Simon Wittenberg looks at the progress being made by Heesen Yachts on the 57-metre superyacht, Project Akira, which is expected to be ready for delivery in 2024.
Formally unveiled as a concept at the Monaco Yacht Show a couple of years ago, the design and engineering of Project Akira, a 57-metre all-aluminium fast motor yacht, remains on schedule to meet the planned delivery date of 2024.
Construction will formally start after the summer at Heesen’s dutch shipyard in Oss, when skilled welders will lay the keel. Heesen already has 12 yachts in build, ranging from 50 to 80 metres in length, reinforcing their ability to build full-custom and semi-custom motor yachts on speculation to the highest standards.
Project Akira boasts a lightweight aluminium structure, delivering weight control and a highly efficient Fast Displacement Hull Form, a patented design conceived by van Oossanen and engineered by Heesen.
This vessel will be able to reach a staggering top speed of 22 knots despite being powered by relatively small MTU engines. Furthermore, a draft of just 2.3 metres (the vertical distance between the waterline and the bottom of the hull) makes her an ideal platform for exploring the Bahamas’ turquoise shallows.
Frank Laupman of Omega Architects was responsible for styling the exterior of Heesen Yachts’ Project Akira, and the result is a contemporary and elongated profile and innovative design details which will make this superyacht instantly recognisable.
On the inside, the London-headquartered Harrison Eidsgaard studio worked closely with Omega and the engineers at the Heesen shipyard to create a layout and interior design that work seamlessly with the exterior. The décor is made up of a clean but carefully considered aesthetic that invites personalisation whilst showcasing loose and precious artisanal furniture.
Reflective materials have been used throughout the 57-metre vessel to bounce light around the interior, namely high-gloss sycamore, laminated glass and metallic mesh. Stainless steel finishes, dark pewter accents and metalised materials bring a sense of warmth inside without detracting from the beauty of the outdoors.
In terms of the onboard accommodation, six cabins welcome up to twelve guests. The light and spacious 63 square-metre owner’s apartment is located forward on the main deck, while there are four double ensuite cabins laid out down below and a special VIP cabin up on the bridge deck. All decks are served by a glass elevator.
A superyacht wouldn’t be complete without tenders and toys, which are stored on the foredeck, making the beach club in the stern the perfect spot for relaxing by the water, with a fixed swim platform for easy access to the sea.
Arthur Brouwer, Heesen’s CEO, said that the 57-metre aluminium design is ideal for those clients who seek speed, efficiency and volume. CCO Friso Visser added that yacht connoisseurs understand how extraordinary it is to build a high-speed aluminium vessel. He also said that it takes exacting naval architecture, precision engineering, meticulous welding and rigorous weight control, and few shipyards have the skills to achieve this, especially when it’s a speculative build.
It’s so far so good for Project Akira, and we look forward to hearing how Heesen gets on in the coming months.
Heesen Yachts – Project Akira – Where and How?
For more information on Heesen Yachts and Project Akira, visit www.heesenyachts.com/fleet/5700-aluminium-project-akira.
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