We have now had Renaissance (Hanse 415) for over six months so I thought it was a good time to reflect on our journey. 

After sailing as crew on yachts for many years, an absence for too many years and much encouragement from wife Jennie and family, I decided it was time to get my own yacht. I wanted a yacht that could used for comfortable cruising, be sailed short handed yet still be fast enough to be competitive in club racing. We are also keen to get our children, and eventually grandchildren involved. We chose a Hanse as they are purpose designed for a self tacker, they have great lines, are roomy, comfortable, well fitted out and perform well.


We took delivery in Melbourne in May 2014 and with the help of Nick Jones and Allan Bridge sailed her down to Martha Cove at Safety Beach. Delivery video on web site shows off our hot pink gennaker and a speed of 9.1 kts. Since then we have competed in the Safety Beach Sailing Club (home club) winter series coming 4th overall. We are now into the summer Friday night series, no kites.


Jennie, who is not a sailor, has taken to sailing like a duck to water. She comes out most races, is very enthusiastic, competitive and is even giving me advice now. Friday nights usually involves dinner at the club or a BBQ on the boat.  We stay on board after as the berth is only a few minutes walk from the club. Below decks she is very roomy and comfortable. We have the two berth, two head layout with long galley and second fridge. Plenty of bench space, sitting and eating areas and a great shower. A home away from home.


Performance wise Renaissance seems to like at least 10 knots of breeze and really starts to lift her tail in 15+knots. We have been able to carry full rig upto 20 knots without rounding up issues and yet remain dry. In lighter airs she struggles a little against other yachts with genoas. May have to consider one for a little extra performance plus give the crew a bit more to do. Tacking is so easy and fast with the self-tacker.


We now have a regular crew of three and are getting to know the boat better and what works or doesn’t work. We have been fortunate enough to have Nick Jones, Windcraft Melbourne Manager, come out with us a couple of times to give us a few pointers. Nick is doing a great job down here and nothing seems to be too much trouble, whether it be a bit of advice, a small repair or a helping hand. We have yet to do any cruising but so far are more than happy with our decision. Renaissance meets all our criteria and we are getting so much enjoyment from her.


Thanks Mary for your help and sound advice on fit out and to Nick for everything he has done since arriving in Melbourne.


Best Regards, David and Jennie