ALL PHOTOS: Kristina Strobel and Superyacht Media
A family man builds a family yacht—at an American shipyard that is itself a family operation. That’s the main story behind the 164-foot (50-meter) Arianna, delivered by Delta Marine this summer. Equally noteworthy, together these families have ensured that Arianna is the most voluminous all-fiberglass megayacht of her size and design.
“What inspired me to build Arianna was the birth of my daughter in March of 2009,” the owner says, adding that “Arianna” is a combination of her name and that of his wife. “What I wanted was to share the experience of exploring the world on the sea with my daughter and have her grow up knowing the ocean. I also wanted her and my wife to feel at home no matter how many miles away from home we were or for how long.” The owner communicated this idea of a home at sea to Delta Marine that same year.
Having researched several shipyards with his project managers from SG Private Wealth Advisors, a California-based family office, the owner selected Delta Marine based on its experience and engineering skills. He adds that it simply made sense to work with a family operation. The Jones family established Delta Marine in the 1960s, and brothers Jack and Ivor Jones run it today. “When I met with Jack Jones and expressed my vision of Arianna, I could tell that he understood the importance of creating the feeling of home for my family right away,” the owner says.
While Arianna employs Delta’s 164-foot full-displacement hull form (half-load draft is 9’7″, or 2.95 meters), the overall volume is far greater than usual. Typically a megayacht of this LOA and hull type maxes out at 500 tons, due to regulatory considerations. By contrast, the Delta Design Group, Delta Marine’s in-house naval-architecture and interior-design division, pushed Arianna’s internal volume to 822 tons. (On an important side note, don’t misread “internal volume” to mean displacement. The volume figure is given as the ITC Gross Tonnage, with ITC standing for International Tonnage Convention. It’s a worldwide standard for converting a vessel’s internal volume from cubic meters to tons.)
The extra volume translates into an extraordinary living experience for the owner’s party of 12 onboard Arianna: about 7,500 square feet (697 square meters) of usable space from the saloon (above) to the lower and upper decks. Its heightened by a 34-foot (10.4-meter) beam and a comfortably casual, beach-house-type atmosphere made a bit more sophisticated by Balinese and Polynesian design accents. There’s bamboo detailing on overheads and chairs; woven leather covering handrails; intricately carved and inlaid woods like Macassar ebony, wenge, and koa; skylights and blown glass detailed as tropical flowers (as seen in the dining area, below); and more.
The extraordinary living experience even extends to the crew. Their mess is just forward of the galley—on the main deck, “not pushed off to some corner of the lower deck,” the owner says. Having chartered megayachts previously, he doesn’t like the literal and virtual separation between the crew and the people they often get to know well. “I wanted the crew to feel like they were part of the family and experience,” he explains. The crew are also welcome to use the gym, accompanied by a sauna, also on the main deck. Both are forward where the owner’s suite typically is aboard megayachts.
Speaking of the owner’s suite aboard Arianna, it’s fully aft on the bridge deck, and rather than be a palatial personal area, it’s arranged in keeping with the emphasis on family. Sliding doors lead from the bedroom to an enclosed observation area, with sliding windows and other panels that can be removed. Enclosing it, plus closing off the spiral stairs leading from the main deck, certainly makes it safer for his daughter. Enclosing it also lets the owner entertain other family or friends in intimacy and privacy, especially when the megayacht might be tied stern-to. As for the rest of the owner’s suite, it includes a dedicated sitting room/lounge and an additional stateroom, ideal for kids. That extra cabin could alternately serve a personal assistant, and might just do so when Arianna is booked by charter guests.
Charter guests can book Arianna, which has a reported 5,000-mile range at 13 knots under Caterpillar power, directly through SG Private Wealth Advisors (see related story: SG Private Wealth Advisors Creates Yacht Advisory). Charter became an attractive option in the owner’s mind after the build had already started. “I want to share the experience of Arianna with other people,” he explains.