Galeon’s 560 Skydeck is an interesting combination of two designs that seem to come together quite nicely. On one hand, she’s a low and sleek hardtop express cruiser with an opening sunroof that lights up the salon and helm area. On the other, she’s a flybridge yacht with an elevated command station and gathering area. In fact, as we toured the boat at some of the recent shows, we would hear the sales staff finish taking prospective clients on a tour of her features, and then ask, “Shall we go look topside at the bridge?” to which they consistently responded, “There’s a bridge?” Well played, Galeon.
- Fusion stereo AM/FM with bluetooth module and two speakers
- Extended swim platform with collapsible three-step stainless steel swim ladder and teak decking
- 316 stainless steel handrails
- 240V two-burner induction cooktop
- C-shape sofa with hi-lo wood dining table and filler cushion
- 240V upright refrigerator with freezer compartment (5.8 ft3 / 165L)
- Air Conditioning System, Condaria Chilled water (84,000 BTU) – 240V
- Hydraulic steering system
|Length Overall||58' 1" / 17.70 m|
Currently no test numbers
2 x 725-hp Volvo Penta D11
Contents of Report
Since we first started reviewing Galeon Yachts, the main theme that has been impressing us so much is the attention to detail, particularly in the fit and finish. It begins with the molds that are built to exacting standards. Once assembled and bonded, they fit as a single unit with no creaks or rattles when underway.
Moving to the cabinetry, it’s all made in-house, again to exacting standards. Each piece fits into place meticulously with no cover-up silicone jobs anywhere; it’s just not needed. Doors are book-matched grain and soft close. Ordering a Galeon interior in high-gloss finish means a mirror at every turn. The finish is that flawless.
Galeon also has an in-house metal shop, and the works of these artisans are replete throughout the yacht, both in plain sight and hidden from view. The most visible are the rails and hand holds that have ornate angles rather than straight runs, portholes that have a polished shine to the stainless. Not so visible are the fuel and water tanks made from 516 stainless.
Exterior Features Inspection
The swim platform serves as a great place to board the 560 Skydeck, whether from a floating dock or from in the water. Its decking is teak, and offered with an optional hydraulically actuated version with a lift capacity of 1,100 lbs. (498.95 kg). With this version, as the platform lowers, stairs automatically deploy from the flush position to allow easy entry to the aft deck. Thus, the functional teak-beach is created.
The aft deck is accessed from the port side stairway from the swim platform. Teak is used throughout the deck. An L-shaped seat surrounds a plexi table with flip-out leafs, all resting on dual stainless pedestals. Storage is under the seats.
Elevated cleats are to both sides, and for Med-mooring there are optional warping winches just ahead. An opening allows for line storage ahead of the winches. The extended overhead provides protection to the aft deck.
Wide side decks and rails to both the outboard and cabin side ensure a safe transition to the bow. Twin sun pads flank the center skylight to the lower cabin. Rails are outboard to maintain safety should these pads be used while underway, an attractive proposition as they both include tilt backs allowing a conversion to chaise lounge position.
Fully forward there is an electric winch with foot controls and separate controls at each helm. The anchor roller manages a 77-pound (34.9 kg) galvanized anchor attached to 295’ (89.9 m) of 3/8” (9.5 mm) galvanized chain. A hatch alongside provides access to the self-draining rode locker.
Of course, there’s the Skydeck, and in this case it’s like revealing the hidden features of a Swiss Army knife. This deck is normally closed off, and it is this that gives the 560 Skydeck her sleek appearance consistent with a hardtop express cruiser. However, push a button, and a sliding carbon fiber cover opens to expose an open deck with a wraparound L seat with storage underneath, a wet bar with optional refrigerator, and a fully-featured helm station with another three forward-facing seats. The starboard front seat has a reversible back so it can convert from forward to aft facing.
The Skydeck helm is center-mounted. A heavy-duty helm seat is provided and includes a fold-down seatback to accommodate the deck being covered. The panel includes an optional A125 auxiliary multi-function display to port (remember to make sure the master unit down below is turned on) and the controls to the right of the wheel. The Volvo Penta EVC displays are just below. To the right are the engine controls and the bow and stern thruster joysticks.
A small collapsible plexi windscreen is just ahead, and the entire console is collapsible and conceals at the push of a button to accommodate the carbon fiber Skydeck cover.
Interior Features Inspection
A three-panel glass and stainless-steel door opens fully to create a near seamless transition from the aft deck to the interior. As we move inside, it’s clear that the theme is light and more light. Large side windows and the huge forward windshields fill the bill and bathe the room in natural light and provide good sightlines to the horizon from the seated positions. Light toned upholstery and darker woods provide eye appeal. Choose from either Gloss Walnut cabinetry with Misty Grey decking or Beach Wood Grey for the cabinetry and Shore White flooring. Climate is controlled from the 84,000 BTU Condaria chilled water system.
The galley is located aft and to the port side on the main deck keeping both it, and the host, in the center of the two main gathering and entertaining venues. The sliding doors just abaft allow the counter to serve double duty as a cockpit service bar.
Inside, the galley is well equipped with plenty of Corian counter space, an additional island for food prep, and a raised counter for buffet serving. A large tempered and tinted glass window to the side ensures that the chef enjoys a continual view. Storage is above the windows showing clever use of space. The double basin stainless-steel sink can be covered with a wood-cutting surface. Directly adjacent is the 240V four-burner induction cooktop. Below is the convection microwave. A 5.8 ft3 (165 L) upright refrigerator is corner mounted to the aft section with open space above, and it supplements the 2.3 ft3 (65 L) refrigerated drawer.
