Princess 40M – Imperial Princess
The newly-launched Imperial Princess, the 40M flagship of the line showcases the bold steps that Princess Yachts are taking into the superyacht market, and their ability to produce a yacht that inspires confidence at sea and comfort at anchor.
With this magnificent motor yacht British builder Princess Yachts has firmly established itself in the super yacht sector. Princess brings 50 years of experience to this design that has been developed in house and for a semi-production yacht it sets new standards. Princess has always been noted for its timeless designs that owe little to fashion and a lot to common sense.
Semi-production (alternatively, semi-custom) means that while the outside style of the yacht is more or less cast in stone, the interior can be fully customised to meet an owner's requirements. Princess takes this customisation a step further than most production builders by creating a full mock up of the interior in the yard, complete with furniture, so that an owner knows exactly what he is getting when the yacht is finished. At the mock-up stage, it is easy to make alterations and an owner can walk through the design to ensure that it is exactly what he wants.
While the exterior may be fixed in style and dimension, no one is likely to complain about the style. The profile of this triple deck yacht is quite stunning, towering upwards in a dominant fashion yet at the same time having enough of a sporting look to excite the senses. This is what Princess does so well, finding that delicate balance between convention and excitement that will ensure long term enjoyment of this yacht.
Princess does not forget the practical aspects of yacht design either. Many designers get so lost in the requirements of style and fashion that they seem to forget that a yacht has to be operated at sea, possibly in adverse conditions. On this 40-metre flagship, Princess has paid particular attention to the layout of the pilothouse and the demands of mooring the yacht up in marinas. There should be no complaints from the crew who have to operate Imperial Princess.
One of the thoughtful aspects of the design is the way that the crew can move around the yacht without passing through the guest areas. There is a separate stairway from the forward crew quarters up to the pilothouse and separate access to the galley and engine room. While the crew are tucked away down below, the captain has his own cabin located just behind the pilothouse so that he is always on hand when the yacht is at sea and has privacy in harbour.
Starting at main deck level, a unique feature of this design is a foyer inside the aft saloon doors. This has a privacy screen so that guests in the saloon are protected from prying eyes when the yacht is moored stern-to in the marina. Once inside the saloon, there is a tremendous feeling of light and space, mainly thanks to the double doors on each side that open out and down to create fold-out balconies. This allows the normal night time intimate space of the saloon to be enlarged to almost double its size to make the most of fine weather and the cooling breezes. At anchor in a private bay, it would be a fantastic place to enjoy the surroundings.
Forward of this is the formal dining table that seats up to ten guests. The dining area is served, first by a pantry on the port side and then by the large galley. Princess has taken professional advice for the design of the galley facilities so guests can expect 5-star catering on board.
On the starboard side a door leads into a vestibule and it is from here that spiral stairways lead both up and down to access every part of the yacht. This vestibule also forms the access to the master suite forward, one of the best seen on any yacht. This is sumptuous accommodation at its very best and it really is a suite, with an ante-room that can serve as an office or small private lounge, a huge bedroom and an equally spacious bathroom. The bedroom stretches for the full eight-metre beam of the yacht with large windows on each side, there is an intimate seating area under the port windows and walk-in closets on both sides. The bathroom occupies the whole of the forward end and this can be specified as one single bathroom or as two, his-and-hers bathrooms at the request of the owner.
Down below there are options in the stateroom layout with the standard one having four staterooms including the full width VIP or as an option, this aft cabin can be split into two to create an extra cabin if the yacht is to be used for charter work. Each of the cabins has an ensuite bathroom and some of these have full size baths. Luxury is at the forefront of everything down here, and features like thick, soundproofed doors and deep carpeting add to the library-levels of quiet and manor-home comfort.
Two decks up are the bridge deck and the captain’s cabin and there is also a second pantry served by a dumb waiter from the lower pantry. This pantry is designed to serve the sky-lounge aft that can be equipped as a private cinema. The aft doors here open up onto the primary outside dining space on the upper aft deck where a table for 12 awaits. Sun loungers can add to the relaxation quotient of this space, but the main outside play area is up one deck on the flybridge, which is entirely given over to pleasure. Here there is a bar counter serving the al-fresco dining table, a hot tub and of course, more sun loungers. A fixed Bimini covers flybridge, but the whole of the centre section can be opened up and concertinaed back when sun is required.
More external space has been created on the foredeck where there are intimate facing settees and a sun bed. Similarly the lower aft cockpit can be used for casual sitting out and there is a bar counter here as well. On this yacht you are spoilt for choice with a huge diversity of dining and relaxing areas that can suit every mood.
The power for Imperial Princess comes from a pair of MTU diesels from their 4000 series engines. Both optional engines are the 12 cylinder units and with the M73L engines, the total power is close to 6000 horsepower. If the alternative M93L units are chosen then the available power rises to a shade over 7000 horsepower. With the less powerful engines, the speed is just below the 20-knot mark. With the larger units take the speed up to a possible 22 knots depending on the loading of course.
These are useful speeds for such a large yacht and the yacht will operate very happily at lower speeds to give a longer range. This performance is achieved with the minimum of fuss using conventional shaft and propeller drives. The engine room is immaculate and some of the auxiliaries are located in a compartment alongside the aft garage so that they as far as possible from the accommodation and make the minimum of noise when at anchor.
The garage is sized to house the main tender and a jet ski which are handled by internal cranes. When the garage door is folded down this expands the swim platform and this whole area can become a beach deck for water sports.
The control of this beauty is focused on the bridge where the layout has been optimised for easy control. The view ahead is good through the sloping windows and for a view aft the doors on either side give ready access to the outer decks. Here there are wing control stations for docking so there is excellent visibility when coming alongside. The dash has a panoramic array of displays so that all the necessary information for navigation and control is available and the controls have been kept simple and logical.
The composite hull has been designed to perform in rough seas with a fine entry forward and an 11° deadrise at the transom. The seaworthiness should be good and the yacht is fitted with fin stabilisers to smooth the ride both when underway and at anchor. This performance should match the beauty of this fine yacht and the profile, with its reverse sheer looking both powerful and elegant, like a yacht eager to perform and confident that when it does it will give a pedigree performance. Once again Princess Yachts has produced a winner and it is easy to see why this British builder continues to dominate in spite of the competition.
In Hong Kong/South China: www.princessyachtschina.com
In Singapore: www.princessyachtssingapore.com
In Thailand/Indonesia: www.princessyachtssea.com
In Malaysia: www.princessyachtsmalaysia.com
Technical Specifications – Princess 40M Imperial Princess
LOA: 40.16 m
Beam: 8.02 m
Draught (half load): 2.41 m
Displacement (lightship): 230 tonnes
Fuel capacity: 29,345 l
Water capacity: 4000 l
Engines: 2 x 3509 hp MTU 12V 4000 M93L diesels
Optional engines: 2 x 2938 hp MTU 12V 4000 M73L diesels
Propulsion: Shafts and propeller