A desire to feel closer to sea is emerging as a notable trend among superyacht buyers with major shipyards responding to the requests of discerning clients both in the Middle East and abroad. Recently I ventured to Milan and onwards to Sarnico to meet with the team behind Riva, a brand of the Ferretti Group, which is a world leader in the design, construction and sale of motor yachts and pleasure vessels.
The Marine Business is growing faster than anticipated and the Ferretti Group, the most famous nautical brand in the world had a higher and more than expected returns last year.
Moreover, the Group announced the entry of F Investments S.A., a holding controlled by the Ferrari family, into the share capital of Ferretti International Holding S.p.A. by the acquisition of 13.2% of the share capital.
The FY 2015 performance led to a positive review of the 2016 outlook, thus production value by the end of 2016 is expected to transcend 550 million euros, while the EBITDA is foreseen to reach 50 million euros and the Group to be profitable.
Even our leading local brand, Gulf Craft earlier this year sold AED 80 million (USD 22 million) worth of luxury yachts and leisure boats across its range at the Dubai International Boat Show. The success of the marine industry is hence a worldwide trend now as more and more people gravitate towards the sea for relaxation.
My visit to Sarnico was to delve further into the marine business world as well as to indulge in experiencing the latest products from the Ferretti Group. With a unique portfolio of prestigious and exclusive brands: Ferretti Yachts, Riva, Pershing, Itama, Mochi Craft, CRN and Custom Line, the Group has a wide array of products to meet with the request of clients looking to have a more immersive life on water experience.
My favourite yacht that offers the ultimate open-air experience is the Riva Florida 88 from the Ferretti Group. It resembles a classic speedboat with its sleek lines scaled up into a 26 metre superyacht and features a car-like convertible hard-top.
With the roof in place, the upper deck forms an enclosed lounge and wheelhouse, but when the sun is shining, two hydraulic arms can lift the roof, swing it forward, and stow it on top of the forward cabin.
More recently, I have become a big fan of the new Riva icon, the Rivamare. The magnificent new Riva is a design icon that rewrites the rulebook of timeless elegance.
Meeting with the Riva team in their home ground and at their shipyard in Sarnico was an inspiring experience. The Rivamare is born from the collaboration between Officina Italiana Design, the firm headed by Mauro Micheli and Sergio Beretta, sole designers of the entire Riva fleet, the Ferretti Group Engineering Department and Strategic Product Committee.
Rivamare is 11.88 metres (39 ft) long, with a full beam of 3.5 metres (11.6 ft). With its sinuous and sleek lines, the new model looks seductive and sporty as soon as you set your eyes on it. Proposed by in Ice White gel coat, Rivamare is available in all the colours of the Riva range, including in stunning London Grey, the exclusive metallic version much-loved by Riva owners.
“The conception, design and construction of the new and remarkable Rivamare has been a very exciting experience for us” – comments Mr. Alberto Galassi, Chief Executive Officer of the Ferretti Group. “A masterpiece created in our magnificent, completely renovated boatyard in Sarnico, with a production line exclusively dedicated to the new model, taking forward Carlo Riva’s dream to always build the most beautiful boat.
The new speedboat is the worthy successor of masterworks like Aquariva Super and, before that, Aquarama: it combines the style and charm of these legendary models with the most cutting edge technologies, and offers the greatest care for every detail, together with a level of comfort and spaces never seen before in boats of this size. Rivamare is a leap into the future, forged in the Riva tradition: a motorboat born to be memorable.”
Its side view reveals the striking angles of the keel and bow, ready to fly across the water. Fitted at the sides of the anchor and stainless steel prow is a pair of night-time mooring lights: this is just one of the many details borrowed from previous models and a tribute to the Riva tradition.
The boat’s profile has a distinctive double-curved laminated crystal window at the level of the cabin. The most eye-catching feature on the deck is the windscreen, consisting of 5 double-curved laminated crystal glass sections set in a stainless steel frame, fitted with a rail for the cockpit cover.
A striking feature at the centre of the deck is the casing in chrome plated aluminium alloy supporting the signal horn, yet another stylistic element inherited from the Sarnico boatyard tradition.
Rivamare is equipped with a pair of D6 400 DPH Volvo Penta engines (stern driven propulsion), each generating 400 Mhp at 3,500 rpm, with integrated trim control provided by a stern drive and interceptor management system. In terms of performance, the boat can reach a cruising speed of 31 knots and a maximum speed of 40 knots.
This magnificent object, with its timeless look, completed by a mahogany shaft for hanging the Riva banner, is reminiscent of the fittings found on the speedboats of the past and is bound to become the distinctive hallmark of the new model.
By: Shereen Shabnam
Shereen Shabnam is an yachting aficionado hailing from Fiji, which has over 330 islands, and boating and yachting has been part of her island lifestyle. She is an International journalist writing for multiple luxury lifestyle magazines and curates the VIP Marine Life platform for boating and yachting enthusiasts and the Millionaire Group members.