The construction of Heesen’s latest superyacht has begun this week. Her name is Sparta and she would be the largest steel-hull displacement M/Y by the remarkable Dutch shipyard.During the laying ceremony on October 19 a Greek coin with the image of Poseidon was added to the yacht keel by her owner. Sparta's delivery is set for 2023. Van Oossanen Naval Architects created the impressive Fast Displacement Hull Form (FDHF), while the interior and exterior designs are both by the London-based Winch Design studio.Perry van Oossanen, Managing Director of the naval architecture studio, has commented: "The Fast Displacement Hull Form of Project Sparta, combined with the sleek design by Winch and the optimised building methodology by Heesen, makes this yacht really stand out in terms of performance and efficiency. With engines quite typical for a yacht this size, she will easily reach her contract speed and outrun other yachts of this size and power, both in speed and range".Sparta is based on Heesen’s 66-metre Project Avanti. The latter was first presented at the Monaco Yacht Show 2018 and, according to the yard, “captured the attention” of the owner. The layout of the vessel fully reflects the owner’s lifestyle. Jim Dixon from Winch Design has expressed the following: “Once again we are delighted to have a very collaborative and decisive client with a clear lifestyle brief”. He added that “the arrangement of the vessel seamlessly connects the activity of water-side living at the aft ‘terrace’ with the calm and beautifully-coloured interior”.The bridge deck has been fully reserved for the owner. It features 2 suites and a private terrace with an outdoor dining and lounging zone. The sundeck could offer guests a Jacuzzi, pleasant sunpads and a bar. Another Jacuzzi, a steam room, a sauna and a gym can be found on the lower deck. The 1,200 GT yacht also features a 6,5-metre infinity pool aft. The 3 decks are services by a spiral staircase and a glass elevator.Sparta can accommodate 12 guests who would be taken care of by a total of up to 16 crew members. Guest suites are located across the main saloon and on the main deck. With the help of a special sliding partition 2 forward cabins can be transformed into a full-beam VIP one. The crew accommodation and the galley are located on the lower deck. As for the speed and range - with its two MTU 12V4000 M65R diesel engines the yacht will be able to reach a maximal speed of 16 knots and a range of 4,500 nautical miles for transatlantic cruising at a 12-knot speed. Photo: Heesen Yachts
October 24, 2020
The very first FD75 had its world debut in January, and now a brand new FD75 is launched by the Horizon Vision Shipyard.Hull Two of this entry-level 23-metre model has completed sea trials and will soon make its U.S. debut. The latter is highly anticipated as the yacht has been designed exactly for the American market. Taking its place at the entrance of the acclaimed Cor D. Rover-designed FD Series, the FD75 model is itself a remarkable achievement in terms of design and naval architecture. Designed to appeal to serious owners /operators, the FD75 features a raised pilothouse configuration that accommodates both an open bridge and a lower helm area within a 20’ 4” (6.2m) beam.The latest FD75 offers a four-stateroom layout, with a full-beam master on the main deck and three additional staterooms on the lower deck. Quarters for two crew are situated aft of the engine room.Boarding the yacht from the aft deck, which is outfitted with a large built-in sofa and freestanding furnishings, the open layout and impressive volume of the FD75 is readily apparent. Fully opening glass doors provide access to the main salon where large, uninterrupted windows enhance the feeling of openness. Complimentary two-toned white and silver oak wood punctuated by grey and blue soft goods, grey mirrors and slatted wood design elements complete the “sea of serenity” ambience throughout. This FD75 showcases a galley-aft configuration, which allows for the entire aft portion of the main deck to operate as one large entertaining space. Situated to starboard, the galley is fully equipped with SubZero freezer drawers and a separate ice maker, and a wine cooler is fitted just forward. To port, a convertible dining table provides added flexibility, serving as either a formal dining table or a casual breakfast bar. A fixed U-shaped leather sofa is joined by a coffee table with storage and faces a cabinet hiding the pop-up rotating television designed to minimize interference with the views. Forward, the full-beam master stateroom enjoys private access from the main deck and features seating and a vanity as well as hanging lockers and dual basins in the en suite. On the lower deck, a full-beam midship ensuite VIP is accompanied by a single-bed stateroom to port that offers additional storage closets and cabinets. A convertible twin stateroom is opposite the starboard. A shared en suite serving the single and twin staterooms is situated in the companionway along with a washer/dryer and additional storage. Providing a secondary option for navigation at night or in inclement weather, the semi-raised pilothouse is situated within steps of the master stateroom and is highlighted in black vinyl and carbon accents. Accessed either via the starboard exterior staircase or from the internal pilothouse, the open flybridge is a spacious and inviting area. Offering a dayhead, a television, a built-in bar with fixed stools, built- in seating, a BBQ and freezer, this lovely al fresco space echoes the serene color scheme and slatted wood design elements found on the lower deck. The boat deck aft comfortably stores the tender, which is launched and retrieved by the Steelhead davit. Dual helm chairs facilitate navigation, and dual bump-outs to port and starboard assist with docking operations. Forward, a full sunpad and seating area invite relaxation on the foredeck.Designed with the yard’s proprietary High-Performance Piercing Bow and hull design that affords optimal comfort and performance, this latest FD75 is powered by twin Caterpillar C18 ACERTs of 1,136bhp. The FD75 Hull Two is on schedule to deliver to the U.S. in early December. To Learn More About the FD75 Hull 2: - Hi-res Photos: https://bit.ly/34aLPAr - Virtual Tour: https://bit.ly/35KvP9q About HORIZON: Founded in 1987, Horizon Yachts has celebrated 30 years as one of the largest luxury yacht builders in the world as well as the number one builder in the Asia Pacific region. In the past three decades, Horizon has delivered over 835 luxury yachts, with more than 205 of these over 80 feet in length. Popular models ranging from 52 to 150 feet include motor yachts, superyachts, power catamarans, expedition yachts, and fast displacement motor yachts.
