It’s big, handsome and seaworthy.
With plenty of living room, a long list
of comfort and convenience features
and the range and size to cross oceans,
the Nordhavn 64/68 series has proven
a popular trawler size, bridging the gap
between the Nordhavn 55 and the larger
Built on the same extended hull as the
aft pilothouse Nordhavn 68, the new forward
pilothouse version retains the same
interior layout as the Nordhavn 64, but
adds four feet (1.2 meters) of length to
the aft cockpit, increasing the outdoor
living (and playing) space to 191 square
feet (17.7 square meters). An additional
benefit—one that’s always appreciated—
is a larger lazarette.
Compared to the Nordhavn 64, the N68
forward pilothouse enjoys the advantage
of a slight increase in cruising efficiency
because of its longer waterline. Compared
with its aft pilothouse sibling, the forward
pilothouse version has a slightly larger fuel
capacity at 3,136 gallons (11,871 liters)
versus 3,110 gallons (11,772 liters) for the
aft pilothouse version.
Living on one level
The saloon, galley, cabins and machinery
spaces in the Nordhavn 68 forward
pilothouse are the same size and layout
as the Nordhavn 64. It’s an arrangement
that some people prefer over the
aft pilothouse version. “In this layout, the
advantage is you get the owner’s cabin
closer to the middle of the boat,” points
out Jeff Leishman, the Nordhavn 68’s
designer and chief designer for Pacific
Asian Enterprises. A cabin closer to the
boat’s geometric center sees less motion
and is therefore more comfortable at
sea and at anchor. Also, since the cabin
is located in a wider part of the boat,
it’s roomier. The teak or cherry joinery
used in the master and guest cabins, and
throughout the yacht, reflects PAE’s high
standards of workmanship. The head for
the owner’s cabin features a tile floor,
granite countertops and a teak vanity.
The other big advantage the Nordhavn
68 forward pilothouse shares with
the 64 is that the two guest cabins are on
the same level as the living spaces—the
galley and saloon. So, less time is spent
climbing up and down stairs—climbing
stairs can be a burden for older guests.
Having the guest cabins just a few paces
away from the owner’s cabin is also an
advantage if a family lives on the boat
and the cabins are occupied by children.
The starboard cabin is equipped with
bunks or twin beds and the port cabin
has a queen-size bed. The guest head and
shower are in the bow. Finished in teak,
with granite countertops and a tile floor,
it is accessible by doors in each cabin.
Saloon and galley
The roomy saloon, at 11 feet 3 inches
by 17 feet (3.4 meters by 5.1 meters),
retains the same space as the Nordhavn
64. To maximize living space, the saloon
extends the full beam of the yacht on the
port side. An 18-inch-wide (45 centimeters)
walkway leading from the cockpit
to the pilothouse and foredeck is on the starboard side, however a dual-walkway
version can be ordered. There are two
seating areas in the saloon with settees
and tables, as well as a large lounge chair.
Varnished teak or cherry wood paneling,
premium carpeting and upholstery and
soft overhead lighting make the Nordhavn
68’s saloon a relaxing place to
spend time on a passage. The four 26-
inch (66 centimeters) by 42-inch (106
centimeters), half-inch thick (1.2 centimeters)
tempered windows afford an outstanding
view of the changing scenery
outside. Like all good sea boats, handholds
are strategically placed throughout
the living area.
The 21-square-foot (1.9 square
meters) galley adjacent to the saloon
is fully equipped with first-rate appliances,
including a Sub-Zero side-by-side
refrigerator/freezer, and GE cook top
and stainless steel convection wall oven.
There are two additional GE freezers located
in the utility room. The bull-nosed
countertops are granite in the owner’s
choice of colors.
Up a short flight of stairs from the saloon
and galley is the Nordhavn 68’s pilothouse.
Though not as large as the aft
pilothouse version, its location amidships,
where motion is minimal, is
another advantage it enjoys. The pilothouse
measures a spacious 14 feet (4.2
meters) by 18 feet (5.4 meters), with a
generous 6 feet 9 inches (two meters) of
headroom. Paneled in varnished teak or
cherry, it has a settee and table, double
pilot berth where the off-watch can be
close at hand during night passages or in
inclement weather, and numerous cupboards,
drawers, lockers and bookcases.
It makes a great guest cabin when in port.
Eleven half-inch thick (1.2 centimeters)
tempered-glass windows offer a commanding
view in all directions.
