Beauty and Brains, Too
Custom Yachts’ Crescent Lady — By Diane M. Byrne — June 2002
Beauty and Brains, Too
|If you're impressed with the attention to detail aboard Crescent's latest 120-footer, wait until you see "the cave."|
Not long ago building a spec yacht was one of the best ways to satisfy the feeding frenzy in the megayacht market. After all, many soon-to-be owners chose a yard mostly based on which could finish a yacht within the shortest time, often wanting delivery within a matter of months. The trick, of course, was to create a spec yacht that wasn't like every other one on the market. Designers and yards put their heads together and created split-level staterooms, yachtfishermen intended more for amusement than angling, and other artful solutions.
Even though the boom has passed, some yards are still constructing spec yachts, using them to fill in production slots between contracted projects or to satisfy buyers who've always preferred being able to step onto a turn-key yacht and drive away. However, since the number of buyers is smaller, it's even more important to make each spec yacht a bit different. While some yards do this by making the interiors more voluminous or more eye-catching, none has what British Columbia-based Crescent Custom Yachts gave its spec 120-footer Crescent Lady: "the cave."
No, it's not a dark and cramped locker onboard to which bad crew or guests are banished. Rather, it's the largest so-called crawl space--really, a miniature room, complete with carpeting, bright lighting, and air-conditioning--you'll likely see onboard a yacht this size. It's complete with the black boxes for the 1,800-hp DDC-MTUs' electronic controls, an emergency battery for various electronics, and individual satellite receivers for each television, lined up like electronic soldiers at attention. Most impressive, however, are the fastidious wire runs, each with tiny, exquisitely handwritten labels; you'd be hard-pressed to find a neater job on a yacht of any size. All of this is indicative of the attention to detail Crescent--which does everything from woodwork to stainless steel piping for fire lines in-house--gave to even hidden spaces aboard this yacht, and it puts into perspective the 140,000 man-hours that went into her construction.
Want further proof? Head down to Crescent Lady's engine room. First, however, open the door to the locker immediately to starboard of the engine-room entrance. It's a wet locker that not only has a drain but also an air vent and is completely finished off (no fiberglass splinters here), even overhead. Within the engine room itself, your attention is drawn straight ahead to the three custom backlit sight gauges. Intuitive diagrams for the fuel-transfer system are on panels immediately to port, while fire pumps are to starboard; behind the panels there's both acoustical quilting and more incredibly neat wiring. Other welcome features are the full walkaround access to the DDC-MTUs and the 75-kVA Atlas ShorPower system, which can accept any shore power worldwide, and the GT Generator Seamless Transfer from Atlas, which permits transferring power from genset to genset (two 65-kW Northern Lights), as well as genset to shore power (and vice versa), with no power interruption.
The combination of smart features that are immediately apparent and ones that are more subtle continues in the raised pilothouse. Immediately to port of the wheel, there's the main engines control panel, while the three forward windows--yes, three, not the customary five whose extra mullions disrupt sightlines--are 3⁄4 inch thick. Quite a large chart table lies to port, and a raised captain's desk sits to starboard, the latter being a setup Crescent used on its prior launches Escape and Valkyrie, each also 120-footers. (Of course, the pilothouse also has the traditional observation settee for guests.)
Not by coincidence, when it came time to address the owner's and guests' comfort, Crescent approached the interior-design firm behind Escape and Valkyrie, Designed by Robin M. Rose & Associates. The firm's knack for creating an atmosphere of casual elegance instead of fussy formality translates well onboard Crescent Lady. Rich sappelle mahogany envelops each room and is also fashioned as columns and circular stairwells.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.