October 23, 2020
The question whether to choose a monohull vessel or a catamaran is an eternal dispute between two camps of yacht lovers, arguments for which are usually based not only on cold calculations, but also on a particular philosophy.The popularity of catamarans has grown significantly since the concept of their design underwent a number of important changes, in the light of which even multi-hull sailing vessels have now ceased to represent only a class of sports vessels, turning from Spartan-like vessels into luxurious and most comfortable cruisers.So why have so many charter agencies added sailing and motor catamarans in their fleets? (And some have even made them their main focus.)A person who takes a yacht for a charter, would surely list a calm and predictable on-water vacation among his or her preferences. That would mean relaxation, enjoying the sea and the sun, glasses of delicious wine and beautiful fruit platter on the table. For many this wouldn’t get along with sea-sickness, rolling at 25 degrees and narrow cockpits of classic cruising yachts.The catamaran hull offers high stability, a horizontal deck and unprecedented space for the whole family or group of friends, for whom moving around the ship becomes no more difficult than in a country-side house.CATAMARANS’ MAIN ADVANTAGES:1. Capacity and habitabilityThis is the first and main reason for the popularity of multi-hull yachts. The salon, huge by classical standards, is most often located at the level (or almost at the level) of the main deck, which saves the crew and guests from having to squeeze back and forth along narrow ladders, unlike monohull layouts. What’s more, one cannot take for granted the flybridge - unprecedented for sailing classics.As for sunbathing and close observation of dolphins - there is an ideal place: the bow net between the floats. In addition, the skipper’s post at the steering is usually separated, so in case of a charter you will not interfere with each other.When sailing in a company of three or more people, catamarans provide much more privacy: two blocks with living areas are located far from each other.Cooking and dining with friends can be immeasurably pleasant on the spacious catamaran board. 2. ManoeuvrabilityCatamarans have two engines with drives located at the aft ends of the floats. Due to the distance between them, there is zero tactical circulation, which means the boat can turn almost without changing its position. Modern control systems and dynamic drives, along with bow thrusters, are surely able to deploy a monohull in the same manner, but such technical equipment in most cases is unreasonably expensive.3. Fuel efficiencyThe resistance of two low-loaded sharp hulls is less than that of a single one with a ballast keel. Therefore, one can feel the difference in fuel consumption. But only in good weather. When the weather is close to storm conditions, the monohull is more efficient and can take the lead in cost saving.Many skippers run under one engine to save fuel, whereas both engines are used only for mooring manoeuvres.4. SecurityFor years advocates of classics have argued that catamarans are not as safe as their keel boats. But this statement can now be considered outdated as its origins lie back in the middle of last century, when the majority of catamarans were built by amateurs themselves. Even in calm weather they could easily be turned over, especially if one of its bodies lost its leakproofness due to damage.For a well-built modern catamaran it is very difficult, if not impossible, to sink. Modern structures are created based on computer modelling of any sea conditions. Cruisers, and charter options in particular, have the maximum possible safe sail area. 5. ComfortOverall comfort is another important issue, when it comes to choosing a yacht. A lot of sea-lovers, over the years of owning classical vessels, still haven’t been able to get rid of seasickness, and buying a catamaran could solve this problem.Most catamarans don't even have galley stoves with hinges, which are just not needed.6. PrecipitationAbsence of a ballast keel slightly expands the possibilities and opens up access to some unequipped shores.CATAMARANS’ DISADVANTAGES:1. PriceMultihull vessels are indeed more expensive, both to acquire or to charter. Prices continue to grow together with catamarans’ popularity. The purchase price is half the trouble, as the services are also more expensive than those for the classics - at least for the fact that there are two engines instead of just one.The high cost of land transportation and storage, when necessary, can also be mentioned. Price for a place in the marina would be higher, whereas some yacht clubs are not suitable for catamarans and trimarans at all.The consolation is that used catamarans are usually sold faster and have smaller losses in price in relative terms. 