This series of 40-metre, long-range cruising yachts for the YachtPlus fractionally owned luxury fleet is the latest in a series of nautical commissions that began with the design of the 58-metre motor yacht Izanami in1993 and continued with the sailing yacht Dark Shadow in 2002. In exchange for a share in a specific yacht, YachtPlus owners will acquire year-round access to a fully crewed and serviced fleet in the Mediterranean in summer and the Caribbean in winter. Each yacht can carry twelve guests, with a crew of eight, and has a maximum speed of 17.5 knots. Cruising at a steady 16 knots it will have a range of 950 nautical miles – a voyage, say, from Monte Carlo to Capri. The yachts are being built and fitted out in the yards of Rodriquez Cantieri Navali’s high-tech luxury yacht division near La Spezia in Italy. Like Izanami, the hulls are of aluminium alloy, with composite used for the superstructure. While the yachts have a conventional semi-displacement hull and diesel-electric propulsion systems, their overall form represents a striking departure from precedent. The superstructure is placed far forward to maximise outdoor terrace space, and the interiors are opened up to daylight and views. The owner’s suite is located at the prow, arranged so that it points the course of the yacht, articulating the thrill of living on the water. Fully glazed bulkheads and wide window openings dissolve divisions between inside and outside, and the teak planking of the of the main deck runs through the length of the main saloon, creating a sense of continuity from the decks to the living spaces. The different deck levels are connected by a glass spiral staircase, designed to draw daylight down through the guest accommodation, while reflective wall finishes will maximise the spread of light. At night time, state-of-the-art lighting systems integrated into scene-setting ceilings can change the mood and atmosphere of every space, adding a further dramatic dimension to life at sea.