November 17 marked a significant day for Horizon Yachts: the cutting of the first steel plate for its first-ever steel yacht, the Bandido 148 Explorer. The rendering above, from the drawing board of Espinosa, is what she’ll look like when she’s completed in 2010, and the image below shows the plate being cut at Premier Shipyard, a member of Horizon Group. Horizon additionally held a traditional Chinese ceremony to bring good luck to the construction process.
Given the reception from owners regarding the Premier 130 and Bandido 75, both of which were also designed by Espinosa, good luck may indeed prevail. The Bandido 148 Explorer was conceived to be a long-range megayacht able to take on various conditions, even icy waters. She’s being designed and built to Bureau Veritas ice-class certification as well as compliance with MCA safety regulations. Twin 1,800-hp MTU 12V4000 M60s should permit a 15.6-knot top speed and a cruising speed of 12 knots. Range at cruising speed should be 4,500 nautical miles. Four 22-square-foot TRAC stabilizers are being installed for comfort underway and at anchor.
As for interior comforts, this first Bandido 148 Explorer will accommodate eight guests in four staterooms, all on the lower deck. The master suite, full beam forward on the main deck, will feature a king-size bed, office, and his and her baths. A staircase rises through an atrium from top to bottom, yielding access to the upper-deck exercise room and sauna-each with fold-down balconies-as well as the flying-bridge spa pool for 10.
Having seen Espinosa’s work on a handful of yachts, including the Premier 130, I can safely say that the crew will be treated well, too. Eight crewmembers will be housed in four cabins below decks, each with private heads, while the captain’s cabin will be adjacent to the pilothouse.