2. Lack of feedback while sailingCatamaran yachts are not suitable for sailing sport. They can be just great to go for a vacation or even to live on them, just like in a houseboat, but it is exactly because of their stability that half of the yachtsmen would never buy them. On a catamaran there is no sense of wind, waves, flight, and of the boat itself.It is extremely difficult to determine the moment when it is necessary to reef. While on a monohull this can be done by feeling, for catamarans there is an instruction at what winds the sails area should be reduced.3. The noise and shakingCatamaran hulls have an excellent feature of dampening low side waves, leaving the transversal line of the hull close to the horizon. However, oncoming or tangled medium-sized waves create a continuous soundtrack when trapped between the floats and the superstructure bottom. Strong flip-flops cause vibration. In this regard, it is recommended to choose catamarans with at least one metre of clearance.4. WindageLarge windage of the surface part of the vessel, together with low draught, sometimes makes the catamaran a “toy” in the hands of the wind. And if multihull cruisers with distinct keel elements are quite like sailboats able to go into a strong side wind no worse (or even better) than monohull cruisers, models designed for calm charter trips would perform terribly. Though, to be quite fair, it should be noted that this feature is not so relevant under engines.5. Not suitable for high latitudesThe best choice for the North Atlantic is an aluminum trawler motor yacht. And, of course, if we consider sailboats, a monohull would be a better solution than a catamaran. Residential areas are easier to heat and keep them warm, metal classics can even go through thin ice.However, the opposite is true for the equatorial zone — spacious catamaran salons would be beyond competition.6. Not so romanticThe majority of sea-lovers claim that classical boats are more romantic than multihulls. In fact, this is a strange and controversial statement, as catamarans have their own special charm. A dinner with a panoramic view over the sea and the stars - what can be more romantic?WHO IS FASTERFor some reason, it is often believed that a sailing catamaran is faster than a monohull. This is true if you compare a sports catamaran with an average cruiser. However, this would hardly be applicable to, for example, charter modifications of catamarans. Such models only go well at up to half-wind and almost won’t go at sharper courses. However they lie better at anchor.TO SUM UPAs normal, everything would surely depend on two main factors: personal preferences and the financial aspect. The two types of vessels give a completely different feeling, so it is highly recommended to rent and try each of them before buying - to compare the feelings. In any case, it is safe to say that a catamaran is just an ideal option - if not for purchasing, but surely for a charter. Although it is expensive, it offers quite a lot.(Based on the article by Mikhail Safronov)
October 22, 2020
The German shipyard Abeking & Rasmussen has delivered a new motor yacht - the 68-metre Soaring - under extraordinary conditions.Jörg Kleymann, Senior Project Manager of the company’s Yacht department, is not going to forget this particular experience: “About two weeks before the superyacht was to be handed over, half of Europe was engulfed into a ‘lockdown’ caused by the Covid-19 pandemic”. According to Kleymann, “It was simultaneously an extremely challenging time and a bold demonstration of the efficiency and flexibility of Abeking & Rasmussen, even under the harshest of conditions”. A special crisis management team, an elaborate safety and hygiene concept, as well as a two-shift production approach, helped the shipyard to deliver the yacht on time. Soaring was built for an experienced owner whose briefing listed, amongst other things, a separate owner’s deck with aft looking grand master suite, the biggest possible tender and a gym together with a wellness centre both with direct access to water. Apart from the Owner’s area the yacht features 4 Double-cabins and 1 VIP Suite, as well as generous double and single crew cabins in the bow, providing accommodation for up to 18 crew members.The design pitch was won by Focus Yacht Design. The Bremen studio, only a short car ride from the yard itself, created a truly distinctive and impressive design with the harmonious and contemporary exterior, the prominent window surface, elegant grey–white colour scheme and Soaring’s signature aesthetic feature - a striking line stretching all the way from the bow to the swim platform.In the words of Soaring’s designer Thomas Mühe: “I have experimented with this solid line, stretching the entire length of the superyacht, for years. And it all, finally, came together in Soaring”.Further distinctive design elements are the bow side windows that work as a unified and solid feature lending the superyacht an element of dynamics. Thomas Mühe comments on the commission and its execution: “Our goal was not to put together a selection of attractive details, but to create a coherent and harmonious whole that was to be simultaneously impressive and imposing but most of all a reflection and representation of the owner’s central life