Created for a detail-driven owner, the new Sanlorenzo SL96 suggests that you can have it all, if you know how to ask.
The owner of Peacekeeper calls himself an early adopter of marine technology. “I have been that sort of guy all my boating life,” he says, as he takes us through his latest yacht, Hull No. 1 of the Sanlorenzo SL96. “Boats are a very personal thing,” he adds. “One of the ways you can make them even more personal is to put things on them that interest you and you enjoy.”
A successful software developer, the owner has had salt water running through his veins most of his life. He purchased his first boat, a Formula 21, when he was just 22. From there his fleet began to creep up in size. A 36-foot Apache followed the Formula, and then came the Azimuts, including a 46 and 55.
However, he became hooked on the customization process with the yacht he owned before buying the SL96, Skyfall—the second Lazzara 76 Breeze built. “She was the first boat I could customize during the build. I had them replace the triple 600-horsepower Cummins diesels driving triple computer-controlled Zeus pods, with twin 1,200-horsepower MANs each driving ZF’s 4000 Pods. These were very cutting edge at the time.”
It is this love of customization that led him to the Sanlorenzo shipyard in Ameglia, Italy, to build Peacekeeper. But he didn’t want a complete custom yacht. He was looking instead for a model that was close to his needs, but built by a yard that would offer the flexibility to incorporate specific requests developed from years of cruising. And he found a willing partner in Sanlorenzo Americas in Ft. Lauderdale. The folks there didn’t mind moving rooms around, and they didn’t mind altering the positions of bulkheads and even raising the heights of overheads either.
He was satisfied with the top speed of 28 knots from the optional 2,200-horsepower MTU 16V 2000 M84s. What concerned him more was the placement of the gym and whether or not his dog, Mishka, a Samoyed bred for the Siberian tundra, would be cool enough with the standard air-conditioning layout. He also wanted to ensure his family would be comfortable for extended periods onboard.
Thus, Peacekeeper began to evolve from the standard Sanlorenzo offering. Typically a standard SL96 accommodates 10 guests in five staterooms including a master suite, a VIP stateroom, and a pair of twin-berth guest cabins on the lower deck. Peacekeeper has a four- instead of a five-cabin layout. In the standard SL96, the master suite is situated amidships on the lower deck, while this owner requested the builder put the space forward on the main deck.
The VIP cabin in the standard layout is positioned forward, and the guest cabins are in between the master and the VIP. In Peacekeeper, because of the desire to have a gym on the lower deck, only three cabins are devoted strictly to accommodation. The standard main-deck layout above features a dining room separated from the saloon by double doors, while the galley is positioned forward of the dining room. Also on Peacekeeper, there is no separate dining area, but the console table behind the couch in the saloon quadruples in size to become a dining table on occasions when bad weather forces guests to eat inside.
Typically this owner stays aboard from Memorial Day through mid-August. During this period, the boat becomes his home and office. “We call ourselves destination boaters,” he says. “We like to spend time in each destination and experience life like a local. We get on the boat when school is out for the summer and don’t get off until school starts. We invite friends and family to join us.”
It is a way of life that has seen him spending quality time onboard in destinations such as New England, the Virgin Islands, and the Dominican Republic. He adds, “But when you are on a boat for that length of time you learn that no matter the size, things can get a little crowded if you do not bring some order into what might otherwise be chaos. I like to see a place for everything and everything in its place.”
We are standing in the foyer of the saloon having just entered from the aft deck. On either side are eye-catching murals by the Italian artist Alex Turco. One, on the starboard side cunningly conceals lockers. “So what is the first thing you do when you come inside off the deck and the bright sunlight?” he asks.
“Reach for a beer?” we suggest hopefully.
“Well yes, but before that, you take off your sunglasses right? Well, imagine that there are eight guests onboard. That’s eight pairs of sunglasses sliding around, getting lost or sat on, so where do you put them?” By this point it is obvious that we’re not going to see a beer chiller. He then pulls out a drawer with eight box-like receptacles. “They go in here,” he says, while pointing to the drawer. “And if they need cleaning, look, here is the cleaner liquid and special eyeglass cloth. What about your iPad or small tablet? Everyone has got one and they can lead to a messy boat if they are left around, so here,” another drawer is opened, “This is where they go and look, the charging cable is right there too so you charge the tablet and keep the saloon tidy at the same time. Same with deck shoes,” he says pulling out yet another drawer.
He is right, the saloon looks all the better for it. You can really appreciate the décor and the hard work of Sanlorenzo Americas’ choice of interior designer, Marty Lowe. It is one big lounge and is very crisp and clean although, in truth, the room is also a geek’s repository. An electronic touchscreen Lenovo games table replaces the obligatory coffee table around which two sofas are set in an L-shape. They are in exactly the right spot to watch the TV, which, in true tradition of the early adopter, is a 55-inch Samsung curved screen that boasts the very latest in OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) technology. This gizmo permits two people looking at the same screen to watch different programs. The model fitted aboard Peacekeeper uses special glasses, similar to those required for 3D TVs, which separate the two shows from each other. The glasses have built-in earbuds attached for the individual audio channels. It’s no wonder many call the OLED TV a marriage saver!
But let’s say some exercise is required after a movie. Don’t forget that fully functional gym on the lower deck with all the gear and weights. To get the right equipment to function correctly both the deck had to be dropped and the overhead raised, a scenario that does the best job of illustrating the willingness of the Italian builder to create a craft that an owner specifies.
Because gyms are used primarily in the morning this one is thoughtfully fitted with a concealed drop-down ironing press which converts the room nicely for the crew to have extra space to keep the boat neat and tidy.
An early adopter? The fact that this owner’s chosen the forward part of the main deck for the master and en suite head is a bit unusual. In a more conventional layout this space would be divided between the galley and dining area. But then again in a more conventional layout the shower might not have a seat that is in fact the housing for the computer printer in the adjacent office.
Guests and the owner’s child can call the lower deck their own. It’s a lovely area, with three guest suites, two of which are doubles and the third has a twin berth with a pull-down Pullman.
Leaving the owner on his personally styled new Sanlorenzo, I couldn’t help but notice a look of contentment settle over his face. Here he was on a yacht, which incorporated every detail he wanted, and needed, right down to altered air conditioning for Mishka. What more could he ask for?
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Generator: 2/55-kW , Warranty: One year on hull and structure
Test Boat Specifications
- Test Engine: 2/2,200-hp MTU 16V 2000 M84s
- Transmission/Ratio: ZF 3060V, 2.75:1 gear ratio
- Props: 5-bladed Nibral S class
This article originally appeared in the April 2015 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.