The 36-metre addition to Azimut's Grande series may have been launched in the shadow of its bigger sibling, but still has plenty of new features to call its own.
Making her debut at the 2022 Cannes Yachting Festival, the Azimut Grande 36M came onto the scene with the ambition of an only child looking to stand out in a family of golden children. It was an innate part of the brief for the Azimut Grande 36 that she outdoes both the 38-metre Trideck Grande and the Grande 35M (the model that she would be replacing) but in very different ways. The overarching goal was for this yacht to have a more open design and also be more eco-friendly than other Grande yachts that came before her. Add into this brief a beguiling Achille Salvagni interior design, and she certainly makes her mark on the Grande family.
“The shipyard wanted a young sister after the successful Trideck 38, so the family feeling has been very important since the early beginning in order to keep the Azimut DNA intact, but they wanted something with even more openness than the Trideck 38, and this is where the challenge began,” says Alberto Mancini, who designed the exteriors and layout for both the Grande 36M and Trideck. While he was tasked with making the yacht more spacious, he also had to keep her below 299GT.
The Grande 36M was started on spec, and Azimut briefed Mancini that the design should give guests a feeling of openness, freshness and innovation immediately upon stepping aboard. The Grande 36M introduces the first semi-walkaround upper deck in the series. The upper deck is set over one level without any steps, with the deck running from the stern to almost the extreme bow. “It’s a feature never seen before on a yacht this size,” says Federico Lantero, head of product design for Azimut. The builder refers to this as the Infinity Skydeck, and it’s topped by a glass house of an upper deck saloon at the centre.
To achieve more usable indoor-outdoor space on the upper deck, Mancini decided to open up the upper deck saloon on three sides with full-height, electrically operated sliding glass doors. When open, the sliding doors to port and starboard disappear completely into pockets in the superstructure. “The two large side decks naturally become terraces without the need to create artificially opening balconies,” says Mancini. “The result is above my expectations – the external-internal passages no longer have barriers.” To further cement this feeling of openness, Mancini created a very low bulwark design to emphasise the view and the contact with the sea. “So we get an extension of the external deck inside and out, creating a real beach house effect,” he adds.
Forward of the bridge on upper deck is a good-sized bow lounge with a settee, table and sunpads and a glass-enclosed spa tub set all the way forward. Again, it’s all presented on one level, which makes the upper deck feel utterly seamless. For a bit more exterior living, guests can climb up to the partially covered sundeck, which has excellent sightlines from the forward-facing seating, as well as lounge chairs aft.
At the same time, Azimut also specified that the Grande 36M had to be even more fuel efficient and have lower emissions than her “little sister”, the Grande 35M, Lantero says. “In fact, building on the success of the Grande 35M - which was already the best-in-class boat for efficiency - with further hull optimisations, including the shape of the wave piercer hull, the Grande 36M sets the bar even higher,” he says. “Even weighing 10 tons more and carrying 10 gross tons more volume, she maintains the same levels of consumption as her smaller sister and in some conditions can even consume less.”
The Grande 36M was born as a continuous design challenge within Azimut’s Low Emissions Yachts range, which aims for 100 per cent of Azimut yachts to offer a reduced environmental impact. This translates to the yachts being capable of guaranteeing a reduction of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 20 to 30 per cent in the main speed range. The Grand 36M has a high-efficiency D2P Displacement-to-Planing hull design created by Pierluigi Ausonio of Studio PLANA in collaboration with the Azimut | Benetti Research and Development department. The hull has a fine-tuned wave-piercing design which helps optimise fuel efficiency at high and low speeds.
She also boasts extensive use of carbon fibre to reduce the weight of the superstructure, making her lighter and more efficient. “These innovative design features introduced by Azimut make it possible to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 30 per cent compared to boats of the same weight and size with a traditional chine hull,” Lantero says. The Grande 36M is available with either twin MTU 2,200hp or 2,400hp engines, the latter of which allows her to reach speeds of up to 24 knots and cruise at 18 knots.
The interiors of the Azimut Grande 36M were conceived to provide wide living spaces, and different layout options are offered in order to give owners the opportunity to choose a layout that would best suit their lifestyle and habits. Clients can choose between two configurations of the main deck and between three different layouts of the upper deck. The main deck, for instance, can be had as two lounge areas or a more traditional layout with saloon and dining area forward. The skylounge on the upper deck might be configured as an indoor-outdoor dining area, veranda or as a cinema and lounge.
Azimut called upon Achille Salvagni for the interior design, making the creation of the 36M a fully Italian affair with all of the design and build team hailing from Italy. Achille Salvagni’s design style is defined by unexpected details that catch the eye and continue to be revealed the more time you spend on board. The ceiling above the dining table, for instance, is inset with a lighting fixture that is a sculptural work of art. Much like a relief map, it conjures up feelings of mountains. In other places, lamps grow out of the furniture, lending an organic, seamless aesthetic.
“For the Grande 36M, Achille Salvagni designed some elements that can evoke unexpected enchantment, a subtle touch of conceptual beauty: the red lamp near the sofa, the jigsaw puzzle or ying-yang symbol on the wall, the organic lamp over the dining table. Details that break the rules and dare to amaze,” Lantero says. In both the main saloon and upper deck lounge, the interior designer chose round sofas that allow guests to have excellent views of the world outside and also support congenial conversation and a feeling of connection.
“We had crystal-clear ideas for this project: the Grande 36M had to be barrierless in the very sense of the word,” Lantero says. This can be seen in the extensive use of glazing, open plan layout and even in the eco-friendly performance, which breaks down barriers on where the yacht can efficiently be used. The Grande line now comprises five designs including the existing Grande 27M, Grande 32M and 38 metre Grande Trideck. The Grande 36M is an obvious relative to her Grande series kin, but thanks to new design features inside and out – and below the waterline – she handily meets Azimut’s brief to give her sisters a run for their money.Read More/Inside the 38m Azimut Grande Trideck flagship