Project Update Zaca 73 Selene, Refit Phase 1

A year ago, in April 2020, we announced that we had received an order for a major refit of the Zaca 73 Selene. Now, almost a year later, we have almost completed the first phase of the scheduled updates. Throughout the entire process of refitting this beautiful 22.5 meter long aluminum sailing yacht from 2006, we have been working together closely with her designer, Olivier van Meer.

The Selene changed owners in 2019, after which her new owner expressed a number of requests. They want to enjoy sailing with her for many years to come, so their main priorities focus on comfort and convenience. Among those requests were the possibility for sailing with a small crew and combining two cabins into one large owner’s cabin.

Soft Anchoring System (SAS)

To make ‘shorthanded sailing’ with the ‘Selene’ possible, we have made a number of changes to the yacht, using new techniques and developments. One of those new techniques is the Soft Anchoring System (SAS). We were able to create this system by joining forces with specialists such as Olivier van Meer Design, JSM Jongkind, Super Duplex Hulls, De Gier Maritiem, Straathof Controls and Trydo Hydrauliek. SAS enables the owner to stop the yacht with a single press on a button, even when conditions are windy. This enables the owner to prepare for docking easily!

The ‘Selene’ features a new, 249hp John Deere engine and a West Mekan Controllable Pitch Propellor. By using the feathering position of the propellor, the rpm can be maintained without moving forward or backward. The rpm then provides sufficient pressure on the hydraulics, which enables the bow and stern thrusters to keep the yacht head to wind.


Another solution for easily lowering the sails on ‘Selene’ with a small crew was to equip her with a furling boom. We modified the existing Hall Spars carbon mast in such a way that it fits perfectly with the furling boom.

This modification brought up the necessary challenges, for which we – as VMG Yachtbuilders – like to come up with unique solutions. To get the luff of the mainsail into the boom at the correct angle, we installed a curved track on the mast. In addition, we created enough space in the mast to feed all hydraulics from the furling boom to the main engine.

Other adjustments

Furthermore, the cockpit and transom of the Zaca 73 have been addressed. We provided her with a built-in stern anchor and a retractable gangway, both of which disappear completely into the transom. Additionally, the old steering wheel pedestal has also been replaced by a modern version, featuring new instruments and navigation equipment. The Zaca 73 ‘Selene’ is now fully equipped with up-to-date software from Straathof Controls.

Refit Phase II – Interior

In the second phase of the refit, the adjustments will mainly be made to the interior of the Selene. In consultation with the architect, the new owner has decided to merge the two front cabins into one large owner’s cabin, with a separate shower and toilet. The interior of the old master cabin will also be upgraded.

Just like the owner, we are excited about the solutions chosen for the refit. We see changes being made every day, which make this beautiful sailing yacht come into its own. We will keep sharing the photos and progress with you, throughout the next phase.

Team VMG Yachtbuilders

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