As we approached the dock in Falmouth Harbor a shiny new 53 Sueños from HydraSports Custom Boats awaited. Once aboard, the reality of why such a glorious beast exists and what its existence makes possible for fish-minded folks like myself, started to sink in.
The 53 Sueños is a suitable poster child for next wave of center consoles that are built for fisherman to offer an unparalleled mix of size, speed, comfort, and fishability all rolled into a customizable package. Think about what you could do with a 53’ center console that tops out at 61 knots and holds 1000 gallons of fuel. With this range and speed, you could fish the canyons and return to sleep in your own bed in the same day!
With its unveiling in 2015 as the largest outboard-powered center console on the market, the 53 Sueños quickly racked up awards for Best In Show at Miami International Boat Show, as well as structural accolades that have never before been achieved in recreational boating. By working with Structural Composites, HCB was able to offer the first commercial use of Structural Composites’ NAVY SBIR Advanced Combatant Craft Technology. This allowed the 53 Sueños to offer single-skin transom and single-skin hull construction that provides the durability, ruggedness, and the ease of maintenance of solid laminate construction but at a weight equal to or less than traditional sandwich hull construction that is commonly used. Before this technology, a solid laminate would be far too heavy.
As we were throttling up to 61 knots, I couldn’t help but take note of the beauty, layout, and fishability of the 53 Sueños. The power of the 350 Yamaha outboards shot 53 feet of center console out of the hole effortlessly, and the biggest surprise was the lack of bowrise that typically prevents you from being able to see the horizon in front of you until the boat settles in on plane.
I quickly counted 40 rod-holders, inspected what I later learned were two huge 60-gallon dual pressurized livewells, and dreamed of readying baits on the massive rigging station in an effort to fill fish boxes that would be a challenge in itself to fill, even on the most epic canyon trip. When I noticed the boat was pre-rigged for electric deep drop reels, I knew this rocket-ship was bred to fish, but coming along with it was a level of comfort you would never associate when invited on a canyon trip on a center console.
It was this never before experienced level of center console comfort that transported my fish-fueled daydream to one that centered around quality time with the family. With the surprisingly spacious cabin extremely well appointed with AC, refrigerator, microwave, individual seating, separate head with shower and a queen size berth; this platform was perfect for an overnight family escape to Nantucket or any like destination, that would be more than safe and plenty comfortable even for my wife and 10-month old daughter. Any noticeable shortcoming between the pitfalls of a cabin versus the uncompromised functionality of a resort hotel room, is usually a point of contention with my wife that rules out staying overnight on the boat. However, with the 53‘s comfortable layout, whether at port or cruising the open seas while the family is safely seated in comfortable, luxurious helm seating complete with pedestal suspension, HydraSports Custom Boats hit their mark when they set out to build the largest, most comfortable, fishing-focused center console ever built.
Typically, when that invite comes for a canyon trip on a center console, you automatically envision oppressive heat when the sun is high, followed by a cold night, all while being exposed to the elements for over 24 hours… and, if you’re lucky, you’ll have a bean bag to place between you and uncomfortable fiberglass. This couldn’t be further from the capabilities of the 53 Sueños. With its gorgeous yet rugged puncture-proof upholstery topside, custom built-in coolers and freezers from Frigid Rigid, and a level of customization that has led to audio packages amounting to 10,000 pounds of speakers, subwoofers, and audio wire on some customized builds, this center console was the sharpest looking, most comfortable fishing machine I’ve ever set foot on. I just wish it was more than a test ride and we had kept heading south of Martha’s Vineyard…