The Rapier 550 is a big cat, the last from Broadblue shipyard and was nominated for the European boat of the year contest. I don't see nothing strange in that, it is a push pull button boat, a light and fast sailboat that the shipyard describes as a performance model (they have a performance line and a cruising line). What strikes me as odd is the category she is competing: Bluewater boats.http://interestingsailboats.blogspot.pt/2014/10/the-nominated-boats-for-2015-european.html
Off course it is a bluewater boat in a sense that it will have no problem in sailing offshore, but is a boat expressly designed for it, like the Garcia Exploration 45 or the Boreal 52? It is a more bluewater boat than the Euphoria 54, Italia 15.98, Moody 54DS, Centurion 57 or XP55 that run on the Luxury boat category and performance boat category?
We can say that the Garcia exploration 45 and the Boreal 52 are imminently practical boats, the hulls are not even painted and therefore can be considered not luxury boats but the same cannot be said from the Rappier 550 or the Southerly 535 that have luxury as one of the main ingredients. Their brands confirm that: Broadblue talks about "Luxury interiors" on the Rapier 550 and Nordshore talks about "luxurious accommodations" regarding the Southerly 533.
So, after this rant, let's have a look at the Rapier 550 through a Yachting world test: