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Iconic yachts: Exuma

14 January 2015By Roger Lean-Vercoe

Exuma is a newly developed motor yacht design that French naval architect Philippe Briand calls Vitruvius, with the keywords ‘further, greener and sleeker’.

Built entirely from aluminium, the Vitruvian yachts are long, lean and lightweight. Designed to create less resistance to the water (drag) than a conventional displacement hull, they consume significantly less fuel and therefore emit relatively low quantities of CO2. The Italian classification society RINA awarded Exuma ‘Green Yacht of 2010’.

This sleek greyhound of the oceans has a knife-like bow, delicately curved and almost vertical, designed to increase waterline length and minimise pitching. Round bilges minimise drag-producing wetted surface, while her shallow transom is slightly scalloped to reduce the draught requirements of her twin, high-skew propellers.

Drag reduction was also achieved by choosing a drop-down bowthruster, while the required fin area for the pair of Quantum zero-speed stabilisers was able to be reduced because of the innate stability of the hull.

Adding serious distinction to Exuma’s minimal superstructure and long foredeck are the convex glass windows that ring her bridge deck. The cost of such glamour is the lack of a sundeck above the bridge deck, which means that her open deck areas are limited to the aft portions of the bridge and main decks.

To the owner, though, this limited deck space is not a downside, as his and his wife’s needs are more than satisfied by a large spa pool (featuring 55 water-jets) flanked by sunbathing mattresses on the bridge deck aft, and by the similarly sized sunbathing area on the main deck aft, forward of which is a extendable dining table that can comfortably seat up to 14 guests.

The large spa pool on the aft upper deck 

Understated interiors

Perini Navi’s in-house interior designer, Bernardo Chichi, worked with the owner to create the volumes and floor plan of Exuma, while Daria Nobokov was responsible for fabrics and interior decorations. The real triumph of the interior is its understated and extremely tasteful elegance. Set against a background of natural white oak and grey-stained brushed oak panelling and laid teak floors, the furniture and fabrics of the saloons blend comfort with pure modern design.

The master suite is set across the full beam of Exuma just forward of the starboard side entrance lobby. Here the request was for two separate bedrooms, a double and a single, together with a bathroom and a separate shower room. In the same style as the remaining three lower deck guest cabins, the bed is set athwartships, providing magnificent ocean views.

Despite their lower deck location, each en suite guest cabin also has excellent exterior visibility. A fourth compartment on this level is a gymnasium. A sliding service door connects this lower deck guest area directly to the crew area, including four cabins, a small laundry, a crew mess and galley.

A 17th century Japanese screen adds a focal point in the owner's suite 

Tenders and toys

Directly above the crew quarters of Exuma lie two large garages that house a 3.7 metre Hov Pod hovercraft and a five metre amphibious vehicle. Just forward of the garages, two flush-topped deck lockers house the 4.3 metre rescue tender and a huge Sea-Doo RXT 250 jet ski. A third, refrigerated, locker serves as a garbage store. At the yacht’s stern, a wide upward-opening transom door forward of the bathing platform reveals an even larger garage where yacht’s main tender, a 6.4 metre Castoldi jet, is stowed.

The bridge is fully electronic with its five screens displaying conning, full ECDIS navigation and X- and S-band radars, while special features include a night-vision camera and a navigational display that provides a useful ‘Google Earth’ 3-D style visualisation of bays and anchorages. Outside the bridge’s pantograph doors are a pair of wing stations whose very comprehensive instrumentation includes a chart display screen.

At her optimised cruising speed of 12 knots, Exuma is forecast to deliver an impressive range of over 5,500 miles from her 75,000 litre fuel tanks.

This first vessel in a new generation of Perini Navi/Picchiotti motor yachts was bound to make ripples in the superyacht design world, and indeed was joint winner of the Motor Yacht of the Year award alongside Eclipse at the World Superyacht Awards 2011.

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Perini Navi   49.5 m |   2010

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