When perfection becomes an objective
YACHT CLASS N°6 (Sept-oct-nov 2016)
When we learned that she was calling at Nice, we run to the Old Port to join her. Her young captain, Tripp Hock, a former trader, generously lifted the veil on this 45 metre, at the edge of perfection, that symbolises Heesen’s savoir-faire.
Text : Alain Brousse - Photos : Kurt Arigo & Emilio Bianchi
Given her origins, we were not surprised to learn that she was entirely built in aluminum. Heesen has indeed made this material its speciality. We were not surprised either that her exterior design was penned Omega Architects, an independent design studio that has been working for the yachting industry for about a dozen years now and frequently collaborates with Heesen. Between them, the synergy is almost perfect, as underlines Franck Laupman, the studio’s founder. Hence an obvious time saving during the gestation. As for the owner, this is not his first yacht but his captain hasn’t changed in 16 years: Tripp Hock who, after working in Wall Street, changed direction to take the helm of large units. He has closely followed the construction of Amore Mio and speaks highly of Heesen, a shipyard “obsessed with perfection and detail”. Thus, before the yacht was delivered, she underwent a three-day sea trial, mainly consisting of thorough tests, with for instance the “crash stop”. Amore Mio speeds at nearly 30 knots. Following the order of a motor engineer, the captain reverses the direction: forward/neutral/reverse… and 350 metres and 56 seconds later, the yachts stops. Another important test is the acoustic insulation on cruising speed, at 23 knots: 59 dB in the master and 62 dB in the wheelhouse, a result that places this 45 metre in the category of quiet units. A result she owes to Heesen’s well-carried out professional and meticulous work. Actually, everything reflects this perfection the shipyard wants to reach. For Amore Mio’s owner, sailing has to be around 20 knots. Heesen in-house naval architect thus choose a semi-displacement hull, endowed with a pair of MTU 16V4000 M73 (2 x 3 920hp). An incursion in the engine room reinforces our impression that the shipyard masters both the electric and electronic equipment. These two MTU will run in optimal conditions, with an air conditioning system that should stabilize the temperature around 50° maximum. During the trial the recorded speed was 30 knots, but a half-load makes it significantly decrease: 27,5 knots. She gets her optimal autonomy at 12 knots: 2 750 miles. However, according to the captain, they barely opt for this speed “much too slow for the owner”. During her delivery trip from the Netherlands to Italy, Amore Mio had faced many weather conditions - not always favourable – but never failed. She is equipped with three Seakeeper M26000 “zero speed” gyro stabilizers but also with an “Idromar” desalinator (6 000 l a day). Although intended to a private use, this yacht will cover thousands of miles a year, minimum 2 000, if not with her owner at least with his many friends, fan of cruises. These ones will often be punctuated by mooring dedicated to nautical leisure. Thus, the stern garage hosts toys: 4 SeaBob, a 300 hp Seadoo and a Yamaha jet, plus the tender, an old-fashioned mahagony runabout from the Swiss Boesch, propelled by a 250hp Yanmar diesel engine. Back aft, the transom lowers and acts as a large bathing platform, before an internal crane places them on the water. The owner also has a passion for yoga that he practises almost exclusively outside. Thus he requested his yacht to be endowed with a large sunbridge of 90 m2, whose aft will house the necessary equipment to meditation, but also deckchairs. The other half of this surface, sheltered by a large hard-top, is dedicated to gastronomy: a table with a bench and seats for ten, facing a kitchenette with a barbecue and many storage. Diners will be held on the cockpit table.
Amore Mio has a “widebody” front, thus the foredeck can be reached via the wheelhouse. It offers a relaxation area in the deckhouse. At the bow level are located, a technical deck with the main gears but also a large hood, concealing the ready-for-use lifeboat. There is also another storage room, hidden by a hatch above the stern. Quite appreciated by the captain, it hosts the fenders and can also be used for tinkering. The first steps of this visit has shown us that Heesen deserves its reputation of meticulous shipyard. Down to the slightest details such as some pieces in stainless steel, discipline is ever-present. This upscale level of finishing is also apparent inside. The interior layout was penned by Cristiano Gatto, a designer who has managed to impose a certain style… or at least, has he managed to convince the owners that a combination of wood, leather and fabrics, with discreet touches of stainless steels with austere geometrical forms, have certainly nothing depressing.
Amore Mio’s decoration is classy and fortunate, this is obvious within the first metres inside this three decks. Like many large units, the lounge and living room are gathered in a single space. This one is quite luminous, even though base furniture occupy half the height underneath the lateral windows. Cristiano Gatto has favoured LED ceiling spotlights. A very nice indirect lighting is also provided by the furnitures. Adjacent to the dining room, the main kitchen gathers an upscale equipment that Cristiano Gatto even personally tested on the day of the final inspection, by cooking an Italian meal for the whole crew. Let’s remain on the main deck to enter by starboard into the master where the atmosphere is quiet and refined. The partition facing the king size bed conceals a bathroom and a dressing room. The guest will be housed on the lower deck between the engine room and the crew quarters and will share two twins and two doubles, all en-suite. Not intended to charter, Amore Mio has yet all the potential for it. On the eve of summer, she was getting ready to welcome her owner in a Mediterranean setting. Then, she will undoubtedly join the fleet of units gathered for the Monaco Yacht Show.
Frank Laupman 100 yachts to his name
In the early 80’s, after completing his master of architecture, he joined the automotive constructor Volvo, then carried on with an industrial design company before joining PB Design (Pieter Beeldsnijder), which has conceived more than 2 500 boats. He worked for a few years at Heesen before founding his own studio, Omega Architects, in 1995 while maintaining close links with the Oss shipyard. He thus conceived Project Nova 50M, the first Heesen diesel hybrid, but also the 47-metre Ruya. To this day, Frank Laupman has penned about a hundred units, including Amore Mio he is particularly fond of.
- Overall length : 45 mètres
- Max beam : 8,40 m
- Draft : 2,67 m
- Fuel : 52 000 l
- Water : 10 000 l
- Déplacement à mi charge : 258 t
- Material : aluminium coque & superstructures
- Engine : 2 x MTU 16V4000 M73L
- Power : 2 x 3 920 ch (2 x 2 880 kW)
- Max speed à mi charge : 27,5 knots
- Range at 12 knots : 2 800 milles
- Naval architect : Heesen Yachts
- Exterior designer : Omega Architects
- Interior designer : Cristiano Gatto
- Builder : Heesen Yachts (Oss – Pays-Bas)