroom layout. The VIP forward has 6-foot-7-inch headroom, and a queen-size berth or scissor berths that come together to form a nearly king-size width. The en suite head has a stall shower that stretches 5 feet in length and more than 2 feet wide.
Aft, the master stateroom has a nearly king-size berth slightly offset to provide space for rows of lockers to port and a vanity to starboard. There’s also an en suite head with a stall shower.
The flybridge is another surprise, if only for the double-fold table that could easily seat a dozen guests (with a couple of folding chairs). Steps to the bridge are gentle and have good handholds for safe transit. A wet bar, a grill, a fridge and a sink create a third cooking station. Forward is a duplicate setup of the lower-helm controls and another double-wide seat, with an L-shaped settee opposite for guests.
On the foredeck, a sun pad large enough for three guests morphs into lounges with folding backrests or into a forward-facing seat. Double-welded rails surround the foredeck, while the narrow side walkways are deep for security.
The 440 Fly that I got aboard had the standard twin 480 hp Volvo Penta D6 direct-shaft diesels and a 12 kW Fischer Panda genset tucked into a sound shield. (Twin 600 hp diesels are optional.) Access to the engine room is via a cockpit hatch, with a ladder leading to a walkway between the engines. There’s not a lot of room, which will require extra caution when the engines are hot, but the normal service checks are all easily reached.
With a half-tank of fuel, this 440 Fly topped out just shy of 25 knots, though I suspect we could have bettered that a bit by tinkering with the Lenco automatic trim tab controls. The diesels consumed 46 gph with the hammer down, and the noise level at a comfy 16-knot cruise was 78 decibels (65 decibels is the level of normal conversation). Most sound was the bow wave resonating through the open helm door. With that door closed and the cabin buttoned up, the sound dropped to 70 decibels, about the same as classroom chatter. With the door open or shut, there was no problem talking across the salon.
Handling? Just plain fun. The 440 Fly is responsive to power helm input. On the Intracoastal Waterway, it was a joy to spin donuts and cross this yacht’s wake at full throttle. Despite typical Gulf Stream chop offshore, we had no need to use the windshield wipers. The 440 Fly throws spray out flat to the side.
The Galeon Yachts 440 Fly is a delightful addition to the builder’s flybridge lineup, which also includes a 400 and a 500. With full service and parts from the MarineMax dealer network, this flybridge yacht is ready for cruising with family or good friends.
Under the Hood
The Volvo Penta D6 diesel is adapted from the manufacturer’s truck engine, which is known for solid power, strong torque and high reliability. An in-line six-cylinder, 5.5-liter, 336-cubic-inch block puts out 480 hp using common-rail fuel injection, dual overhead camshafts and a turbocharger.
Swim Platform Plus
The 440 Fly’s hydraulic swim platform lowers into the water for swimming, or to stow and launch a tender or personal watercraft. There are two ways to enter the water: With the platform up, a folding ladder can be used. When the platform is lowered, stairs automatically emerge.
Take the next step: galeonyachts.us