How Pendennis built an award-winning modern classic in Vijonara

22 March 2021

Expanding Pendennis’s already diverse portfolio of new builds is this modern sailing yacht dressed in vintage style

Over the past 30-plus years Pendennis has built a wide range of bespoke beauties from expedition yachts to catamarans in concert with the superyacht industry’s preeminent designers, but until 2016 the yard had never worked with Andre Hoek. Vijonara, a Hoek-designed sloop, was its first collaboration with the renowned Dutch designer, and the pairing was an instant success. The 38.8 metre yacht was delivered on time and on budget and won a World Superyacht Award for her beautiful, functional design, strong light-wind performance and quality of craftsmanship.

Credit: Stuart Pearce/YachtShot

“This project in particular has been a fantastic experience from start to finish,” says Hoek. Part of his Truly Classic range, Vijonara melds 1930s elegance above the waterline with cutting-edge naval architecture below. As the second Truly Classic 128, the yacht varies greatly from the first with only the hull lines and fin keel in common. “The owners had a distinct vision for her customisation to suit their lifestyle, and she has been optimised extensively for performance,” says Hoek.

“A new addition to the 128 design is a bow sprit that houses the downwind sails such as A-symmetric spinnaker or a Code sail, as well as paying homage to true vintage sailing yachts,” Hoek explains. “The deck layout has been reconfigured in line with the owners’ requirements, with a helm station positioned in front of the aft deckhouse creating a social atmosphere close to the centre cockpit, enabling the helmsman and guests to remain in close contact.” What this also achieved was it gave the owners unsurpassed privacy with the aft cockpit and deckhouse becoming an extension of their suite. They also incorporated a gym next to their stateroom that can be converted into a spare cabin if needed. Two further cabins for guests are forward of the lower saloon, offering a nice separation from the owner’s quarters.

Credit: Stuart Pearce/YachtShot

A chance encounter with Hermès’ design director of bespoke products during a St Barths Bucket regatta led the owners to collaborate with the French design house for the interior fittings. Exceptional pieces for the yacht, including a custom leather desk, sofas and club seats and a world map made of leather marquetry, were designed by the bespoke creative team and handmade by Hermès craftsmen in their workshop using supple leathers. They are a stately complement to the sapele mahogany matt joinery with traditional detailing, glossy accents and Italian walnut flooring.

Credit: Stuart Pearce/YachtShot

An extraordinary level of attention to detail is seen throughout the yacht with unique additions like an oculus in the owner’s suite with underwater lighting for viewing the undersea world, and a stainless steel steering pedestal that Hoek describes as “a piece of art in its own right”.

The construction quality matches the aesthetical beauty. Working with owner’s representative, MCM, Pendennis’ project team used modern 3D scanning technology to ensure millimetre precision in the yacht’s symmetry.

Credit: Stuart Pearce/YachtShot

Delivered in spring 2018, Vijonara picked up a Neptune for Best Sailing Yacht between 30 and 59.9 metres at the 2019 World Superyacht Awards, an accolade that surely influenced the owners of the fourth TC128 to follow in Vijonara’s wake and also choose Pendennis to build their yacht. This next Hoek collaboration, Project K2, is currently underway at the Falmouth yard for a fall 2020 delivery.