The Art of True Custom Megayacht Build: How CRN Does It
One of the core principles of Ancona-based shipyard CRN is that of pure custom superyacht build. This client-oriented philosophy - that a superyacht is a true reflection of an owner’s character - means that no two CRN-built yachts are ever the same. We take a closer look at the philosophy that, while not always the most cost-effective or time-efficient method, has yielded enormous innovation in terms of design, technology and hand-picked quality.
What does ‘custom’ mean to the experts that know it best?
At CRN’s shipyard, ‘true custom’ is part of the yard’s everyday DNA. More than just a requirement, custom is a lifestyle and a truly original approach to living at sea. This is what CRN seeks to emulate with every new build; resulting in a true variety of portfolio. Little else could explain the sporty, unconventional feel of 62m VOICE against the more classic elegance of yachts such as 79.5m MIMTEE.
What is it about CRN that equips the yard to so successfully fulfil owners’ wishes?
Skilled professionals, excellent resources and a deep knowledge of the construction process inside and out are essential to successful shipbuilding, yes. But the team at CRN goes deeper than that.
As Italians, excellent craftsmanship is inherent to CRN’s shipbuilding DNA. Every inch of a CRN custom creation has been meticulously thought through by people with real emotion and dedication to their work. Backed up by an incredibly close relationship between shipyard management and the CRN dedicated yacht project management team, CRN is able to create unique works of art with remarkable precision, quality and performance .
The resource and manpower that goes into creating a CRN custom superyacht is something to behold. An extensive team comprising everything from Project Manager and Project Architect through to Project Engineer and Head of Construction makes up the yacht project management team, whose sole focus over the span of construction is to fulfil an owner’s vision to the most exacting standards.
An excellent case study for CRN’s ability to create ‘true custom’ is the yard’s most recent delivery, 62m VOICE.
Delivered in July 2020, this 62m steel and aluminium masterpiece was designed in collaboration with Nuvolari Lenard design studio. Her owner, described as a determined gentleman with precise ideas and a strong personality, was closely involved in the build process from day one and maintained a constant dialogue with the yard team throughout.
VOICE’s owner’s character is visible in her powerful, fluid external lines. To illustrate the extent of the collaboration, no fewer than 43 meetings between the CRN yacht project management team and owner were held simply to finalise the details of particular lines. The result is an instantly recognisable and utterly unique profile, set apart from anything that has come before her, that would never have been possible without the similarly unique makeup of CRN as a shipyard.
Specific custom features onboard VOICE include an extra large spa pool on the sun deck and social areas located in all areas of the yacht. Over 80 meetings were held to finalise the yacht’s interiors; every detail down to specific lighting in accordance with the music being played was painstakingly perfected.
Great attention was paid to comfort onboard, both for guests and crew. In-depth soundproofing studies were carried out to secure a substantial sound reduction on the partition bulkheads and diving doors of interior areas. 70 tons of insulating material was used to achieve this - about twice as much as is typically used on a vessel of this size.
Top-of-the-line performance was also an important part of the owner’s brief. The shipyard managed to exceed the contracted top speed of 16 knots, hitting 16.5 with a range of 5500 nautical miles.
Possibly one of the most outstanding features of VOICE and one of the most technologically advanced examples of true custom is the yacht’s sustainable agenda.
The first CRN superyacht to gain IMO TIER III certification, guaranteeing a 70% reduction of harmful emissions of nitrogen oxides, VOICE demonstrates how far the CRN team will push to achieve their forward-thinking clients’ aims.
What has been the craziest custom request CRN has ever achieved?
A commitment to making things happen has opened the CRN team up to a world of outlandish owners’ requests. Over the years, these include having a hull lengthened by 2m after general arrangements were defined, to meet the owner’s request to have a dining area in the beach club. Other requests include building a 10m corridor completely covered with video walls, and a refrigerated cellar to accommodate over 600 bottles.
On VOICE, this ceaseless commitment to custom took the form of the yacht’s distinctive colouring. CRN managed to obtain full-custom colours to match one of the owners’ favourite cars, including a smokey quartz hull, silver sand superstructure and jet black details.
The result, a totally unique sheen which changes colours depending on light reflections, was eventually chosen after 35 colour samples were made mixing four different types of metal.
What does the future hold for CRN’s custom approach?
Sustainability, connectivity and automation are the three key factors which will determine the design of CRN’s future custom builds.
Though VOICE serves as an excellent indication for CRN’s sustainable future, the yard is constantly engaged in researching sustainable materials for the building of superyachts. CRN is structured to design and implement alternative propulsion systems, such as hybrids and electric. CRN acknowledges the importance of increasingly investing in renewable energy sources such as solar and hydrodynamic energy for the future of the yachting industry.
CRN’s custom superyachts are fitted with increasingly cutting-edge entertainment systems, as owners seek to connect with friends and family onboard their home-at-sea.
CRN’s drive to automate more effective solutions dates back as early as the first beach club on 60m Blue Eyes in 2009, or floodable garage on 60m J’ade in 2012. This is likely to continue to enhance connectivity to the sea, be it in the form of sea terraces or evolving and increasingly accessible submarines.
"No fewer than 43 meetings between the CRN yacht project management team and owner were held to finalise the details of particular lines."