themes and requests. Early on it was clear that the owner valued originality and had no interest in a yacht that could easily be mistaken for another”. Technology-wise, Soaring’s captain has at his disposal already proven components. The steel / aluminium construction with a volume of 1541 GT is powered by two 1492 kilowatt strong MTU engines. The smooth hotel operations are ensured through 383 kilowatt strong Caterpillar generators and the tanks with a diesel capacity of 180 tons in total ensure a cruising radius of 4500 nautical miles. In addition, the superyacht fulfils the strict regulations of the IMO Trier III concept with its waste gas purification system. Two Schottel thrusters provide comfortable manoeuvring, Naiad Zero Speed stabilizers cater to a smooth ride even when at anchor and two Compass tenders of 7.5m and 9m length respectively offer convenient and comfortable water transfers. Interior work was done by, yet another Lemwerder company, Klaus Rodiek GmbH to the Focus Yacht Design specifications. They worked primarily with two types of wood, Amara and Tiama, natural stone and genuine Italian leather. The supremely outfitted living space used by the owner and his guests totals 471 square metres. LOWER DECK Soaring’s lower deck’s absolute highlight is the beach club with direct access to the swim platform. Together with the adjoining wellness centre the area boasts 74 square metres. Teak was used for flooring and the glossy eucalyptus, intertwined with 30cm long silver strings, for wall panelling.The large sofa is custom-made for the superyacht as well as the ceiling-high Italian light sculpture.The gym area, equipped with a ballet barre and a refreshment bar, connects with the wellness centre through a lobby that further leads to a dayhead and a shower as well as to a hammam port side and a massage room starboard side. The hammam, decorated in natural stone mosaics, caters for up to six people and the massage room to two. A professionally trained crew member is on hand to offer various treatments to the owner and his guests.Further forward on the lower deck is the engine room’s upper level and, located midship, yet another one of Soaring’s remarkable features. A 25 square metre starboard stowage is packed full of water toys including kayaks, surf boards, sea bobs, bicycles and electric scooters. Diving equipment can be found in the adjoining room and all of the equipment can be loaded and unloaded through a top hinged store hatch and a 400 kg-capacity crane. Opposite, on port side, a 20 square metre galley with direct access to the cooling rooms is manned by a professional chef and thanks to its large windows is flooded in daylight.MAIN DECK For those boarding Soaring from a tender, the main deck is reached from the swim platform via stairs and when docked the superyacht can be reached via a swivel gangway. The ample aft deck contains a sofa with two side tables and a centrally placed round dining table for twelve. In order to provide the owner and his guests with privacy at lunch or dinner, especially in buzzing marinas, a side board with a retractable frosted glass panel placed between the sofa and the dining table offers visual cover if needed.The 80 square metre salon, laid out with a hand-tufted rug, is classically partitioned into a lounge area with hand-made upholstered furniture and a dining area at the front of the room. The two areas are separated by a ceiling-high room divider, with an inset TV facing the sofa and bronze tiles throughout offer dazzling light effects in the natural sunlight. Almost parallel to the room divider are the panels on port and starboard side showing specific star constellations that are of personal significance to the owner. In addition, a piece of a genuine meteorite is incorporated into the interior so that the ‘cosmic’ theme is reflected manifold in the dining area. The principally used wood in the salon is “stained Amara” and the Italian leather is in “Lugano” shade.A starboard door leads from the salon into the lobby, the staircase and the guest cabins, all of which are located on the main deck. The visual highlight here is the Claus Hartmann’s sculpture depicting two stylized hippos. The Weser Island Harriersand based artist is best known for his figurehead works made for prominent ships such as the Gorch Fock. Focus Yacht Design drew the inspiration for this commission from the owner’s interest and love of nature. The superyacht’s very name Soaring recalls the free flight of an eagle. The guests on Soaring pass the bronze hippos on their way to their cabins. The four 20 square metre rooms, three with double beds and one with two single beds, all embody a particular theme - Nautilus, Ginkgo, Turtle and Bamboo. The themes are reflected in the bed heads and travertine inlays in bath, corresponding to each cabin’s theme. At the end of the passageway is a luxurious 33 square metre VIP-cabin, stretching the whole width of the superyacht, with an ensuite and a separate dressing room. Theme of the VIP cabin is waterlily. The two tenders are also stowed on the main