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Amel Santorin 46 – Yachting Monthly review

  • Theo Stocker
  • November 10, 2014

Ian Park and Linda Melton were about to sail away to far-flung islands, but took Theo Stocker for a cruise along the Lleyn Peninsula first

Product Overview

Manufacturer:, price as reviewed:.

What’s she like to sail?

The Amel Santorin 46 is an impressive boat. From the moment you step aboard she feels sturdy and well built. A solid fibreglass lay-up and fully bonded hull, deck and bulkheads make her very stiff. The plethora of novel features on board make her feel slightly unusual – solid guardrails, moulded decks and a plastic rubbing strake might not be to everyone’s taste, but they all add up to a boat that fits an uncompromising concept of rugged luxury.

To get the most out of the Santorin’s sailing performance, you will need a good blow, sailing off the wind, ideally in the tropics. In that case you can comfortably passage plan for 7 knots. In a Force 6 you’ll get 9 or 10 knots, and in a gale you’ll still be comfortable.

In light winds, however, she will be less eager. Her heavy displacement and in-mast furling sails reduce drive upwind, and she’ll struggle to point very high, which could be a handicap for eking an extra few degrees to make it round the next headland as you potter along the coast, although there is always the engine. Modern Amels (see our test of the Amel 55, YM June 2013) have a redesigned hull, which dramatically improves upwind performance.

None of this should put you off what is a formidable boat, though. Built to bomb-proof standards, every last detail has been carefully considered so you can cruise far and wide with absolute confidence.

What’s she like in port and at anchor?

With a powerful bow thruster and controls for the self-stowing anchor at the helm, the start and end of each sail is pretty stress- free, even for a short-handed crew. Once the hook is down, wide decks make great places for sun-worshipping and the sheltered cockpit provides a good space to entertain.

Going below decks feels like arriving home, rather than being on board. Pile carpets, plush upholstery and high-gloss wood line the large saloon. Thanks to her generous beam, the table has space for several dinner guests. All the berths are comfortable and wide, but are still usable at sea – even the double aft can be separated by leeboards. There is well over 6ft headroom throughout. Storage is good, with ample hanging space and shelving, as well as storage under all the bunks, as the three separate water tanks are built into the keel. The short tunnel leading aft from the saloon to the master cabin provides further storage and workshop space.

Would she suit you and your crew?

The Amel philososphy has produced a distinctive range of yachts that are all remarkably similar in appearance. Historically, Amel offered very short options lists as everything had been thought through on the drawing board and included in the standard spec.

If you like tweaking and getting an extra few degrees on the wind, the Santorin 46 simply doesn’t offer enough bits of string to pull. However, if you love sailing but have had enough of being ‘jet- washed’ in an open cockpit, Amels are well worth considering. Like driving an automatic car, you will quickly get used to not having to work on the foredeck, instead letting the boat do it for you. Amel’s closest competitor is probably Oyster. Amel owners would assert that their boat is better suited to shorthanded sailing, and at roughly half the price (used), the French boat represents remarkable value, although still not cheap. Should you find the spare change to buy one, you’ll soon be leaving the miles churning in your wake, and ice for the cocktails will already be in the freezer.


Guide price £95,000 – £120,000

LOA 14m (46ft 1in)

LWL 11m (36ft 1in)

Beam 3.99m (13ft 1in)

Draught 1.89m (6ft 2in)

Genoa 53.98m2 (581 sq ft)

Mainsail 22.95m2 (247 sq ft)

Mizzen 13m2 (140 sq ft)

Mizzen staysail 22.02m2 (237 sq ft)

Ballooner headsail 9.96m2 (753 sq ft)

Engine Perkins 50hp

Displacement 11,000kg (24,251 lb)

Ballast 3901kg (8,600 lb)

Ballast ratio 35.5%

Designer Henri Amel

Builder Amel Yachts

Class Association www.amel.fr [email protected]

Fuel 401 litres (106 gal)

Range 450 miles

For a couple who want to go adventuring in a yacht they can entirely rely upon and which will deliver them across oceans safely and not exhausted, you couldn’t find a better boat.

Sailboat specifications

  • Last update: 28th March 2020

Santorin's main features

Santorin's main dimensions, santorin's rig and sails, santorin's performances, santorin's auxiliary engine, santorin's accommodations and layout.

Amel Santorin  Picture extracted from the commercial documentation © Amel

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  • Sailboat Guide

Amel Santorin 46

Amel Santorin 46 is a 45 ′ 11 ″ / 14 m monohull sailboat designed by Henri Amel and built by Amel between 1989 and 1997.

Drawing of Amel Santorin 46

Rig and Sails

Auxilary power, accomodations, calculations.

The theoretical maximum speed that a displacement hull can move efficiently through the water is determined by it's waterline length and displacement. It may be unable to reach this speed if the boat is underpowered or heavily loaded, though it may exceed this speed given enough power. Read more.

Classic hull speed formula:

Hull Speed = 1.34 x √LWL

Max Speed/Length ratio = 8.26 ÷ Displacement/Length ratio .311 Hull Speed = Max Speed/Length ratio x √LWL

Sail Area / Displacement Ratio

A measure of the power of the sails relative to the weight of the boat. The higher the number, the higher the performance, but the harder the boat will be to handle. This ratio is a "non-dimensional" value that facilitates comparisons between boats of different types and sizes. Read more.

SA/D = SA ÷ (D ÷ 64) 2/3

  • SA : Sail area in square feet, derived by adding the mainsail area to 100% of the foretriangle area (the lateral area above the deck between the mast and the forestay).
  • D : Displacement in pounds.

Ballast / Displacement Ratio

A measure of the stability of a boat's hull that suggests how well a monohull will stand up to its sails. The ballast displacement ratio indicates how much of the weight of a boat is placed for maximum stability against capsizing and is an indicator of stiffness and resistance to capsize.

Ballast / Displacement * 100

Displacement / Length Ratio

A measure of the weight of the boat relative to it's length at the waterline. The higher a boat’s D/L ratio, the more easily it will carry a load and the more comfortable its motion will be. The lower a boat's ratio is, the less power it takes to drive the boat to its nominal hull speed or beyond. Read more.

D/L = (D ÷ 2240) ÷ (0.01 x LWL)³

  • D: Displacement of the boat in pounds.
  • LWL: Waterline length in feet

Comfort Ratio

This ratio assess how quickly and abruptly a boat’s hull reacts to waves in a significant seaway, these being the elements of a boat’s motion most likely to cause seasickness. Read more.

Comfort ratio = D ÷ (.65 x (.7 LWL + .3 LOA) x Beam 1.33 )

  • D: Displacement of the boat in pounds
  • LOA: Length overall in feet
  • Beam: Width of boat at the widest point in feet

Capsize Screening Formula

This formula attempts to indicate whether a given boat might be too wide and light to readily right itself after being overturned in extreme conditions. Read more.

CSV = Beam ÷ ³√(D / 64)

Said to be the replacement for the MARAMU 46.

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