Expert opinions on Riviera’s flagship model, the 70 Flybridge
Riviera has received many positive reviews on its 70 Flybridge from leading boating magazines around the world. George Sass Jr from Yachting Magazine, Peter Scott from Go Boating, David Lockwood from Trade-A-Boat, Rebecca Hayter from Boating New Zealand, and Mark Rothfield from Club Marine had this to say about Riviera’s 70 Enclosed Flybridge.
“The Riviera 70 is designed to travel to distant shores searching for big game in posh comfort,” - George Sass Jr.
"Technology and superb craftsmanship have been combined to produce a simply stunning long range cruiser which proudly bears the tag 'Made in Australia',” - Peter Scott.
“Riviera’s new flagship is its magnum opus, its biggest work yet, with 70 feet of grunt and hitherto new levels of luxury,” - David Lockwood.
“The Riviera 70 provides luxury-style living, in the brand’s shapely lines and featuring well-designed ship’s systems throughout. She deserves her place as the flagship of the fleet,” - Rebecca Hayter.
“Spotting the new Riviera 70 Enclosed Flybridge at a crowded marina is as easy as finding the haystack with a needle, for it stands like a colossus above its peers, and its piers. Everything looks up to it, literally and figuratively. To step aboard is to enter the mythical “Land of the Giants”, Mighty ocean swells are magically reduced to mere ripples on a pond, while its own bow wave would keep Kelly Slater entertained for hours,” - Mark Rothfield.
“…some critics of larger convertibles will argue that, when landing big game, the maneuvering capabilities of larger designs can become an issue. I would counter that the angler should still do some of the work, and these critics haven’t been on the Riviera 70. During our test off Australia’s Gold Coast, I found she was as agile as some 50-footers I’ve run. She stays true even with one engine running and barely a touch of the wheel…The stern reacted effortlessly to bumps of the throttles and took on minimal water in the six-foot chop going astern. She turned nearly within her own wake at wide open throttle, while barely losing any speed,” George Sass Jr.
“The big Riviera will plane at speeds as low as 16-17 knots and will cruise comfortably at 26 knots with the Caterpillars purring at 1930rpm at just 63% engine load using a touch under 200 litres per hour. Despite the capacity of the power plant, this long range cruiser can run at 10 knots using just 19.7 litres of diesel per engine which gives the vessel a range of greater than 2000 nautical miles. Economy and range has certainly entertained the minds of Riviera’s design team in both weight reduction and practicality,” Peter Scott.
“...it’s not until you advance the throttles on the V12s that your world is transformed. Before you can say make mine white and one sugar, we are cruising at 30kts at 2100rpm, which is maximum continuous revs, and topping out at more than 33kts on the way home before the lopping swells. I slide the window open alongside the helm seat to get a better sensation of speed. Whooosssh! My sunnies are now in Davey Jones’ locker. It’s then I realise the power. Big boat, boat engines, big systems, big tickets on going places. Think big,” David Lockwood.
“Just for fun, Horgan (Dean Horgan of R Marine) put the hammers down hard from a standing start: there was a glimpse of 100% engine load and 360 litres per hour. Ouch! But, as Horgan says: “It’s pretty good to get 62 tonnes to get up and boogie like that.” And boogie she did, albeit sedately. Sure, she’ll spin in her own length, but only using her thrusters or engines in forward and reverse. At speed her turning circle is much bigger, but she maintained constant trim and power. Her hydraulic, power-assisted steering was smooth and responsive – a pleasure, especially in the fancy helmseat,” Rebecca Hayter.
“Underway, planning comes at 15 knots and the hull rides relatively flat – Frank Mulder has incorporated prop tunnels to reduce shaft angle to 11 degrees. At 1500rpm, with the two engines operating at 50 per cent load and burning a total of 240 litres per hour, speed builds to 18 knots. Come 2000 rpm, we’re talking 29.5 knots, 65 per cent load and a total consumption of 440 litres per hour. Wring another 300 revs from the Cats and speed climbs to 34.5…but they’re guzzling 720 litres all-up. At no stage did it feel like we were doing anywhere near that speed, so quiet are the engines and seamanlike the hull shape. It turns adroitly, with no loss of speed,” Mark Rothfield.
“If I were asked to summarize the below decks arrangement plan in a short sentence, I would just say that it works perfectly. The proportions, use of space, natural light, functionality, and fit and finish are just dialed in,” George Sass Jr.
“This is a near perfect long range planning hull cruiser. The Riviera 70 Enclosed Flybridge offers superb accommodation, practical onboard livability and genuine offshore sea going capability. The arrival of Australia’s premier long range production cruiser not only signals to the international marine community, our world class manufacturing capability, it has established Riviera as a genuine contender for the growing cruiser market,” Peter Scott.
