First a little about our Lafitte 44 “Orla”
A Robert Perry Design Lafitte 44
Hull Number 37 of 55.
Built in 1983 at Chung Wha Shipyard, Kaosiung, Taiwan.
Chung Wha was responsible for the build to the point of completion of the interior, engine installation, exterior woodwork, hatches and some deck fittings etc. This work complete, the hulls were then shipped to the USA for final fitting out including rigging by “Lafitte Yachts”, California.
Orla was unique in that she was shipped from Taiwan to Hong Kong for completion, hence her British Kemp rig and equipment. She arrived at the British managed RHKYC Boatyard in May 1983, was fully fitted out then launched in July of that year.
Her first owner, an Irish ex-patriot, put her on the Irish Register following a Lloyds survey and gave her the lovely Irish name she still has to this day. He sailed and competed with her in Hong Kong waters from 1985 to 1988, taking part in many races including the 600 mile China Sea Races from Hong Kong to Manila in the Philippines………………………….Then he took up golf.
Her second owner had crewed on Orla during that time and when he bought her in 1988 he had her transferred to the British Register then took her on to win first in her class in the San Fernando Race. Orla achieved a 200nm day beam reaching in 25-30 knots of steady winds during that race. After he retired, Orla was “shipped” to the UK on the “Tokyo Bay”, arriving in Southampton in June 1992. She was allowed VAT and DUTY FREE status under the terms and concessions enjoyed by ex-patriots returning to take up permanent residence in the UK. Her paperwork confirms her “DEEMED VAT PAID” status and because she was imported in 1992 she didn’t have to comply to EU RCD. However Orla does comply with ORC CAT O (OCEAN) requirements.
After 18 years on the Hamble River, this much loved yacht was reluctantly put up for sale due to ill health. Her owners handed her over to us in November 2006 safe in the knowledge that she would be continuing her journey in good hands.
In July/August 2007, we sailed our Lafitte 44 Orla home.