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Riviera's World Premiere 68 Sports Motor Yacht a new class of travel

by Riviera Australia on 4 Aug 2017
Riviera 68 Sports Motor Yacht at speed during sea trials off Queensland's Gold Coast. Riviera Australia

Riviera, Australia's most awarded luxury motor yacht builder, has unveiled the first model of its highly anticipated new Sports Motor Yacht collection at the 2017 Sydney International Boat Show.

The Riviera Sports Motor Yacht collection has been designed to offer the exhilaration of sports performance with the luxurious comforts for which Riviera is internationally recognised.

Superior offshore and extended cruising capabilities are the hallmarks of this extraordinary design.

Initial sea trials proved the motor yacht's whisper-quiet performance and super-smooth running at speed.

The collection includes the 68 and 72 models, both available with Classic or Grand Presidential accommodation suite options offering three or four staterooms and three bathrooms.

During a period of more than two years of development, Riviera’s in-house design team conducted extensive consultations with highly experienced Riviera owners from around the world to create a motor yacht of great beauty and purpose.

'All of the owners we spoke with were seeking a new style of motor yacht,' said Riviera owner and Chairman Rodney Longhurst.

'Their dream was a blue-water yacht that combines speed and sport fishing and other water sports capabilities with the confidence of high bulwark side decks, a foredeck entertainment centre, fully enclosed flybridge with internal stairs, a covered mezzanine dining area and ultra-luxurious interiors. This new Sports Motor Yacht comprehensively delivers on their brief.'

In designing the hull, Riviera partnered with the esteemed naval architects Mulder Design in the Netherlands who have the distinction of designing three of the fastest super yachts in the world.

Hull designs were then tank tested at the Wolfson Institute Unit for Marine Technology and Industrial Dynamics at the University of Southampton in England. The result is a new Riviera hull that is supremely capable at varying speeds and in a wide range of offshore conditions of delivering a smooth, soft and dry ride.

Editor's Note: Below is our on-water review of this magnificent vessel.

Expansive and versatile cockpit

Stepping forward through either starboard or port transom gate from the large boarding platform, the 12.38 square metre (133.3 sq ft) cockpit of the 68 Sports Motor Yacht offers everything a sports fisher and water sports enthusiast could wish for as well as plenty of space for relaxing and entertaining and considerable storage solutions. The cockpit floor includes four large deck hatches. The outer two provide storage or fish bins while the inner two provide access to the aft lazarette and to the steering system.

Starboard and port fairleads in the aft quarter coaming allow mooring lines to be fed to electric capstan winches for easy dockside manoeuvring when current or wind conditions dictate.

A large barbecue unit is set forward of the cockpit in cabinetry located below the elevated mezzanine. This unit includes twin barbecue grills on the starboard side, a central sink with mixer tap and an insulated moulded icebox to port. The sink unit is hinged to provide access to the engine room.

The elevated alfresco mezzanine forward of the cockpit includes a large under-cover dining area and is connected with the central U-shape gourmet galley through a stainless steel framed door and large awning window as one large lifestyle space, positioning the chef right at the heart of a very social environment. A bar with two swivel stools under is set below the awning window, creating additional informal seating in the mezzanine. This unit also contains an icemaker. A fold-down TV is positioned in the headliner on the port side of the mezzanine overhang.

A door on the port side of the mezzanine leads to a staircase down to the day head and shower. Adjacent to the day head is a utility room or optional crew cabin with direct access to the engine room.

Relaxing at sunset on the foredeck lounge

Moving forward along side decks protected by high bulwarks, the expansive foredeck can include a 550kg hydraulic davit and custom Williams tender.

The foredeck also includes a large sunken entertaining area with seating for eight. Clever design has allowed for the entertaining and tender options to be combined so that the tender sits atop. Simply lift the tender away, ready to explore a secluded bay or beach, and the entertaining area is available. The area can be covered with a fold-away bimimi - an ideal space at anchor for sun worshipper or to relax and savour a drink after a day's cruising. Massive storage lockers can contain all cushions and back rests for this area, protected from the elements.

Forward, the 80kg Ultra anchor sits below a stainless steel self-loading bow roller on the bowsprit and is connected via swivel to 100 metres of 13mm galvanised chain stored in an anchor locker on the starboard side of the foredeck. The vertical anchor windlass is controlled through a hand-held remote or remote control from the flybridge.

A galley to delight a discerning chef

The U-shaped galley of the Riviera 68 Sports Motor Yacht is designed and built to cater for the chef's every requirement. From the superbly varnished walnut timber cabinetry and timber-finish flooring that covers high-traffic zones to premium appliances including a four-burner induction cooktop with pot-keepers, rangehood, a large microwave convection oven and a dishwasher, this is a space that will inspire all chefs. The galley also offers exceptional refrigeration capability with four drawer refrigerators and two freezers.