deck. The 7.5m Compass sport and 9m limousine tenders match Soaring down to the striking line stretching across the length of their hulls and are lowered to the waterline using a crane. OWNER’S DECK The upper aft deck is used almost exclusively by the owner and this was a part of the superyacht’s concept from the very beginning. The 82 square metre stately master suite at the rear of the yacht is accessed through an 11 square metre office. Minimal furnishings, including an opulent armchair and a bed, reflect the starting idea behind Soaring’s concept of open spaces and free spirit, a motif seized upon once again in the eagle bed head on master bed. Sliding doors open on to the aft deck, offering complete privacy. A genuine dressing room of 13 square metres and a bath with a tub and a separate shower complete the owner’s grand suite. In the passageway further forward are technical rooms, as well as an additional crew cabin. All the way at the very front of the upper deck, normally reserved for the master suite in other vessels, is the library. The original and unconventional lounge is glassed-in on three sides guaranteeing amazing views. Centrally placed in the room are three white, U-formed sofas and another visual highlight is on the back wall in the form of a bookshelf made of back-lit onyx. The library can also be completely dimmed, thus converting into a private cinema. Forward of the library, the top of the tender garage allows the owner and his guests to practice their golf swings, naturally using biodegradable and water-soluble golf balls. BRIDGE DECK Soaring’s bridge deck is the uppermost deck itself. Behind the Portuguese bridge deck, the captain and his officers work in the fully integrated wheelhouse using Gyro compass, Synapsis-NX-Radar and Raytheon Anschütz Nautosteer Auto Pilot. The captain inhabits a 16 square metre cabin, next to a ships office used by the officers on board. The aft deck, equipped with a Jacuzzi three metres in diameter with an adjoining bar and a generous sun pad, is once again reserved solely for the use of the owner and his guests. By request, the crew can organize a BBQ directly on the sun pad and a sofa with table offers additional seating possibilities.
October 21, 2020
Fincantieri, the major Italian shipbuilding company, truly impresses by its numbers throughout the long history of presence in the industry. It is based in Trieste, the capital of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, northeast Italian region at the Adriatic Sea. Photo: FincantieriThe group is multinational and has twenty shipyards across the world - in Europe, the Americas and Asia. 60% of its approximately 19,000 employees work outside Italy. With a turnover of over 4 billion euros, the company builds both commercial and military vessels.Photo: FincantieriHere is a short chronological overview of this major shipbuilder’s milestones:Fincantieri was founded in 1959 as a State financial holding aimed at overseeing the main shipyards of Italy. In those times it included 8 different companies involved in ship building, repair and engine construction.Later on, in 1984, all these companies along with the holding itself converted into an operating company, the only one to have preserved the old traditions of Italian shipyards. In the 1990’s Fincantieri delivered the Crown Princess, its first cruise ship, to the Carnival Group, and, thus, began its work in the cruise industry. Photo: FincantieriIn 1991 the 67-metre Destriero was build at the Muggiano yard in La Spezia - the yacht that, almost immediately - in 1992, set the world record for the fastest transatlantic crossing with no refueling. Photo: FincantieriBefore 2001 the company focused mostly on designing and manufacturing of high value-added products which, along with cruise ships, included ferries and naval vessels. Over 50 ships were delivered over this period, 13 of them were for the Italian Navy.The Mega Yachts sector appeared among Fincantieri’s business areas after 2005. The “Fincantieri Yachts” line is aimed at the creation of large luxury yachts, specializing in both design and construction. Photo: FincantieriWith the acquisition of Manitowoc Marine Group in the USA (which became Fincantieri Marine Group) in late 2008 and the foundation of Etihad Ship Building LLC in 2010 the company confidently went on with global development and joined the US defence market. Serene, Fincantieri’s first 134-metre mega yacht, was delivered in 2012. A true masterpiece of luxury, quality and technical innovation, it deservedly won the “World Superyacht Award”Photo: FincantieriIn 2013, after the acquisition of the Norwegian group Vard, Fincantieri group doubled in size and became the fourth largest in the world (as per 2014).Photo: FincantieriThe group was quoted on the Italian Stock Exchange in 2014. The company Marine Interiors was created In the same year. It specializes in design, refitting and turnkey cabins delivery. Photo: FincantieriFurther on, in 2015, Fincantieri SI and Fincantieri (Shanghai) trading Co. Ltd. were established.
October 20, 2020