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Megayacht Design ODYSSEUS Treasures the Ancients of the Mediterranean

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With a name like Odysseus and elements of Greek and Roman architecture, Souhaib Rouissi’s megayacht design pays homage to the ancient mighty empires of the Mediterranean.
Roman inspired ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
Roman inspired ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi

In Ancient Greek mythology, Odysseus was a Greek hero famed for his intellect who devised the cunning plan to take the city of Troy by secretly gaining entry via a giant hollow horse and opening the gates to allow the remainder of the army to storm the city under the cover of darkness. Having come away victorious from the Siege of Troy, his 10 year journey home across the seas is documented in the epic poem “Odyssey”.

It is in the home country of the young yacht designer Souhaib Rouissi, that amongst the collection of the Bardo National Museum in Tunis, Tunisia, lies an Imperial Roman-era mosaic titled “Odysseus and the Sirens” and in many ways offers insight to the design elements of Rouissi’s superyacht concept.

Odysseus and the sirens mosaic
Odysseus and the sirens mosaic from the 2nd century AD held in Tunisia.

In the historic mosaic at Tunisia, Odysseus stands tied to the ship’s mast so he can hear the beautiful Sirens (mermaid-like creatures) without the ability to be drawn in by their call. The ship on which he stands on resembles a Roman Trireme with its naval ram styled bow.

A Roman trireme boat
A typical Roman trireme boat with naval ram bow.

This ram was a naval weapon in the Greek/Roman antiquity fitted to the prows of warships to rupture the hull of the enemy ship. The preferred method of attack was to come in from astern, with the aim not of creating a single hole, but of rupturing as big a length of the enemy vessel as possible.

It’s fitting then, that a young Tunisian yacht designer Souhaib Rouissi, would name his 114m megayacht design ODYSSEUS and give it a prominent and unique ram styled bow. Souhaib states “Roman ships were the base of my inspiration, motifs, symbols and architecturally”.

The ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
The ram bow is a unique feature of the ODYSSEUS megayacht design. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi

With ODYSSEUS, Roman design influence begins with the provision of space. Historically speaking Roman architecture has often drawn inspiration from Greek design but elaborates further with ornate detailing and expansive use of space. An example of this is ancient Roman housing that made extensive use of patios and air circulation for temperature lowering and it is these influences that Souhaib has chosen to carry through to areas such as the megayacht’s forward deck seating area.

Looking aft, free space also abounds where the patio style seating nearly spans the width of the deck and is only intersected by a waterfall that flows from the deck above. Just past the waterfall, steps lead up to a Roman ended pool with a gentle graded access leading down inside it.

Starboard doors open on ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
Open spacious areas are big elements of the ODYSSEUS megayacht design. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi
pool detail of ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
The pool detail of ODYSSEUS megayacht with sunbeds and seating aplenty. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi
aft detail of ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
aft detail of ODYSSEUS megayacht design. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi
Aft profile of ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
Steps and pillars create strong Romanesque features of the ODYSSEUS megayacht. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi

Of course a lot could be said about the symbolism of pillars and they were certainly a significant feature of Greek and Roman architecture. It’s little surprise then that Souhaib has also included these into the ODYSSEUS megayacht design. They work particularly well in the patio area giving those relaxing outdoors an air of ancient royalty and support the aft upper deck.

Roman pillar detail of ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
Roman pillar detail of the ODYSSEUS megayacht design. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi

A meander (Greek: Μαίανδρος) is a decorative border constructed from one continuous line, shaped into a repeated motif. Meanders were common decorative elements in Greek and Roman art and so we find one in rose gold tastefully detailing the length of ODYSSEUS on each side of the yacht. Marble was also a material that the Romans were responsible for beginning to heavily incorporate into architecture and so Souhaib has made sure to feature this and other Romanesque substances throughout ODYSSEUS as well.

side profile of ODYSSEUS megayacht design by Souhaib Rouissi
The Roman style meander runs the full length of ODYSSEUS. Credit: Souhaib Rouissi

These days the history and legacy of the Mediterranean can still be found throughout the region’s landmass but with a megayacht like ODYSSEUS, reflections of empires that once were could be found on the sea as well.

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Superyachts & Marine

Monaco Yacht Show 2020 Is Still On and Will Run as a Not-for-Profit Event

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Organizers of the Monaco Yacht Show 2020 are pushing forward with plans to host the show at Port Hercule from 23 to 29 September this year, but under much different circumstances than previous years.
Monaco Yacht Show Port Hercule
Port Hercule ready to welcome superyachts and guests. Credit: Monaco Yacht Show

Undoubtedly the jewel in the crown of yacht shows, the fate of Monaco Yacht Show 2020 was temporarily undetermined as event organizers Informa decided how to proceed amidst the COVID-19 environment.

In contrast to many other events that have now been canceled, Informa in conjunction with the Principality of Monaco, has chosen to proceed cautiously given the time-frame they have to work with and the expected gradual easing of lockdown restrictions both in Monaco, Europe and internationally.

Held at Port Hercule in Monaco, this year’s show will be more “intimate” than in previous years (also interpreted as much smaller) and will be produced as a not-for-profit event to support the recovery of the yachting industry, providing a platform for designers, brokers, shipyards and industry personnel to connect with customers and network in a safe environment.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on all industries, not least the international yachting community,” said Informa CEO Charlie McCurdy. “As we move to the other side of the pandemic, all parts of the industry need to work collaboratively to ensure a speedy return and recovery. We are playing our part by hosting a not-for-profit Monaco Yacht Show in 2020, providing an opportunity for the community to come together, share ideas, meet with customers and start to rebuild positive momentum.”