Forward of the galley on the starboard side is a substantial liquor cabinet with recessed holders for bottles and glasses.

A saloon that invites conversation

The plushly carpeted saloon features a large lounge to port and a leather dinette that seats up to eight people to starboard. There is even a magazine rack built into the arm rest of the port side lounge.

The environment of this relaxing space is enhanced by sound-dampening fabric and leatherette panelling.

A massive 55-inch TV forward of the galley rises at the touch of a button and is easily viewable from both lounge and dinette. The saloon sound system is discretely hidden in a cabinet beside the TV.

A watertight pantograph door on the port side leads to the side deck, allowing quick and easy access to mooring lines and the foredeck.

An internal timber staircase provides direct access to the flybridge.

The command centre

Command and control of this magnificent motor yacht resides in a spacious and luxurious fully enclosed flybridge.

The state-of-the-art helm station features hand-stitched leather surrounds, comprehensive engine and thruster controls, including the Twin Disc electronic joystick system (EJS), and up to four 22-inch navigation screens. Helm seating comprises a plush central Norsap helm seat and port side companion seat. Both seats are fully adjustable; the helm seat offers electric adjustment.

Guests can relax on lounges across the entire starboard side facing the helm, skipper and an entertainment unit.

A special feature of this space is a fold-out double bed secreted under the aft lounge, offering additional accommodation.

A stainless steel framed glass door and awning window connect the flybridge with a large aft deck and alfresco dining area with an L-shape seating area as well as space for two stand-alone dining chairs. A wet bar on the port side includes a solid surface benchtop, stainless steel underslung sink with mixer tap, an icemaker, drawer fridge and drawers for glass storage. A small water-tight battery box inside the wet bar unit provides emergency power for the electronic navigation and control systems in the flybridge.

Engine controls, a stainless steel wheel and EJS joystick are built into the aft end of the wet bar. A second joystick is mounted on the starboard side.

An optional GRP unit integrated into the aft flybridge rail contains life rafts and emergency flares.

Space, light and luxury in four staterooms

The accommodation deck offers two stateroom options; the four-cabin Classic or the three-cabin Presidential with full-beam master stateroom.

The World Premiere yacht has been built to include the Classic accommodation layout with a massive midships master stateroom with ensuite bathroom along the starboard side.

The stateroom features a king-size bed, a feature headboard and bedside tables with leather in-lays and ample storage underneath.

There are his/hers cedar-lined hanging wardrobes on either side of the stateroom.

Entertainment is provided through a 40-inch TV and home theatre system with five surround sound speakers.

Mood lighting complements this suite.

Opening portholes and fixed hull windows draw in natural light and fresh air.

The Presidential suite features a full-beam master stateroom with ensuite in the starboard fore quarter. A private sitting area on the starboard side can serve as an informal workstation, make-up bureau or breakfast retreat.

The stylish VIP guest stateroom forward includes a walk-around queen-size bed with storage beneath and wardrobe space either side, outboard cupboards with positive locking hardware, a premium entertainment system and a private ensuite. Sweeping hull windows are an eye-catching feature and will draw in natural light and an overhead hatch enables fresh air as well as complete privacy when the Oceanair screen is slid across.

The port cabin aft of the guest stateroom features twin single beds which can, at the touch of a button, form a double as the inboard bed slides across. A bedside table with leather in-lays is a feature of both configurations and there is a cedar-lined hanging wardrobe and even more storage outboard and under the beds.

The Classic layout includes an additional fourth guest cabin with full-sized pullman-style beds, cedar-lined hanging wardrobe and bedside table.

The two cabins share a bathroom located on the port side, forward of the twin cabin.

Technology that delivers fingertip control

The Riviera Sports Motor Yachts include next generation CZone digital switching which can interface with an iPad. The introduction of “push” technology allows control of a range of features from an iPhone too – such as the full spectrum feature lighting, the saloon and master stateroom entertainment systems and also the optional cameras – and you can easily charge these smart devices as every internal electrical outlet also features a USB charging point.

The spacious engine room includes acoustic and thermal insulation, full height head room and eye-height engine systems monitors and remote controls.

Power for the spectacular World Premiere motor yacht comes from twin MAN V12 1550 turbo diesel engines, delivering 1,550 hp (1,140 kW) each through Twin Disc remote-mounted Quickshift gearboxes that integrate with the Express Joystick System. V-drives take power to Aquamet 22 Sea Torque oil-filled shafts and Veem five-axis CNC-cut propellers utilising Interceptor technology.

Two other power options are offered - twin MAN V12 1800 or 1900 engines delivering 1,800 or 1,900 hp (1,324 or 1,397 kW ).

The engine room is also equipped with two Onan generators, a main 27.5kW/50Hz and auxiliary 13.5kW/50Hz.

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