YARD UPDATE '07: Feadship

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Four launches and 14 more in progress… June 2007

The Feadship consortium, made up of the Royal Van Lent and Royal De Vries yards, as well as the De Voogt design and engineering studio, delivered four yachts in the first half of this year — two from Royal Van Lent’s Kaag Island yard and two from Royal De Vries’s yard in Arlsmeer.
Royal De Vries’ launched the 51.2m (168ft) Gallant Lady, yard number 672, the eighth Feadship of the same name and for the same owner. She is notable for the fact that a substantial proportion of her superstructure is composite, so as to reduce weight and draught. The owners of this one intend her to spend time on a shallow-draught quay outside one of their waterside properties. Two 1,000hp Caterpillars push her along.
Next Royal De Vries delivered was Anna, yard number 673, a 67m (220ft) powered by twin 2,680hp Cats. She has a Michael Leach interior.
Meanwhile the Royal Van Lent yard delivered the 61.2m (201ft) Secret, yard number 795, which features an interior by Jim Harris, based on a concept by Larvor. She is pushed along by twin 2,000hp Cats.

“Our semi-custom models are for a new breed of owners that don’t want the hassle of a full-custom project,” says president of Feadship of America, Francois van Well.  


And June this year saw the completion of the 44.7m (147ft) Space, the first of Feadship’s new and eagerly awaited semi-custom F45 Vantages. With standard exterior styling by De Voogt, she actually boasts a striking Donald Starkey interior rather than one of the four off-the-shelf proposals by Sinot Design Associates — which are marketed as the ‘Milano’, ‘Miami’, ‘Monaco’ and ‘Nautical’. Weighing in at just under the ‘500GT’ rule, which apart from less regulation means more space, as over 500GT would mean probably losing a cabin, the F45 Vantage is priced around the €27 million to €28 million mark, significantly cheaper than had it been a full-custom project. The standard engines are twin 1,055hp MTUs.
“Our semi-custom models are for a new breed of owners that don’t want the hassle of a full-custom project,” says president of Feadship of America, Francois van Well. “They don’t see why buying a new superyacht — an increasingly popular life-style choice — should be so complex and require either in-depth experience or the hiring of specialist… They simply want to order a premium superyacht, choose the style of the interior to their own tastes and then take possession no more than a year later of a perfect product… After all that’s what they are used to doing when it comes to most other purchasing decisions in their lives… For instance, it takes two years to build a Vantage, but we don’t need the client onboard until we are well into the build so the delivery time can actually be relatively quick once the owner comes onboard.”
Also brand new is the Feadship Tender, a 7m (23ft) catamaran-hulled tender with a single sterndrive that is cable of 30 knots, that has been designed to fit the F45 Vantage’s garage, but should one assumes find interest among other Feadships. Appropriately styled by Sinot, which also did the Vantage, it is available in both open and closed versions and can cater for up to 10 passengers. The one for Space is an open version with a drop-down bow door for beach landings.
Beyond that, there are no fewer than 14 other Feadship projects presently in hand, seven of which are actually in build and five that are at design and engineering stages. Of those physically in progress three are under construction at Royal Van Lent, three are at Royal De Vries and one is scheduled to start her fit out at De Vries’s Makkum facility, formerly the Amels facility and now known as Feadship XL.
At Royal Van Lent work is progressing on F45 Vantage numbers two and three, whose yard numbers are 797 (Harle) and 799 respectively. Both those will get the off-the-shelf Sinot interiors. They feature the standard Miami interiors.
Then there is also Royal Van Lent yard number 798 in progress, which is a 67.0m (220ft) that has styled outside and inside by John Munford. She will accommodate two 8m (25ft) tenders and provide a helicopter landing pad forward. Her interior will be quite traditional. She completes in ’08.
Royal De Vries is also busy with the first two of its new 39m (128ft) semi-custom series, the ‘SL 39’, which makes use of a standard technical platform, but is open to interpretation as regards exterior and interior styling. For instance, the first one, yard number 675, features a De Voogt exterior and Terence Disdale interior. But the second will get an exterior drawn by Guido de Groot and an interior by the Bannenberg studio. With the standard-fit twin 1,057hp 12V2000 M70 MTUs, prices for the SLs begin at around €23 million.

Royal De Vries’s Makkum site is busy fitting out project number ‘1001’, its first ‘Feadship XL’...

Beyond the regular Feadship activity, Royal De Vries’s Makkum facility is busy fitting out project number ‘1001’, its first ‘Feadship XL’ project. She is a 75m (246ft) steel/aluminium motoryacht designed by De Voogt and with an Alberto Pinto interior. She should eventually deliver for December ’08. She will get twin 2,680hp 3516B DI-TA Cats.
Moreover, two more Feadship XLs are on order — one of which is around the 75m mark and the other much larger. Alas no more is presently available as regards their specifications.
Just two steel/aluminium Feadships delivered during in ’06 — the Royal De Vries-built 65.20m (214ft) Callisto, which has a Terry Disdale interior, and the Royal Van Lent-built 60.96m (200ft) April Fool, which sports a Janet Leroy interior.
What we know as Feadship includes no fewer than 10 separate companies, including interior and technical specialists, and four shipbuilding operations, the three fit-out facilities and the fabrication operation. Slob. In all the group employs around 1,000 people directly, plus another 1,000 indirectly. Its capacity is now said to stretch way beyond its biggest launch to date, the high performance 86m (282ft) but narrow-beamed (11.65m) Ecstasea, which delivered at Royal Van Lent for Roman Abramovich in ‘04. The De Vries Makkum site can build up to 125m (410ft) or so and Royal Van Lent’s hook up with a Rotterdam shipbuilder suggests it could go as large as 180m (590ft).

© Phil Draper