Across to port is more storage and additional counter space.
Continuing forward on the main deck, we move up a set of steps that separates the galley from the salon. Otherwise, it’s an open floor plan with the eye being uninterrupted throughout the level. It also maintains the characteristic high headroom at 6’5” (1.96 m). To port is a U-shaped dinette surrounding a solid wood table on a pair of hi-lo pedestals that allows for a conversion to an extra berth.
Opposing seating is to starboard in the form of a two-across loveseat. The wide planked decking can be covered with the standard carpeting. The side windows admit plenty of natural light in and provide good, though not great, visibility out thanks to the single ornamental trim piece running across their length. Supports to the upper deck are trimmed in matching wood, and the air handler vents are integrated into these supports.
Above all, decorative trim strips along the length of the overhead are well populated with LED lighting.
With the clever “Skydeck” arrangement, the 560 provides both an upper command station and the ability to open a sunroof to the forward salon. Additionally, opening side windows add to the mix to let in huge amounts of air and sun, blurring the line between the inside and the outside.
Although there is a Skydeck operating station, Galeon also includes a lower station ahead and to the starboard side of the main deck. Visibility to the side is improved here thanks to the trim piece across the aft windows lowering to the side decks at this point and being out of sight. All the windows are tempered glass, with the windows to both sides able to be opened electrically. We’d still like to see either a single piece windshield or a smaller center mullion to further improve visibility. Defrosters are fitted just inside the bottoms of the windshields. Overhead, the opening sunroof allows plenty of fresh air and light.
As for the layout, the lower helm station is professional and efficient. The upper panel is able to accommodate an optional Raymarine A127 12.1” (30.73 cm) multi-function display along with autopilot and depth gauge, and there’s still room to add an optional A125 aux display. To the right is a Volvo Penta EVC display. The lower panel is well populated with gauges and the steering wheel is on an elevated pod. To the left is a large switch panel with the sticks controlling the optional electric bow and stern thrusters right alongside. The engine controls and trim rockers are in a sub-panel well to the right of the helm station.
We’re always happy to see the small panel to the left with a line drawing of the yacht screen printed on the surface. On this is a series of small LEDs that show when pumps are activated and which nav lights are burning.
Lower Deck Accommodations
A center-mounted companionway leads us to an attractive and well-finished foyer to the staterooms. This welcoming area is well lit from the windows above. On this level are three staterooms and two heads. Along with the beautiful décor, there is an underlying theme of creative use of space. There is a single corner or nook that hasn’t been turned into useful storage. As an example, we see hanging lockers with shelves in the back. Berths have drawers underneath rather than requiring lifting the mattress. Both staterooms have hidden, lighted vanities.
A private entrance adjacent to the stairs leads us to the full beam master that is lavishly, but tastefully, decorated. The queen-sized berth is mounted low in the center of gravity and on the centerline of the hull, thereby minimizing any movement. Yes, we know that chances are the boat won’t be underway while we’re sleeping, but there’s a good chance of overnighting on the hook or a mooring.
A bureau of drawers is to starboard offering plenty of storage, but more can be found in hanging lockers and under berth drawers. To port is a comfortable seat and desk providing a place to sit and plan out the next day’s destination. It also doubles as a vanity with a mirrored lid.
The VIP is fully forward and it has the familiar layout of a berth mounted into the bow. Access is to the sides up two steps. Hanging lockers are supplemented by the drawer storage under the berth.
Overhead are lengthy skylights providing welcome light and these are all framed by heavy wood trim. This is an unusual design element, but not so unusual for Galeon. Most often, we see the requisite hatch required under certificated guidelines. While these hatches allow light in, these skylights do much more, and the result is quite comforting both to the eye and the mind.
Most pleasing is the way Galeon is able to squeeze every bit of available space and make it usable. A glance at the cabin shows more storage than nearly any other boat in class. We’ve seen instances where builders don’t even add storage to the dead space over the side windows. Here, Galeon has storage above, below, and ahead of the side windows. And that’s just the start of it.
There’s a private entrance to the head, just abaft and to port. This includes an electric flush toilet, an opening portlight, and a separate walk-in shower. Like the master, it includes a tower-style faucet.
The guest cabin is to starboard from the foyer and features twin berths. These can also slide together, allowing the 560 to host three couples. An opening portlight allows fresh air to circulate, but when closed the cabin is still climate controlled.
Crew Cabin or Storage
The 560 Skydeck is offered in two different versions. One has lazarette storage and the other offers this space as a fourth cabin. Some call it crew space, but this isn’t really a boat that gets crewed; additional guests, yes, but paid crew, not so much.
As a fourth cabin, it’s actually quite comfortable. Access is through a watertight door to the starboard side of the transom. It includes a pair of berths and a separate, albeit modest, head. If this option is chosen, the 560 can still accommodate a tender on the hydraulic platform.
Galeon is consistent across the entire lineup with building premium-level boats that excel in both quality of construction as well as fit and finish. The 560 Skydeck proudly carries on that mission. She’s an interesting blend of a yacht carrying the sleek lines of an express cruiser while at the same time providing the raised operational and gathering areas of a flying bridge cruiser. It’s a beautiful combination, and one that Galeon has pulled off quite well in true Galeon form.