Interparus in touch! Yachts with a classic design are becoming more and more rare guests in marinas, they are less and less ordered from shipyards and taken on charter. Despite this, demand remains quite high. Grace III is a perfect example of what an updated classic yachting has to offer!
The future owner of Grace III (whose name is not disclosed) knew very well what his yacht should be like, because he spent his whole life under sail. To create the yacht of his dreams, he turned to Hoek Design Naval Architects for help. André Hoek, the founder of the company, talks about meeting with the owner: “[The owner of Grace III] came to our studio in Edam and we started discussing a custom project for a yacht of about 110 feet (34 meters)
He was drawn to J-class boats and the traditional deckhouses of our Truly Classic series. He wanted a boat with a classic look. At the same time, she had to have high running characteristics. She would be mainly intended for family cruising, but would still be able to show decent results in Cup or Bucket class superyacht races.”
After a thorough analysis and negotiations regarding the construction of a new yacht, the owner decided that it would take too much time. Sensing his concern, Hoek suggested that the client consider his 39.3m Truly Classic 128 yacht. Since two yachts of the same series (Atalante and Vijonara) were already in operation, full design documentation was available.
Even better, Dutch aluminum case manufacturer Bloemsma had free time for a new project. With two hulls ready for the first two 128s, Bloemsma could get to work on this project while Hoek worked on the interior and deck for the Grace III. It is obvious that it was chosen between the long-term construction of a yacht from scratch and the creation of a boat according to ready-made patterns.
Complexities of production and SES Yachts
The specificity was, first of all, to make a yacht from different parts. The boom should be Park Avenue to mimic the look of the J-class, with two cockpits and a deckhouse on deck to separate the guest and family lounge from the steering.
The owner would have been happy to build the hull entirely in the Netherlands, but he wanted to get the yacht outfitted in Turkey, at the SES Yachts shipyard. There he ordered his previous yachts. It was a good decision for the owner, who lived in two cities: Istanbul and New York. When the pandemic hit, he was in Turkey and could visit the shipyard every week.
SES Yachts, founded by Sefer Yildirim in 1977, has launched over 80 boats and yachts. These included both motors and sails, but Grace III was her first collaboration with André Hoek.
Anyone familiar with Hoeck's work can easily distinguish his boats. Low deck profile, long overhangs and classic deckhouses - Grace III even on the drawings was distinguished by its corporate style.
Grace III Deck Features
“The owner wanted a large, separate lounge cockpit that could dine on deck for 10-12 people,” explains Hoek. “In addition, he wanted the skipper's cockpit to be located aft of the vessel. As well as deck winches.
The idea was to separate recreation and work areas. Everything needed to steer the yacht was at the stern. And everything else is on the tank and closer to it. Six winches are located in front of the helmsman, and two behind, so the skipper knows if the entire crew is ready for maneuvers. In our case, one steering wheel is enough.”
Also, Hoek did not forget about free winches. Two of them can be used to better control the mainsail. André goes into detail: “A reliable mainsail system on a fractional-rigged yacht is critical when dealing with a boom. For this reason, we have installed the so-called “German system” as a guide for the boom sheet.” The cockpit has all the comforts as well as modern amenities.
The spirit of yachting and convenience
The shape of the felling seemed to have descended from the pages of classic novels. Arched windows, air vents and sea bream, stainless shiny handrails on the deckhouse roof and a lot of varnish - all this conveys the spirit of “that very” yachting.
From the guest cockpit, a door leads to an asymmetrical deck saloon with seating for five, with a raised platform table to port and L-shaped seats to starboard. The furniture is relatively simple in execution, and the fittings shine with silver rather than brass or bronze.
However, the dark mahogany, window surrounds, headlining and ceiling moldings look “classic”. Further, the salon is divided. To port is the galley and dining room, and to starboard is the library/media room. The centerpiece is a delightful steam fireplace. The stand for the fireplace is made of light oak.
From the lower salon you can go through two guest cabins - a double with an extra berth Pullman and a double. The third cabin with upper and lower berths is opposite the galley.
For greater privacy, the owner's cabin is located at the stern of the boat. At the bottom of the stairs from the salon on the starboard side is a bathroom. A full shower is located on the port side.
While Hoek and his team created the layout and finishing details, the owner collaborated with a longtime friend and designer from London and Turkey named Yael Modiano. His task was to create the design of the entire interior decoration of the yacht.
Modiano talks about his experience: “The owner's family asked me to create a decor that would make me feel at home myself! Usually people come from their ideas about design, but here I was given absolute creative freedom. Of course, there were restrictions in style. But I tried to bring the maximum of the author's vision. Brown tones and pastel fabrics were chosen to contrast with the dark mahogany.
Lots of Colefax and Fowler and GP&J Baker fabrics here. A soft palette of taupe, grey, grey, and white was predominantly used, with the exception of the master suite, which is decorated in blue and white. Modiano has never done yacht interiors before, but she has studied the look of the Hoek Truly Classic series. "I would suggest less gloss in the interior, but that's a hallmark of Hoek."
Grace III and commerce
Grace III is the first shipyard to fully comply with MCA requirements. All of SES' subcontractors are Turkish companies, which was a good thing as the Turkish government decided not to shut down production during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We just kept working, organizing small groups of people on board. This helped us compensate for delays in the supply of equipment and materials from Europe and the United States,” says Hoek. He is proud that the Grace III was delivered just three months late despite the difficulties the technicians had in getting it to the shipyard for commissioning.
The biggest challenge, according to the team, was installing all the hardware. “The boat’s gross tonnage of 130 tons is pretty low for a 40m yacht. We had to seriously redesign the entire engine room.”
After showing the Grace III at the Monaco Yacht Show last September, SES Yachts has signed a contract for another project of the same type. “We wanted a classic sailing yacht with a 1930s look. Of course, we should not forget about the convenience of modern boats,” says the owner of Grace III. “The result is a yacht that is a pleasure to drive. Perfect balance and excellent driving performance in all conditions.
The Grace III is a pleasure to drive, and I can confirm that its driving behavior exceeds my expectations. Her movement in rough seas is very pleasant and smooth, ensuring the safety and comfort of all crew members on board. And besides all this, she looks amazing!”.
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