When you own a classic yacht and both want and need modifications, it’s important to strike a balance between preservation and transformation. The owners of the 35-year-old superyacht Amara prioritized that balance, as did the craftspeople at Feadship’s Makkum yard, during a recently completed refit.
The owners acquired the 188-foot (57.3-meter) yacht, the ex-Cacique, last year. (See “More About the Superyacht Amara” below, too.) They cruised in Alaska before compiling their checklist. Amara was due for her Lloyd’s survey as well, so the timing worked out.
One major upgrade needed: the helideck. While the original size and shape were fine (above), it couldn’t handle twin-engine craft. Therefore, Feadship’s aluminum shop crafted a new one based on the engineering of Feadship Refit & Services staff. Additionally, the helideck now bears Amara’s logo (below), versus the traditional H.
The owners further determined that Amara would benefit from a different sundeck configuration, based on how they like to relax and entertain. Specifically, they wanted an open-plan layout. Feadship removed a bulwark plus added stowage lockers to make it happen. All-new teak decking, of course, went in place as well. (The foredeck and bridge deck also benefitted from new teak.)
Inside, everything from wall paneling to carpeting and furniture either received a refresh or got replaced. This extended to the crew’s quarters. Finally, while mechanical systems and related piping and pumps largely remain out of sight, they underwent scrutiny, too. Everything is either new or overhauled equipment.
Notably, not every mechanical system is different—or, at least entirely different. In fact, as surprising as it may be, the decades-old superyacht Amara still had her original 1,500-hp Deutz engines. She retains them even now, thanks to extensive refurbishment.
Capt. Tim Rowland, who leads Amara’s crew, is happy to have the yacht back, and is equally happy with the refit. Having overseen several service periods during his career and five new builds, he’s well versed in different yards’ project management. “The entire workforce—from the people in the canteen to the craftsmen working on the boat and the various subcontractors—gave us a very warm welcome from the moment we arrived,” he says.
More About the Superyacht Amara
The superyacht Amara has a notable history. In 1986, the motoryacht launched for an American owner, under the name Cacique. That owner tapped Terence Disdale Design to fashion the interior. Styling and naval architecture, meanwhile, for her steel hull and aluminum superstructure came from De Voogt Naval Architects. Ten people could enjoy cruising aboard as guests, while 14 crewmembers plus a captain handled operations.
In the ensuing years, Cacique changed hands a few times. As you might expect, she changed names each time as well. Among the subsequent names, for instance, are Belle France, Calixe, and Minderella. All the while, the owners and their crews kept her in good working order. Specifically, they took her in for refits in 1993, 2007, and 2016. This is among the reasons why the original Deutz diesel engines could still propel her through the world’s oceans three decades after delivery.
Those refits modernized some systems, however, plus the way the owners and guests liked to live onboard. For example, the refit in 2016 saw the removal of a wall separating the main saloon from the formal dining area. It’s now one flowing space. Out on the sundeck, Feadship removed the bulwarks so that it, too, flowed without visual or physical interruption to the helipad.
The superyacht Amara, available for charter, has two double staterooms, two convertible staterooms, and one full-beam master suite. The convertible cabins, on the lower deck, can feature twin beds or one double. Meanwhile, the master stateroom has a cozy seating area beneath the signature triple ports you see in the yacht’s profile. It additionally has an adjoining lounge.
Finally, the yacht has well more than transatlantic range, specifically 5,600 nautical miles. This, in combination with the better helicopter area and excellent tender and toy assortment, means adventures can take place from Asian to American shores.
The Yacht Amara by the Numbers
LOA: 187’10” (57.3 meters)
Beam: 31’2” (9.51 meters)
Draft: 10’8” (3.3 meters)
Guests: 10 in 5 staterooms
Engines: 2/1,455-hp Deutz
Range: 5,600 nautical miles at 10 knots
Stylist: Frits de Voogt, Mauro Micheli
Naval Architect: Frits de Voogt
Interior Designer: Terence Disdale Design