The Southerly 535 caters to those who want to sail where they please and was designed for easy handling. With its tall powerful carbon rig and sweptback spreaders, these yachts will sail fast, with minimum effort. The unique keel offers a deeper draft than most, for sailing offshore – whilst having the flexibility to cruise shallow waters anywhere in the world with the draft reduced to just a few feet.
On deck, there is a full depth sail locker forward and a spacious lazarette locker with access to the large swim platform. The mid cockpit is spacious, yet secure with comfortable seating and a large cockpit table for entertaining guests in style. The twin wheels provide excellent line of sight and easy passage to and from the mid cockpit as well as dedicated areas for sail controls when sailing short-handed.
Down below, the Southerly 535 has luxurious but practical accommodation. The raised saloon comfortably has seating for six and offers panoramic views to create a feeling of volume and light. There is a lower level snug area to starboard with tri-view windows provides excellent visibility and an ideal space when working from home! The raised chart table can be very handy in bad weather, offering excellent visibility and easy access to the cockpit. To port the linear galley provides a protected and practical area to cook in when at sea. There are ample work surface areas, plenty of storage, a fully gimballed stainless steel stove, front loading refrigerator and freezer drawers and more.
For accommodation, she can sleep six comfortably in three cabins. The guest cabins and day head are forward to allow for owner privacy. The forward cabin has a double centreline berth with en-suite facilities and twin bunks in the Pullmans cabin. The aft cabin stateroom is supremely spacious with a large double centreline berth, ample storage, plenty of natural light, desk area to starboard, plus en-suite head with a separate shower and access to walk-in engine room.
MERTICE is hull #002, built at Northshore Shipyard and she is a unique one. The build started in 2014 but due to circumstances at the shipyard, the original owner decided to finish the build in Southampton. This meant she only launched and commissioned in 2015 when used for the first time. Since launching, she has been lightly used but MERTICE has an extensive bluewater spec with many custom features and upgrades. These include a Seldon carbon rig, electric headsail furling system, custom mainsheet arch taking away the track in the cockpit, CZone electric panel, new copper-coat and much more. MERTICE will comfortably take a new owner on their sailing adventures anywhere around the world.
We have owned Southerly 535 MERTICE for just over two years and have come to love the boat for her outstanding performance, comfort and luxury cruising. For a short time, she was sailed in the Solent but more dominantly off the Barcelona coast with extended trips around the Balearics and Gibraltar.
As a family boat, we have mainly sailed her with a crew of 2-4 people although she comfortably sleeps 6 in her three cabins (7 if the chess table is raised). She is admired in any marina that we visit. The beautiful distinctive windows, teak decks and light grey hull make her stand out from other boats. The interior of the boat is very light and airy, with excellent visibility achieved through her raised interior seating, sitting over the retractable keel box. When moored in a marina or at anchor, you can view all around the boat whilst sat around the saloon table due to this raised position, allowing you to view the surrounding environment rather than sat deep in the hull like a traditional yacht.
Having owned a Southerly before, we are accustomed to her build quality, performance, and stability in weather. She can be sailed by two comfortably. All ropes and instruments lead to the cockpit. They support dual Raymarine 15.4 inch chartplotters, autopilot, and Raymarine wind/depth/speed instruments. On longer passages, she can also be sailed inside at the chart plotter station with all instrumentation integrated through the Raymarine network.
Performance is enhanced by her twin rudder setup, deep keel, and sail plan with upgraded carbon fibre mast. The in-boom furling makes the use of the mainsail particularly easy. She points well into the wind with her retractable keel (3.3m when fully extended) and twin rudders that provide added stability when heeled over. It is rare to need to reef her in winds of less than 28 knots testifying to her stability in the water. With the super smooth Volvo Penta D3-150 and insulated hulls, she is remarkably quiet under motor or when moored at anchor/marina. Her upgraded mattresses and en-suite master cabin and guest cabin make her exceptionally comfortable for a couple to sail with or without their family.
The benefit of the Southerly lifting keel cannot be overstated in a 54-foot boat when compared to a conventional fixed keel. When fully retracted, the boat depth is just 1m. It makes the boat far more flexible for entering harbours, marinas, coastal waterways, and for getting close to beaches. The robust hull, keel plate and strong rudders allow her to bottom out on mud or sand very easily. By timing tidal entry into shallow depth areas, you can sit comfortably on the beach whilst other yachts sit out in the bay. Other similar size boats come alongside not realising that Mertice has a lifting keel and can happily sit in 1.5m of water rather than the expected 2.5-3.0m. Boats failing to recognise this can find themselves listing heeled over overnight whilst MERTICE simply sits flat on the seabed next to them! Further performance benefits are made by raising and lowering the keel whilst sailing, often- achieving 0.5-1.0 knots in extra speed performance sailing down wind. The folding Brunton propeller (new 2021) adds to further reduction in drag.
Her cruising performance is excellent in all wind conditions. Down-wind sailing can be assisted by her large asymmetric sail mounted on a Karver bowsprit that can be reefed in or out with the assistance of a continuous rope led back to the starboard genoa winch. This allows for asymmetric sailing with a crew of just two people. The electric powered furling of both the self tacking jib and the genoa makes life very easy. She is also equipped with a super light carbon mast mounted spinnaker pole.
As a family cruiser, we have found that MERTICE functions well with two large families on extended trips. Her on board Cummins Onan generator gives that extra reassurance of knowing that service batteries can be topped up to support the use of tablet computers, mobile phones, and watching the TV whilst at anchor or moored in a marina. The Mastervolt chargers/invertor supports the large 740AH service batteries (all renewed 2021). The CZone interface provides constant information about connections to shore power, service battery charge levels, and power input/outputs. There is an additional 200AH bow service battery to support manoeuvring around the marina using joystick controlled bow and stern thrusters at the starboard helm. The thrusters give that added control when mooring her in tight spaces or when approaching a buoy.
The cockpit is a huge space, enclosed by a full cockpit tent. This is only made possible by the stainless hoop for the mainsheet. This hoop removes the need for an obstructive mainsheet track attached to the deck cutting the enclosed cockpit area into two pieces. The other hoop advantage is one of safety. It keeps a loaded mainsheet away from all crew-members.
Our decision to sell MERTICE has been motivated by lack of use due to family health circumstances. Time has come to pass her on to be looked after by a new owner.