A number of builders, including some of Riva’s sister companies in the Ferretti Group, are vying for clients interested in the 80- to 120-foot range. That meant Riva had its work cut out when it decided to create the 92-foot Duchessa. It also needed to balance the family look and feel its yachts always have with offerings buyers couldn’t get elsewhere.
Riva has achieved the latter in a few ways with the 92 Duchessa that debuted at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show last month. First is the hull color. Termed Roman bronze, it’s among a handful of exterior tones that the builder extends to its buyers. The owner of this particular yacht also requested that the color continue up to the flying bridge, for further personalization. Yet another personal touch: varnished caprails, something often not offered unless you step up to a far larger yacht at some semi-custom yards.
Two of the most notable offerings that set the 92 Duchessa apart, however, involve the crew, at least partly. Riva puts a neat twist on the concept of a raised pilothouse by elevating the helm a step or two above the rest of the main deck. Forward of the dining area, it’s readily accessible from the three crew staterooms below decks yet not completely separate from the main-deck action. A long leather seat flips down to form a bolster at the wheel (also wrapped in leather), and two settees can accommodate other crew or guests. Side-deck doors let the crew quickly access fenders and lines. Raising the helm gives it better visibility, but it also creates a utility room beneath, where extra storage or appliances can be installed.
The other interesting feature is a flying bridge, a first for Riva. The fixed hardtop has a sliding center section, directly over a dining/relaxing spot. The Duchessa at the boat show had a Jacuzzi just aft of the dining table, but Riva can instead install a bar here. Even with a tender and crane stowed fully aft, the flying bridge feels comfortable, not crowded. Still on the subject of comfort, I particularly liked how part of the dining table can flip up to permit easier entry and exit from the benchseat accompanying it.
I further liked the addition of a tender garage. After all, even owners of yachts less than 100 feet LOA like to tote a few toys, right? And while it wasn’t aboard the 92-foot Duchessa I saw, Riva can further fit a sunlounge inside the garage when the PWC or RIB is deployed.
Speaking of inside, buyers have a variety of soft goods from which to choose for the interior. While carpeting is standard, the owner of this yacht opted for a more casual feel with painted wenge soles. It strikes a nice contrast against the tone of the black walnut paneling, further complemented by white leather bulkhead embellishments, furnishings, and blinds. (Yes, leather blinds… this is an Italian yacht, after all.) The tones and textures flow from the main deck down to the lower deck, where two twin-bed guest staterooms, a VIP, and the full-beam master lie.
Even some of the standard features are notable, particularly the use of ARG stabilizers. Proprietary to the Ferretti Group, the stabilizers have been proven to reduce roll by 50 percent when the yacht is at anchor or moving slowly (up to 10 knots).
The one arrangement that might not be so popular with American buyers, however, is that of the galley. It’s forward and down two steps from the helm, along the starboard side, so it’s situated fully in the crew area, not in the social area. It’s also decidedly a working galley, not a hang-out spot. Cruisers who tend to congregate in the onboard cooking area like they do in their home kitchens will be disappointed. On the flip side, those who use their yachts more for corporate or formal entertaining probably won’t mind.
Here’s more of the Riva 92-foot Duchessa, with a €7.2-million ($10.1-million) base price.