“The flybridge on the 70 is akin to a penthouse, perfect for entertaining at calm anchorages and on the run, when not serving as the captain’s quarters or bedsit at night…the bridge is air-conditioned but there is also a rear awning or hopper window, side opening windows and an electric sunroof that changes the atmosphere from cocooned enclosed bridge to indoor/outdoor entertaining area,” David Lockwood.
“The raised saloon with large, all-round windows feels large and light. The quality is reflected in gloss cherrywood cabinetry, stainless steel window surrounds, square light fittings, electric blinds, and cute tricks like the electrically-operated glassware cabinet…The flybridge has beauty as well as brains. It is an alternative entertainment area, with L-shaped settee, coffee table and large LCD TV and DVD, and even a mini galley with spacious bench, sink, fridge, crockery stowage and ice maker. There is full air-conditioning, as throughout the boat, and a huge electric sunroof,” Rebecca Hayter.
“Proportionally and aesthetically, the 70-footer looks like a Riviera, feels like a Riviera. It was designed in-house, engineered in-house, and the furniture components were finished and varnished in-house. It’s all familiar, yet strangely different. Larger than life,” Mark Rothfield.
“On a 70-footer…I just think (enclosed flybridges) makes more sense than an open bridge. For starters the scale of a bridge on a larger convertible is big enough that the line of sight can be compromised, and often the sides of the boat are out of view. On the Riviera, the helm was all the way forward, on the centreline, and offered good lines of sight. The helm console itself rivalled that of a 100-foot-plus yacht with enough room for an aircraft carrier worth of electronics,” George Sass Jr.
“While this long range cruiser is a superb vessel with excellent sea going capabilities, as a long range cruiser, onboard facilities must equal if not exceed good boat speed and handling. Whilst Riviera have long held the mantle as the kings of interior design and fitout, Riviera’s designers have taken onboard living to a new level with the launch of the 70 Enclosed,” Peter Scott.
“By official definition, 70-footers weigh in as superyachts in this country and, as such, buyers expect engineering that wows. So I make haste and head to the engineroom, accessed via a cockpit door, whereupon I soon gain headroom and note walkaround access to the big V12 Cats,” David Lockwood.
“For offshore sea-keeping, the hull is a warped-plane monohull with half-prop tunnels and keel. Construction is hand-laid, featuring solid fibreglass below the waterline and a watertight collision bulkhead for’ard. There is extensive use of lightweight, cored bulkheads through the hull for structural integrity with minimal weight,” Rebecca Hayter.
“All controls lead to the engineroom, of course, where style meets engineering substance…Again highlighting its seaworthiness, the 70 has dual pumps for the hydraulic steering, one being a back-up. Should there be a primary steering failure, god forbid, there’s a joystick-controlled emergency unit. Speaking of steering, you’d think the big Riv was in pro skipper territory, but no. It’s easier to handle than it looks, courtesy of bow and stern thrusters and clever Twin Disc Quickshift gearboxes,” Mark Rothfield.
“If long-distance cruising or fishing is on your horizon, I encourage you to head Down Under. Riviera continues to build a quality yacht and with the 70, the builder is willing to work with each individual owner, which creates some interesting possibilities,” George Sass Jr.
“As a result of its launch Riviera will continue its reign as a world class luxury production boat builder – the Riviera 70 Enclosed Flybridge is simply that good,” Peter Scott.
“…it’s apparent that the big Australian boatbuilder has taken everything it has learnt over the years, observed the market closely and surveyed its overseas competitors to build the best 70-footer possible. I can say with conviction that the 70 doesn’t thump, it is dry, it’s a step up in class for Riviera. And so damn intoxicatingly comfortable we could cruise with, get this, coffee and cake in hand. Now try doing that on a 40 or 50-footer,” David Lockwood.
“The skipper had a clear view of the foredeck through the windows, and three cameras displayed the cockpit, saloon and engine room on Raymarine 120 screens on the dash. I appreciated this later when we berthed. I was on stem line duty and struggling to get the bight over the cleat when, magically, the cleat moved into place. The skipper had seen my predicament on screen and reversed to give me the slack,” Rebecca Hayter.
“The long and short of it is that the 70 is a genuine Aussie superboat. And somehow it’s fitting that our biggest production boatbuilder is now our biggest production boat builder in the true sense. That’s one small step for Riviera, one giant leap for our marine industry,” Mark Rothfield.
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This is a dream hull when it comes to performance - it is as racy and responsive as it is robust and reliable
The 70 was designed for long range cruising
The flybridge serves as a second entertaining area
The electronic sunroof makes the flybridge extremely versatile
There is plenty of room for entertaining on this oversized cockpit
The mezzanine lounge is perfect for alfresco dining
The 70 is the epitome of luxury
Riviera's 70 Flybridge has it all - size, style and performance