This weekend is arguably the marketing opportunity of the year for designers and manufacturers of luxury yachts as the rich and famous gather in Monaco for the latest stage of the Formula 1 Grand Prix. A stroll around Monaco’s picturesque inner harbour in the past few days would hardly fail to impress anyone with an interest in the ultra luxury side of our industry – yours to rent for a mere US$100,000 and upwards per night. Closer to home, I couldn’t help but notice this week a stand out of its own sitting quietly in Coal Harbour Marina, namely the Expedition Super Yacht Triton.
Designed and built by Triton Marine, Seattle in 2004
Powered by Twin Caterpillar 3508 engines with twin screws
Accommodation for 12 guests
Cruising speed 16 knots
Triton’s American owners use her for worldwide cruising, deep-sea fishing and reef diving, a typical example being above left where she is anchored off the island of Kemmunett, Malta. She has spent a number of summers in the Mediterranean and even cruised through the Suez canal to Saudi Arabia and the Seychelles to spend the winter. However, she is no stranger to ice as demonstrated by the picture centre above centre during a cruise to Alaska.
Building on years of experience in composite construction, the designers harnessed advanced hull laminate and carbon fibre materials to ensure Triton’s high level of strength and durability. At the same time, minimal vibration was ensured by soft mounting the main engines and all interior spaces are literally “floating”. With four decks of living and entertaining areas, Triton features a full width master stateroom forward on the main deck with sitting room, library and an office with a video editing station intended to allows guests to edit the day's video footage. Additional features include a large walk in refrigerator to cool the wine, a large gym to work off the calories and televisions that flip down from the ceiling to keep an eye on your favourite news and sports channels, not to mention an underwater camera in the bulbous bow and underwater lights at the stern. Just in case you are exhausted after a day’s cruising, an elevator connects guests between the lower deck to the upper flying bridge which also features a hot-tub.
For those who appreciate more active and technical entertainment, Triton is equipped with a sophisticated dive compressor with Nitrox and Tri-Mix capability and a dive platform at the transom for ease of entry and exit from the water. A Simrad state-of-the-art sonar and bottom-mapping system photographs the ocean bottom beneath the yacht and stores the information as 3-D maps ideal for pinpointing wrecks or reefs for diving. On the main deck, two 24-foot tenders can be launched using overhead gantry cranes while the upper deck is equipped with an additional 6000 lb capacity knuckle-boom crane to lift tenders or load heavy items onboard in port, as well as the customary helicopter landing pad.
The pictures above provide a taste of Grand Prix week in Monaco. Smaller cruise ships can enter the inner harbour to nestle in with the super yachts while larger cruise ships anchor off-shore and use their tenders to ferry their guests ashore. First held in 1929, the Monaco Grand Prix is one of the few street races on the Grand Prix circuit and incorporates several elevation changes and tight corners as well as a tunnel, making it one of the most demanding tracks in Formula One. The late Ayrton Senna of Brazil took the chequered flag at Monaco an amazing six times during his 10 years of Formula One racing. He sadly lost his life at the age of 34 on 1 May 1994, as a result of crashing into a concrete barrier while he was leading the San Marino Grand Prix in Italy.
Ship of the Week contributed by Captain Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd.