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Our feature about designing the ultimate explorer yacht got me thinking about what I’d need on my own, if you’ll forgive this moment of extreme self-indulgence. I love the forward observation lounge on Damen’s SeaXplorer series, so that’s a must. Two helicopters, too – both with hangar storage. I’d definitely need a large winter garden aft, which works in sun or snow. A long, low aft deck for carrying every conceivable support boat as well as a few dinghies for racing around tiny French Polynesian atolls. A submarine, obviously. A massive, almost obnoxious, vertical bow. Then throw in some industrial chic styling and an interior that can cope with four kids who inexplicably leave a trail of clothes and mess behind them wherever they go, and I think I’m on to a winner. And a nanny cabin. Definitely a nanny cabin. What a privilege it is to design a yacht tailored to your very specific needs from the ground up. Iconic Italian boatbuilder Paolo Vitelli got to do that with Benetti’s B.Yond series, the first of which, Goga, graces our cover this month. I spent a fascinating afternoon in the company of Paolo at his Livorno shipyard, learning all about the project. His instinct for the market remains as pure as ever; despite designing the B.Yond series for his needs, it has found an enthusiastic audience, with nine sold already. Meanwhile, if any shipyards want to tender for my very own explorer project, you’ve got my number.

Stewart Campbell
Editor

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