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Cruise in Style on a Classic Yacht

Kairos at sea

Two years ago we walked into cruising section at the travel show in Berlin to find ourselves looking at a display of photos showing a rather elegant yacht, sleek and long, the very epitomy of stylish sailing.  Having a weakness for such craft we stopped to find out more and got chatting to Barbara Narr, Sales Manager for Sailing-Classics,  who told us the story behind Kairós

She is the vision of Andreas Steidle-Sailer.   From childhood, as he admits, he was lost to the sailing bug, racing Olympic class Finn dinghies and Dragon keel boats on Lake Constance and later with a friend restoring a 1923, 75er national built of mahogany and teak.  Add to this classy company his fascination with thoroughbred yachts like the British and American J Class giants that raced against each other for the America’s Cup in the 1930′s, and the boats of designers such Fife and  Herreschof and Alden with their exquisite lines and lofty rigs and the scene is set.  There were many like minded people who dreamed of cruising or taking a hand in sailing these classic yachts; but as Andreas observed to do so you had to charter the whole boat.  What if it were possible to take just a cabin in such a fine craft and yet cruise as if it were your private yacht?  The idea was underway.

From the start the challenge was to design a boat that embodied the style of the great yachts, yet could be easily handled by a crew of six; one with traditional looks combined with every modern comfort and the latest in safety equipment.  Practicality dictated that she be a new build in steel and for ease of handling a 2 masted Bermudan Schooner rig was choosen.  The architect was a young German, Klaus Röder Tutzing, who had also trained as a boat builder.  After considering shipyards in Holland, Italy, Poland, Turkey and the Ukraine it was decided to have her built in Bodrum, Turkey and in 2005 with the building contract signed the hard work of bringing her into being began.  Two years and for Andreas many miles of travelling later Kairós was launched on 14th April 2007.

Kairos cabins & crew

At 38m in length she’s a good size and can carry 18 guests.  There are 9 double cabins, all ensuite. Each comes with a story being named after a famous yacht, Altair was a 1931 Fife Schooner, Endeavour, the J Class yacht built for Thomas Sopwith in 1934 …. A traditional saloon provides comfortable seating and houses the essential ship’s library, a plasma TV and range of DVD’s for entertainment. While above deck guests can make the most of sailing and relaxing in beautiful anchorages with wide flush decks and a cockpit that can seat 18 for dinner under an awning. Good food and convivial conversation, in English and German (the on board languages), are very much the ethos.

Kairós sails in the Caribbean in winter then crosses the Atlantic for a summer season in the Mediterranean.  The cruises are a nice mix of  relaxed cruising, more active sailing and special interest cruises with a guide on hand.  Themed cruises might focus on the history of an area, wildlife watching or capturing the action on camera.   In April Kairós sailed alongside the yachts racing in the Antigua Classics with Mattias Müncheberg, photographer and chief editor  of the journal Sailing Mattias Müncheberg a board giving advice on getting a great shot.  Some cruises are also family based and planned to include children.  Barbara tells us with the sailing cruises there is no fixed schedule, and while the skipper has the final say, it’s like having your own yacht sailing from bay to bay, dropping anchor for lunch, a leisurely swim off the boat – now this, as I keep hinting to sailor husband, sounds like my kind of sailing. All are welcome both, couples and singles – Barbara can advise on the best cruises to suit your taste.

This summer Kairós is cruising the coasts of Andalucia in Spain and Liguria, Sardinia and Sicily in Italy.  Cruises are usually a week long  The ones that are catching my eye are the Whale and Dolphin watching cruises in the Straits of Gibraltar.  The waters of the Straits are particularly rich supporting seven Species of cetaceans nearly all year round.  Kairós makes a splendid viewing platform and she’ll be sailing with a researcher from Firmm, a foundation that has been studying Whales and Dolphins in the Straits since 1998. There are opportunities to catch these cruises at the end of May/beginning of June and then again at the end of October.

So are you feeling the sea breeze, seeing the bow wave ripple along the so smart white  hull as Kairós slices through the water? I think I’m smitten, I’ve already planned a  suitable sailing wardrobe.

Kairos cruising grounds



Spain (Strait of Gibraltar – Malaga – Mallorca)
22 – 26 May:  Watching Whales and Dolphins Strait of Gibraltar € 950 / 850
26 May – 02 June Watching Whales & Dolphins Strait of Gibraltar Family Cruise € 1.850 / 600
02 June – 09 June Watching Whales & Dolphins Strait of Gibraltar – Malaga € 2.100 / 1.900
10 June ‐ 15 June Malaga to Mallorca Pure Sailing € 1.050
15 June ‐ 20 June Mallorca to Portofino(Italy) Pure Sailing € 1.050

Italy (Liguria – Sardinia – Sicily)
23 June – 06 October Variety of week long themed and sailing cruises
Prices for A Category Cabin from €1950 – 2250 depending on cruise.

Prices are per person in a double cabin and include full board, water, tea and regular coffee.  For more information, details and costs of specific cruises please click here to contact Sailing-Classics.