Princess Yachts and Bentley Motors are on a joint mission to navigate land and sea
Unveiled in Cannes at this year’s boat show, Princess’ new 62 model is here to prove that when it comes to luxury yachts, size isn’t always everything. At a more modest 19.34m long, the 62 bobs comfortably at the company’s mid-size category of their famous Flybridge range, a design that casts a benevolent appearance in comparison to the somewhat aggressive, generously proportioned silhouettes on offer elsewhere.
The focus here is on a quiet luxury rather than opulence: you won’t find Swarovski bling or fur trims aboard a Princess (unless demanded by the buyer, perhaps). According to its head of design, Sarah Verey, the challenge with yacht interiors these days is meeting an ever-increasing demand for a minutely personalised experience amongst a sea of rapidly shifting trends. Nowadays, many Princess customers use their yacht to work on while spending time with family as a sort of itinerant holiday home.
In order to create that homely floating environment, there’s a muted palette of hand-stitched Fendi materials (Princess is owned by LVMH) and a comfortable layout of seating throughout (a dining area, a sunpad aft and a circular forward seating area that can be converted into an additional sunpad). Large glazed windows help enhance an ‘inside/outside’ experience by cutting out much of the external noise, which would certainly be considerate at full throttle should the buyer opt for the Caterpillar 12.9 1000 engine, with a top speed of around 30 knots.
The Princess 62 saloon
Also revealed on the quay alongside the 62, to much anticipation, was Bentley’s limited-edition Continental GT Convertible Galene Edition, designed by Mulliner and directly inspired by the Plymouth-based Princess Yachts. Both brands place a passionate onus on British craftsmanship and a devilish attention to detail with material, stitching and user experience.
What first grabs the eye is the bright, yacht-like white exterior featuring a ‘sequined blue’ stripe. Rather than going for the obvious ropes and Breton seats, literal nautical references can be found in the pinstriped walnut veneer – reminiscent of decking – on the central console and lining the boot. As an extremely bespoke touch, Spanish artist Jaume Vilardell’s watercolour illustration, featuring a Flybridge, is featured on the interior fascia panels.
A Bentley yacht may not be on the cards any time soon, but the partnership has proved a success thus far: there were originally going to be 20 of the GT convertibles made but demand has been so high that there will now be 30. If the new luxury seafaring trend is to accessorise one’s yacht with its matching car, keeping a vehicle in every port is going to get expensive.