The latest addition to the Pearl fleet is the beneficiary of naval architect Bill Dixon and interior designer Kelly Hoppen.
There are small boatyards, and then there are boutique boatbuilders. Pearl Yachts would probably prefer the latter description, with its range of high-end motoryachts designed by British naval architect Bill Dixon, and styled by the London interiors specialist Kelly Hoppen.
Unit volume is low, quality is high, and in recent years the company, which was founded in 1998, has succeeded in carving out a niche for itself among the bigger U.K. yards. “We’ll do ten boats this year,” said Founder and Managing Director Iain Smallridge on Pearl’s Dusseldorf show stand. “We typically do two to three 80s per year, and two 95s. And we’ve sold four of these so far,” he adds, pointing up at the brand new 62.
As with all other Pearl models, the molding, bulkheads and engineering of the new 62 are done at a shipyard in Xiamen, on the coast of China opposite Taiwan. After initial sea trials, the boats are shipped to the U.K. for final fitting out. “We’ve been working with this yard for about eight years now,” Smallridge confirms. Pearl, he estimates, accounts for around three quarters of its output. Nordhavns and Marlows, he tells me, are constructed in neighboring facilities. All new Pearl yachts come with a comprehensive five-year warranty.
As a design, the 62 packs in a lot. The flybridge extends aft over the cockpit, with separate seating and sunbathing zones, while the optional hardtop is huge. Down on the foredeck, a wide sofa and expansive sunpad are themselves sheltered beneath a full-size awning rigged on four carbon-fiber poles. The layout of the main deck is particularly successful, with its discrete salon seating area forward, and the aft galley with its breakfast table communicating seamlessly with the cockpit. The salon windows are fashionably enormous, while the long, raked, two-piece windshield combines with the large glass panels over the helm to spectacular affect.
Down below, with the engines and their IPS drives mounted well aft, there is plenty of hull volume for guest accommodation. The VIP stateroom forward and the matching pair of twin-berth cabins—the port one with en suite access to the third head—are comfortable enough, but the real beneficiary is the midships master suite, whose private companionway down from the salon is not something you generally expect to find on yachts this size. The head, too, is positively luxurious, with an excellent-sized shower stall.
The 62’s standard engines are a pair of Volvo Penta 725-hp IPS 950s, but the Düsseldorf show boat, the first off the line, was fitted with the 900-hp IPS 1200s. These are considerably larger than the standard units—12.8 liters compared with 10.8—and they also add $136,000, but there were no obvious ill effects in the well-executed engine room. Access all around both the engines and the drives is not at all bad, and there is even 6-foot standing headroom by the hatch.
Layout options are limited to a choice between a crew cabin or a garage in the stern for a personal watercraft, although Kelly Hoppen’s interior design comes in four individual themes. All emphasize muted tones and natural veneers, with contrasting black accents above and below, and the sheen of marble. Fabrics are selected from Hoppen’s own interiors collection.
Pearl 62 Specifications:
Displ.: 70,547 lbs.
Fuel: 726 gal.
Water: 211 gal.
Standard power: 2/725-hp Volvo Penta IPS950s
Cruise speed: 26 knots
Top speed: 32 knots
Price: $1.8 million