German builder YYachts has delivered the first unit in its Y9 sailing yacht series named Bella. The yard's new flagship features design and naval architecture by Bill Tripp and measures 29.71 metres in length, eclipsing its former flagship, Prevail, by 2.3 metres.
Bella is a performance cruiser built entirely in carbon fibre, and has been carefully designed to sail with as little as two crew. Sail and rig settings are adjusted at the push of a button for maximum operational efficiency, while the mainsheet is centred on the bimini top and kept out of sight within the Park Avenue main boom, keeping the social cockpit below clear of lines. A secondary cockpit and helm station are positioned further aft.
Her maiden voyage from Greifswald to Cannes saw the sloop and its four crew test the mettle of its 242-square-metre main sail together with a 617-square-metre gennaker. On the passage, Bella reached a top speed of 26 knots.
One of the most innovative design features of the Y9 is a tender garage that sits transversely across the stern, providing additional room for the private owner's apartment, comfortable guest cabins and a generous crew area. The garage on board Bella houses a carbon composite YTender catamaran.
The yacht's interior design comes as a collaboration between Scandinavian firms Norm Architects and Design Unlimited under the principle of "soft minimalism", evident in the yacht's oiled oak and grey fabrics and panels featured throughout. Katrine Goldstein, managing director of Norm Architects, noted the studio's vision of a pared-back interior, with special attention given to the sliding doors and inbuilt storage space so that it would "effortlessly blend in" with the vessel's architectural framework.
Bella comes with a hydro generation package sourced from Oceanvolt, a hard top bimini covered with 14 square metres of solar panels and an extensive battery package meaning the yacht is able to generate renewable power either being moored or underway. Equally important to the yacht's onboard features was the level of sound absorption, leading the yard to consult with noise specialists for an especially "quiet yacht".
Ultimately, the project is meant to expand the offerings of a sailing vessel to a growing number of prospective customers. According to Tripp, this meant developing a "high-end series" to be not only "appealing", but also "obtainable" in order to "attract new people to the sport and to tug people out of powerboats into something far more interesting".
The Y9 comes in three versions: the standard version, the pilot saloon version and a custom version with an almost unlimited range of design options.
Bella joins YYachts' existing lineup of Y7 and Y8 series of sailing yachts, as well as its custom division, which previously delivered the 27.4 metre Prevail that was selected as a finalist in this year's BOAT International Design and Innovation Awards.