An SUV of the seas offers long range without going large
Istanbul-based Numarine is a leader in the burgeoning Turkish marine industry. The company, helmed by Ömer Malaz, builds flybridge and hardtop cruisers, and has ventured into the ‘expedition’ yacht market. With a range of off-the-shelf hull designs, all augmented by the involvement of interior and exterior specialists, Numarine can build bespoke boats in a fraction of the time it takes to make a superyacht from scratch. Trends in yacht design take years to reach the high seas, such is the protracted process of creating complex vessels. Expedition yachts, designed for long voyages, are now almost mainstream, with pioneers like Dutch firm Damen leading the way. The next step down the functional ladder is the ‘explorer’ yacht, which can still venture far afield but without the ice-breaking abilities or on-board facilities of the expedition yacht. At just under 26m, the Numarine 26XP is the entry-level model in Numarine’s explorer range and travels 3,000 nautical miles without refuelling. The second 26XP to be launched, it has a unique bulbous bow design. Its key selling point is the expansive deck space, with a flybridge that runs nearly two-thirds the length of the ship, creating a 55 sq m space and an impressive vantage point. This boat is about the synthesis of functio and craft, masterfully compact while retaining the airy, spacious feel of yachts many times its size. The exterior and interior were shaped by Turkish designer Can Yalman, who made the most of the 26XP’s 6.6m beam. A bright and airy saloon occupies the main deck, with a full-width master suite below, along with two VIP cabins and a bunk room. There’s space for a small study, and a separate saloon in the bow, while a crew of three are housed towards the aft. Yalman’s neutral brown and grey palette, concealed lighting and inlaid timber give the feel of a floating boutique hotel. Excursions are handled by a small tender mounted on the sundeck and deployed by a crane. The naval architecture was handled by Italian designer Umberto Tagliavini, who created the basic forms of the XP family. Working with Tagliavini, Yalman has brought a modern visual language to yacht design, exemplified by the vertical bow and the angular, asymmetric forms of the saloon and cabin windows. The proportions amplify the boat’s compact scale and utilitarian nature, making it a sort of SUV for the seas. Self-sufficiency is key for expedition and explorer yachts. Malaz says that the 26XP is equipped with a bank of lithium-ion batteries to avoid the need to have generators running at all times. ‘Our “silent package” allows on-board systems, including air-conditioning, to run for around 12 hours, perfect for enjoying island bays or to sleep peacefully.’ Soundproofing was paramount in the master cabin, which is next to the engine room. Working with industry expert Silent Line, Numarine reduced engine noise to negligible levels. A guest’s life on board a superyacht is hardly taxing, but the 26XP does its best to soothe away the sea miles.