The helm station features two Stidd
slimline chairs, an instrument console
6 feet 8 inches (2.03 meters) wide, with
plenty of room for instruments, gauges
and controls, and a 30-inch (76 centimeters)
Portuguese bridge and foredeck
Heavy-duty Dutch doors on either side
of the pilothouse open onto the Portuguese
bridge and boat deck. Another Nordhavn trademark and a necessity on
a seagoing boat, the Portuguese bridge
provides added security when one needs
to step outside in rough weather.
The boat deck’s location, up high and
aft of the pilothouse, affords more protection
in rough weather for the yacht’s
tender than the aft pilothouse 68 offers.
When it’s time to place the tender in the
water, the davit will set it down next to the
cockpit at the aft of the yacht, where it is
easily boarded via boarding doors in the
cockpit bulwarks, or from the swim platform.
And when it’s time to tie up or cast
off, skippers will find it’s a shorter run
to the foredeck from the pilothouse’s
mid-ship location. Control stations with
thruster and engine controls, located on
the port and starboard ends of the Portuguese
bridge and in the aft cockpit, take
much of the drama out of docking and
undocking. A set of steps provides access
to the boat deck from the cockpit.
The foredeck extends for 16 feet (4.8
meters) beyond the Portuguese bridge.
Twelve-inch high (30 centimeters) bulwarks
topped with 30-inch high stainless
steel railings extending all the way to
the bow, ensure a secure working environment.
The stainless steel double
bow roller holds a 300-pound (136 kilograms)
Airtex anchor on 400 feet (121
meters) of half-inch, high-tensile chain.
A Maxwell hydraulic windlass, with two
control stations, easily handles anchor
retrieval. There is even a high-pressure
wash-down system to get all the gunk
and mud off the chain before it comes
aboard. A nice touch that virtually eliminates
the onerous task of occasionally
emptying the chain locker and unplugging
a drain clogged by muck.
Flying bridge with a view
When the weather is nice, skippers will
want to conn the boat from the flying
bridge. Sitting a commanding 15 feet
(4.5 meters) above the water, it is easily
accessed using a stainless steel ladder
on the boat deck or by steps leading
directly from inside the pilothouse.
The flying bridge is equipped with a
full set of instruments and controls.
A U-shaped fiberglass settee aft of the
helm has seating for four around a
teak table. There is also a wet bar and
a Norcold refrigerator. This will probably
be a nice place to hang out and
share a sundowner.
Utility room and laundry
Stairs forward of the galley and saloon
lead to the utility/laundry room—another
feature missing in the aft pilothouse
Nordhavn 68. Countertops, with
drawers below and cabinets above, surround
three sides of the utility room, and
two GE freezers and Bosch combination
washer/dryer are located there. There
is also a day head. The utility room can
also be ordered as a crew cabin, with two
bunks (the lower one a double), a teakfaced
closet, drawers and a shower.
Ample room for machinery
The utility room leads to the engine
room through an insulated, watertight
door. With 192 square feet (17.8
square meters) there is ample working
space. Motive power for the yacht comes from a 425-horsepower, John Deere diesel engine turning a 42-
inch (106 centimeters) propeller via
a 3.5-inch (8.8 centimeters) Aquamet
shaft and a Twin Disc transmission with
a 3:43:1 reduction gear. A keel cooler
and dry exhaust are standard. Steering
is handled by a Kobelt hydraulic steering
system, while ABT digital stabilizers
keep everything on an even keel. The
38-horsepower hydraulic bow and stern
thrusters make maneuvering in tight
quarters a snap.
The engine room also houses a Lugger
L1066 diesel wing engine, with its own
prop shaft, folding prop, fuel and cooling
system, as well as the generator and
an optional Village Marine Tec watermaker.
Two 250-amp, 24-volt hydraulically
driven alternators supply electricity
for the yacht’s various systems, and an
additional 25-kilowatt Northern Lights
generator supplies power for AC consumers
such as the stove, refrigerator, freezers,
air conditioning and the washer/
dryer. Shore power comes aboard via
two 50-amp 240-volt receptacles and a
30-amp 120-volt receptacle. Two Glendinning
shore power cord retrieval systems
are also standard. Battery power
is supplied by twelve 225-amp Lifeline
8D AGM house batteries. Two 4,000-watt inverter/chargers handle battery
Although it is considered a production
boat, PAE will modify the yacht during
construction to accommodate the buyer’s
wishes; however, there’s not much
to add other than personal items, bedding
and provisions. The Nordhavn 68
comes fully equipped—flying bridge,
wing engine, generator, air conditioning,
stabilizers, davit, appliances, even the
plasma TV are standard. With so much to offer, there is no
doubt the new Nordhavn 68 forward
pilothouse, like its predecessor the Nordhavn
64, will be one of the most popular
boats in the Nordhavn fleet. More
capability, comfort and range can only
make it better.