Wally and Hermès — pushing the boundaries...

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Wally and Hermès — pushing the boundaries...


A joint venture between the trendiest yachtbuilder of them all and the Paris-based luxury brand has come up with something quite amazing, a 58m ‘green’ motoryacht concept that suggests a maximum sustainable cruise speed of 12 knots in anything up to a Force 4 breeze and a maximum beam aft of 38m! This brings a whole new meaning to a luxury life afloat - a step or two even beyond the 'Wally Island' concept promoted a few year ago. What's more the JV company known as WHY (Wally Hermes Yachts) has already built a full-size mock-up - yes 1:1 scale! - of the three guest levels at a cost of several million euros in Ancona with which interested parties can engage. But will it sell?


Made public on the eve of the 2009 Monaco Yacht Show, the deal was originally hatched between Wally president Luca Bassani and Hermès’ artistic director Pierre-Alexis Dumas a couple of years ago. The depth of the resulting vision is undeniable, although best not mention the practicalities of such a vessel!
The usual and claimed ultra-efficient underwater profile comes from Norwegian designer Roar Ramde; it’s known as the ‘Ramform’ and has apparently been employed for ocean survey vessels for many years. Wally’s favourite naval architect Mauro Sculli was charged with translating the platform to suit yachting requirements. Tank testing at SSPA facilities in Sweden has already been carried out. With an LOA of around 58m (190ft), her projected displacement would be around 2,400 tonnes.
In terms of accommodation, she is truly immense. That 38m (ft) beam aft culminates in an awesome beach-terrace transom. In all the design suggests around 3,400 square-metres (11,150 square-feet) of ‘living area’ would be available to 12 guests and the proposed crew complement of around 20.
The muted ‘green’ systems aboard would include diesel-electric propulsion that could deliver an autonomous range equivalent to four Atlantic crossings, the latest-generation lithium-ion batteries, and 900 square-metres (9,680 square-feet) of ‘thermo-photovoltaic’ panels on hull sides and superstructure, to name but the biggest spec items.
The promised features list is vast and includes a 3m-wide 130m-long on-deck promenade and a 25m-long heat-regulated swimming pool that curls round inside the bow. One can't quite see what would happen in a following sea or even a short short shop come to think of it, but as a vision, it's fabulous.
Various interior schemes are on offer from Denis Montel at Paris-based interior design firm RDAI, which has worked with Hermès on various retail projects in the past. Full-scale mock-ups of the living areas are planned.
Let’s all hope a client is found!
For more, www.why-yachts.com.

© Phil Draper