Italian shipyard Cantiere delle Marche The shipyard has been looking for a client for a new range of Flexplorer Expedition yachts since June, and has already commissioned a total of over €17m for the project. Now that the owner of the first 39.4-metre Flexplorer has been found, construction has begun at the Cantiere delle Marche docks and will be completed by 2020.
The yacht will «have all the features of a pure explorer» with «an extra dose of flexibility and functionality», the shipyard claims.
The steel and aluminium hull of Flexplorer, designed by Hydro Tec, features an almost vertical bow and a spacious deck. A key design feature is the flip-up aft bulwarks on either side of the boat, creating what is known as an infinity deck, giving guests easy access to the water and to the tenders.
The aft deck is equipped with a crane, which allows easy loading of a tender weighing up to 2,500kg and up to 8.5m long. When not in use the crane is stored folded up on the deck.
Powered by a pair of Caterpillar C32 diesel engines rated at 1600 or 1800 hp, she will have a cruising speed of 14 knots. At a cruising speed of 10 knots, Flexplorer can travel up to 5,000 nautical miles.
Flexplorer can accommodate 12 guests in five cabins with twin Pullman berths. Three of the cabins will sleep five crew members. The first Flexplorer will also feature a gymnasium and additional skylights in the deck.
«This is a new class of yacht that expands the potential use of research vessels», according to Vasil Truja, director of the Cantiere delle Marche's Technical Department.
He says the yacht's broad, thick hull is equally well suited to the North West Sea Route as it is to anchor in Saint-Tropez.