Acknowledging the changed conditions under which the show will need to be held, Informa was quick to stress “the proposed event will employ the highest standards of hygiene and cleanliness” and are committed to prioritizing the safety of participants and visitors.

Monaco Yacht Show Lounge
Guest lounge at the Monaco Yacht Show in previous years. Credit: Monaco Yacht Show

In support of the in-person event Jean Castellini, Minister of Finance and Economy for Monaco shared, “In the aftermath of COVID-19, it is the responsibility of the Monaco Government to do everything we can to help businesses and industries recover quickly. In this spirit, we are working with Informa to finalise details of the Monaco Yacht Show 2020, which will prioritize the health and safety of all participants, whilst providing direct support to the international yachting community, ensuring it can connect with customers and accelerate the recovery of what is an increasingly important industry for the region.”

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Superyachts & Marine

Superyacht Builder Sanlorenzo in Talks to Buy a Majority Stake in Perini Navi

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Superyacht builder Sanlorenzo has confirmed interest in the possible acquisition of Perini Navi.
Perini Navi Italian Shipyard
Italian shipyard Perini Navi in talks with Sanlorenzo. Credit: Perini Navi

Sanlorenzo has confirmed they are in current talks regarding the acquisition of share capital of Perini Navi and has obtained an exclusivity period to carry out the necessary research and analysis required.

Founded in 1983 by Fabio Perini, Perini Navi has been a world-leading Italian shipyard that specializes in sailing boats over 40 meters, boasting iconic builds like that of the Maltese Falcon. It is currently owned by Fenix, the holding company of the Tabacchi family, Lamberto Tacoli, and Fabio Perini (indirectly).

Sailboat builder Perini Navi to be acquired by Sanlorenzo
Building sailing yachts since 1983. Credit: Perini Navi

Should the negotiations go ahead, Perini Navi will likely be majority-owned by Sanlorenzo with Italian newspaper Milano Finanza reporting a probable 70% controlling stake taken by Sanlorenzo and the remainder being held by the Tabacchi family.

“The transaction would be in line with the Sanlorenzo business model … and would enable Sanlorenzo to expand its business perimeter and further consolidate its presence in the superyacht sector,” Sanlorenzo said in a statement.

Perini Navi E-Volution sailing yacht design
Perini Navi’s sailing yacht concept “E-Volution”. Credit: Perini Navi

In a separate statement by Perini Navi, the company confirmed it was looking to restructure its debt under Italian bankruptcy law, in order to remain operational at this time stating the goal is to “overcome a moment of significant financial strain, which has been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact over all markets.”

Perini Navi’s Board of Directors “intends to preserve the Company’s business and heritage, thus ensuring continuity to the important orders currently in build, as well as achieving the highest possible level of creditors’ satisfaction, in compliance with the process to be undertaken.”

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Heesen Yacht’s 55m Project Castor Launched Ahead of Sea Trials

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Heesen Yachts launches 55m Project Castor “YN 19055” ready for its sea trials ahead of August 2020 delivery to the owner.
Waiting for the dock to be flooded.
Waiting for the dock to be flooded. Credit: Heesen yachts

Launched this month at Heesen Yacht‘s Dutch facility in Oss ahead of its sea trials, the 55 meter (180ft) Project Castor “YN 19055” was initially built on speculation and sold to an experienced American superyacht owner last May.

Following Dutch health and safety guidelines, workers at the shipyard were able to continue with operations throughout the COVID-19 pandemic by halving the number of employees working at any one time and working in two shifts to ensure delivery of the yacht would still be on schedule.

Commenting on the shipyard’s operations, Owners Representative Rupert Connor of Luxury Yacht Group noted, “We have been beyond impressed with how the Heesen team adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

At 760GT, Project Castor is the most voluminous 55m currently offered by a Northern European shipyard and the fast-displacement hull designed by Van Oossanen Naval Architects is the fourth hull in Heesen’s 55m Steel Class series.

The formidable exterior of Project Castor designed by Omega Architects.
The formidable exterior of Project Castor designed by Omega Architects. Credit: Heesen Yachts

With a sporty exterior design courtesy of Omega Architects’ Frank Laupman, Project Castor has been built to accommodate twelve guests in six staterooms and in a first for this particular class, has been configured with four spacious guest cabins on the lower deck and the owner’s VIP suite located on the bridge deck.

Bannenberg & Rowell has once again been tasked with the interior design and have layered neutral tones combined with powerful accents of color to create an environment that has wide appeal. Smoked Oak Chevron parquet flooring, Calacatta, and Pietra Grey marbles have also been are utilized throughout along with other fine materials.

Project Castor YN 19055 ready for sea trials
Project Castor YN 19055 ready for sea trials. Credit: Heesen Yachts

Powered by two MTU 8V 4000 M63 diesel main engines, Project Castor will have a top speed of 15.5 knots and a range of 4,500 nautical miles at a cruising speed of 13 knots and is set to undergo sea trials in the North Sea shortly.

Project Castor is currently on schedule for delivery to the new owner later this year in August 2020.

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