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Maritimo 2022Mar - S75 LEADERBOARD

Announcing - Art Now.

by John Curnow, Global Editor, Powerboat.World 14 Oct 2021 00:00 PDT

When you're special. When you're a game changer. When you define a real movement, you get named. And the better you are, the more the name resonates. It's also then applied far more as an adjective, and much less of the noun it was created as. Bauhaus, Rococo, Art Nouveaux, Renaissance, and Impressionism instantly tell you about the flourishes, or lack thereof, the curvature, or precision geometry, and perhaps the total abandonment of known form.

They influence the structure and styles of music, design of buildings, and of course the haute couture. Even the brush stroke style or other textures and treatments, as pertains to the way they hold, play or dance with light become critical: The route essence of the deal itself.

One of these is arguably the most well known, and is definitely the one that gets sprayed about most liberally. It is Art Deco. Instantly it says distinguished; stylish; elegant; playful; born of abandon and future focus, all the while kau tauing to complete hedonism stemming from the liberté found after the Great War.

Now it's always one thing that sparks the creative; sets the keyboard a tapping, if you will. Honestly, I cannot tell you if it was seeing 'yacht' and 'Lalique' in the same sentence, or that proud stem (of which I am a huge fan), that screams both majestic liner from another era, and early 1900s Capital Ship, all at the same time... Put an embossed crest right there at the top of the prow, perhaps accentuated by lashings of gold leaf, and you've got me.

Hang on a minute. Pause right there, think back for a second, and voila, a certain René Lalique had a huge hand in the interior décor of the floating monument to Art Deco, the utterly splendiferous, SS Normandie. Now we're talking, and alas the massive doors to the grand ballroom have been flung open wide quite exuberantly to the whole raison d'etre for the Yacht by Lalique.

Here is a vessel so beautifully conceived, and exquisitely designed, that it too is going to create a name for itself. Yes it pays homage to Art Deco, but its feet are firmly planted in the future. A place where responsibility to the very planet we live on is paramount, and irrefutable. A discipline where design and technology must solve hitherto unbreakable codes relating to ecology, comfort, and science.

So welcome to Art Now, and her muse, the Yacht by Lalique®.

Homage

Naturally, she has a very glass oriented theme going on, and there is definitely a bit of etched and polished surface, or the appearance thereof, to work against both form and design, the tactile and the visual. It's kind of like part Château, part gallery, part über-swanky hotel from say the 8th Arrondissement, a spa par excellence, mansion at Cap d'Antibes, and definitely your favourite bar on Boulevard Saint-Germain.

Talking with her creators is as much of a treat as any of the locales mentioned above. Simply put, Interior Designer Nicola Borella, and Naval Architect Philippe Renaudeau are very passionate, and proudly French. It is like you are there at any of those places in the previous paragraph, and at the very same time chillaxing around one of the several bars on board the Yacht by Lalique that are so masterfully placed and created. These are places to admire the vessel, the people you are with, the world in which you live, and the joy it all brings.

Didn't someone say future focussed?

Quite so. Quite so. Just got a bit distracted, you know. Yes it was sort of hard to get past the gallery, away from the museum, leave the shipyard and so on. Anyone I've shown this vessel to shares that problem too.

But alas we must, for buried in her, just as much as her looks, is the other part of Art Now. Our 70m, all-aluminium and under 3000GT gem is capable of an impressive 19 knots max. With a normal yacht you'd be signing up about now. The Yacht by Lalique is also a one off. No other will look like her. Yes, there may be others to follow, but they will all be original objet d'art.

She will produce her own energy by using a mix of renewable resources; seawater, sun, wind, currents, swells. Naturally, this means solar panels, but I loved how we are also talking about wind turbines being integrated into her structure. Additionally, energy recovery systems for both wave and tide will be implemented. There is also thermal recovery to be deployed into the mix as well.

