Classics never go out of style.
Carver Yachts’ latest version of the classic 36’ flybridge motor yacht – their C36 Command Bridge – offers quality construction, ingenious use of space and luxurious finishes in a production yacht. Let’s begin at the flybridge deck and work our way down to a unique hull design.
Up top, the 360-degee visibility offered by the flybridge is hard to beat whether you’re cruising the Great Circle or watching the grandkids play in the anchorage. The upper helm is to starboard and features a double-wide bench seat for cuddle-cruising and plenty of room to add your choice of electronics. There’s an l-shaped sofa to port and a forward padded seat up against the plexi windscreen that is great for little kids or unfolding a cruising guide. An optional bimini with full enclosure offers both shade protection and a 12’ 7” bridge clearance when lowered. Aft, you’ll find a large double-wide sunpad and a set of molded-in fiberglass stairs down the starboard side to the aft deck.
On the main level you’ll find the cockpit sofa and table to be a delightful place to dine under the overhead hardtop featuring LED lights and stereo speakers as the sun sets. Walk through the double French doors and step down into the cabin, and you’ll be greeted with a large u-shaped sofa to port and a well-equipped galley on the starboard side, all wrapped in large windows for a bright open feeling. The forward windows open for those days that you don’t need the onboard air conditioning and generator on. An optional lower helm station is available, but I’d prefer to brave the occasional few hours of bad weather for the extra cabin space.
Down a couple more steps, the master stateroom is directly forward behind a solid door and features an island berth with long narrow windows on either side for amazing visibility. The only head on board is to port, features a completely separate shower with wonderful headroom and integrated seat, and feels much bigger than it measures or looks on the layout diagram. The solid entry door to the guest stateroom is to starboard. Stepping inside you’ll find there is room to stand to dress, a locker, twin beds with a filler cushion, generous headroom and plenty of light.
The hull itself carries the C36’s thirteen beam far forward, further increasing the interior cabin space. A thirteen foot wide beam is unusual in a yacht of this length, but Carver’s designers have made it work with the nearly plumb bow line and level foredeck that leads to a sheerline that sweeps down to the aft.
Power is supplied by standard gasoline 6.2 L 350hp Mercury gasoline engines, mated through a V-drive to 20” four-blade Nibral props , or optional diesel power (Volvo or Yanmar) which is also unique for a yacht of this size. With the Bennett trim tabs ever so slightly deployed, expect a top speed of around 30mph and a comfortable cruising speed of around 23-24mph. You’ll find the C36 well behaved in close quarters thanks to the bow and stern thrusters controlled by a single lever, almost making this boat able to be run single-handedly.
The C36 Command Bridge offers more living and entertaining space than you’ll typically find in a yacht of this size, in part due to the extended bridge deck over the aft cockpit, and her thirteen foot beam, this three level cruiser truly works as a live-aboard boat for extended cruising, or a wonderful family week-end escape.
By Brad Roberts