CL Yachts, Cheoy Lee’s Reimagination of Luxury Performance

“We realized that if we truly wanted to push innovation, to create entirely new yachting designs and experiences, then it also made sense to start with a clean slate in terms of the name.” So says Jozeph Forakis of Jozeph Forakis Design, of how collaborating with Cheoy Lee Shipyards resulted in CL Yachts. CL Yachts focuses on stylish, swift performers for the new generation of large-yacht buyers. The brand makes its debut at this week’s Miami Yacht Show, with two yachts, too.

To be clear, Cheoy Lee is not abandoning its name, nor its longstanding offerings. Rather, CL Yachts is an independent brand. “We are always looking for new opportunities and exploring new technologies,” explains Martin Lo, the yard’s director. “So, launching CL Yachts was a natural progression.”

CL Yachts megayacht CLA 76

To attract new, younger buyers, Lo and his team undertook some outside-the-box thinking. That’s why they turned to Jozeph Forakis Design. Milan- and New York-based, it’s a multi-disciplinary design studio. Forakis explores different uses of materials and techniques, for instance, plus interactive information technology. He’s further worked with home-furnishings and consumer-electronics companies, but never a yacht builder.

For CL Yachts, Forakis is handling styling and interior design for the largest model so far, the CLA 76. Exhibiting at the Miami Yacht Show, she shows off sharp lines, including a sporty flying bridge. For versatility, the CLA 76 has a retractable sunroof plus a lifting swim platform. Decidedly modern inside, neutral tones keep the focus on the outside environment coming in through the large ports. Large ports sit below decks, too, in the full-beam master. (Beam is 19’8”, or 5.99 meters.) Three more guest staterooms sit below decks, as do crew’s quarters fully aft.

On the technology side, the CLA 76 employs gyro stabilizers and active interceptors, which create lift and therefore improve performance. In addition, she features a CZone monitoring system, which lets you or your crew call up data from various onboard systems and tanks.

CL Yachts megayacht CLA 76

Finally, the carbon fiber-composite CLA 76 offers spirited performance. Michael Peters Yacht Design created her hull, while naval architect Al Horsmon handled naval architecture. The CLA 76 should see a top speed around 29 knots. Draft is a Bahamas-friendly 5’4” (1.63 meters).

CL Yachts plans larger models, too. Still in the design stage, the CLB 88 also bears Forakis’ signature. She complements the CLB 72, already in the water. In fact, the latter will be at this week’s Miami Show as well.

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