Voodoo casts spell on boating industry

Roger Hill Yacht Design has audiences spellbound yet again with the launch of new power catamaran, ‘Voodoo’, at the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show in Queensland.



The 17m power cat is a first for the New Zealand based company, combining traditional architecture with modern methodology and software.

Employing lifting foils and surface drives with an asymmetrical planning hull, Voodoo’s ‘trailblazing design’ is both stylish and functional.

'It is a foil-borne power catamaran,' said Hill, the company’s founder and owner who’s been designing boats for 34 years. 'The foils are there to optimise its performance.'

Built by Pachoud Motor Yachts in New Zealand, Voodoo is a high performance power cat, excelling in economy and luxury.

'The design process we went through is a sort of evolutionary process,' said Hill. 'The end result is a boat that is a little bit out of square compared to similar sized planning boats.'

But according to Hill, his out-of-the-box concepts are what keep the industry alive and customers wondering what will happen next.

'It’s very interesting,' said Hill. 'People who’ve usually got a preconceived idea about what they are going to see come aboard Voodoo and have that completely shot away. They go away with their perplexed look on their faces wondering what happened; what did I just see?'

Accommodations aboard Voodoo include a large forward cabin with private en-suite bathroom, and three additional cabins.
Sarah Ruggiero


Aside from revolutionary mechanics, Voodoo’s most noteworthy aspect combines high speeds with fuel efficiency. Reaching over 40 knots in rough conditions, the main concept of this vessel is the ability to travel long ranges at high speeds.

'The trip here [from New Zealand to Sanctuary Cove] has been a bit of a proving ground for that theory,' said Hill. 'The average speed coming over was about 25 knots, which is quite extraordinary for a planning hull type boat.'

Hill and his team made the trip from New Zealand in a record time of two and half days, including stops.

'Generally they have to do a trip like that off the plane, at quite low speeds, but such is the fuel efficiency of this boat it was able to go quite fast,' said Hill.

Hill explains that speed and fuel economy are ideal for the unpredictable Queensland weather.

'[Voodoo] will get to your destination in time that you need to before the next front comes through and kicks you in the face,' said Hill.

Despite what may seem like an intimidating display of marine aquatics, Hill explained that the catamaran is simple to operate.

'Although it is a 17 meter boat, one person can handle it quite easily,' said Hill. 'It’s not difficult to drive and it is very manoeuvrable. It has wide apart engines for steering ability and a bow-thruster as well.'

Although Voodoo can be billed as a luxury charter boat, Hill explained that it is designed for a private market.

The contemporary interior flaunts a spacious one-floor layout designed specifically for dual family use. Squared-off furnishings frame an unobstructed nautical view from every window. With a full-beam saloon, a dining room table for eight, barbecue, bar fridge, and icemaker, Voodoo is ideal for entertaining guests. Accommodations include a large forward cabin with private en-suite bathroom, and three additional cabins. An aft dinghy 'garage' rounds out the layout.

Amenities are plentiful, but feature a custom-made hydraulic platform, shower, rod locker, and bait station.

With a full-beam saloon, a dining room table for eight, barbecue, bar fridge, and icemaker, Voodoo is ideal for entertaining guests
Sarah Ruggiero


'I think this boat particularly is suited for the Queensland, Gold Coast, live-aboard lifestyle,' said Hill. 'The boat is set up for entertaining and relaxing and swimming and fishing off and probably much more so than your more conventional boat that is more enclosed and not as open and not as indoor outdoor friendly. The climate here is perfect for it.'
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