These will then extract hydrogen from the sea through electrolysis, feeding the fuel cells to provide energy for both house and propulsion duties. We have been following Energy Observer here for some time, and when we found out that they are a partner of this project, well we could see the real world application clearly. She should be autonomous for over 4000nm at a cruise speed of 12-14 knots.

And it is not just when she's done that she'll put a green thumb out. Her whole build will, as and where possible/legal, utilise natural fibres like bamboo, flax, hemp or mineral basalt, and even bio-sourced resins, paint or glues.

Water

Not so much the stuff you're floating on, as all the other... Fresh water harvesting will be a feature of the vessel. Grey will be recycled, in part due to the use environmentally friendly cleaning products. Black will go through successive electrolysis to ensure total degradation before discharge.

Other waste will be sorted and compacted ensuring the maximum recycling effort can be continued, and on board containers will feature bio-sourced and degradable packaging.

So. Pretty and pretty clever... That's Le Yacht by Lalique.

Back to the Future?

When we first heard of Flux Marine we were right back there with Marty and Doc. In a time when pure electric, hybrid, solar and hydrogen all get heaps of air time, and outboards set new benchmarks on what appears to be a daily basis, a scalable electric outboard platform is something well worth putting your hand up to ask the question, or questions. So we did and talked with Flux's CEO Ben Sorkin to get an idea about what the last part of their journey to date has been like.

Awards

"The Newport International Boat Show was the first public unveiling of our all-electric outboard motors, and the response was just amazing. The Newport for New Products Awards were voted on by the industry press, a group that has seen its fair share of innovation throughout the years. So, for them to award our motors not once, but twice, was really amazing."

Sales Pipeline

"We've been developing the Flux Marine outboards for five years now, so officially announcing that we are now taking pre-orders for our 15HP, 40HP and 70HP motors is just a great benchmark for the company, and for our goal of electrifying the recreational boating community. The initial pre-order volume has been overwhelming, and we are excited to start delivering motors to new customers in 2022."

The Growth

"With the early interest we've seen, we are eager to develop our dealer network. While some of the benefits of electric outboards is easy to explain, like never stopping at the fuel dock again and never having to winterize a motor again, we understand that customers want to be hands-on with the motor. They want to experience the sheer quiet that electric propulsion brings to their yachting experience, and they want to feel that the performance is comparable if not better than their traditional combustion outboard. Our dealer network is going to be an important part educating the boating community about the benefits of electrification."

Max Output for Large O/B Craft

"We are currently offering our 15Hp, 40HP and 70HP as standalone motors, which includes the battery system and throttle controls. But, in addition to that, we have developed a dual console boat package that is powered by our 100 HP motor. The beauty of our ground-up design is the efficiency we've built in. Combined with our proprietary battery system, we can scale the motor output to just about any outboard-powered vessel."

Not an oxymoron

Fast displacement. Yes, even today you have to stop and go, nah, doesn't exist. But it does! Yes, digging a hole does not have to mean 12 knots max, and doing 24 knots does not mean you have to be bouncing along the top.

When I first saw Horizon Yacht's headline, 'Keep up with the world's fastest growing yacht series', I did the same. Nah, not true. But then it is well hard to argue with the results of the high volume, ultra-distinctive 75-125-footers designed by Cor D. Rover, and first launched back in 2016. 38 hulls into four continents in what is basically five years, subsequently translates into an average of 7.6 units per annum. That's the kind of business plan that makes the accountants happy, and strong forward orders means there has to be happy clients everywhere too. Bring on the brave new world.

OK. Today you will find that the site has an abundance of material from right across the globe, and if you cannot find something, just try the search button right up the top of the landing page, above our logo.

So as you see, there are stories, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please do savour... We're really enjoying bringing you the best stories from all over the globe. If you want to add to that, then please make contact with us via email.

Remember too, if you want to see what is happening in the other parts of the group, go to the top of the Powerboat.World home page and the drag down menu on the right, select the site you want to see and, voila, it's all there for you.

Finally. Please look after yourselves.

John Curnow
Global Editor, Powerboat.World

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