The Riviera 42 has a terrific mix of indoor and outdoor living areas. But there is no doubt the broad cockpit will be the hub of activity. It has the necessary floor space for everything from serious fishing to alfresco entertaining.
For the former, the owners have fitted a spread of heavy-duty rod holders. The in-transom live-bait tank was plumbed with pick-up and circulating pumps, and a light was added along with the lift-up lid. The tank can double as an icebox when the boat is in party mode.
The cockpit is big enough to swing a gamefishing chair, or plonk a teak table and some deck chairs, and is graced with serious cruising amenities such as a built-in fridge/freezer, sink with running water and a concealed garbage bin for the empties. The moulded lids over the amenities centre make useful impromptu seats.
A mark of a serious cruising boat is the amount of dedicated storage space you find aboard. The 42 has loads of room in a sub-floor lazarette that can be accessed via any or all of three floor hatches. There is room for stowing diving and fishing gear, an outboard motor, spares, and accumulated trash.
Sidepockets were stacked with fishing lines, cleaning products, mooring ropes and so on. I also found the shorepower connection, a saltwater deckwash, and a hot/cold handheld shower. The remote engine fuel shutoffs and dedicated firefighting system are safety features that hopefully will never be needed.
The above deck cleats and pop-up cleats for swinging fenders are a response to customer calls for fittings that make tending the mooring lines a snap. Another nice detail is the boarding platform, which is wide enough for a director's chair or two, and a perfect spot for sundowners.
The owners have fitted an optional three-quarter length rear awning to provide shade over the cockpit. While it will be appreciated in summer, I wasn't so keen on the fact you couldn't see the transom or boarding platform from the helm. That made parking a bit of a guessing game.