Designing the interior of a superyacht worth hundreds of millions of dollars is no easy task. It’s a delicate balance between innovation and strict safety regulations. And client demands might range from minutely detailed custom stairwells to permanently affixed statues weighing several tons.
Andrew Winch, founder of the London-based design firm Winch Design, has dedicated a career of several decades to outfitting private jets and yachts according to such requests. So when a wealthy client decided to buy a second yacht, the question of who would design it was simple to answer: the same firm that created the first one.
In 2004, Winch outfitted the Phoenix, a 197-foot yacht that featured interiors influenced by 1920s Parisian Art Deco. This time, the owner wanted something bigger, more bold for what he aptly named Phoenix².
“The client once again wanted a yacht that was Art Deco in theme, but with this yacht, he wanted to have New York City as the influence,” says Winch. “The client works in real estate and has a real fascination with New York’s skyscrapers.”
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After accompanying the owner to the Big Apple and taking notes on such specific landmarks as the Chrysler Building and Radio City Music Hall, Winch got to work. Three and a half years later, with the help of German-based Lurssen Shipyard, Winch’s largest custom-built craft was completed.
At the very front of the 295-foot megayacht is an 18-foot figurehead of a phoenix. Weighing five tons, the work of art was inspired by the shape of the Chrysler Building.
“The owner is drawn to the power and charisma of New York’s skyscrapers,” says Winch. “He wanted the bow of the yacht to include a phoenix because, metaphorically, the phoenix rises to soaring heights much as skyscrapers do.”
As with the original Phoenix, the Phoenix² features a private office, an exterior deck including a Jacuzzi, as well as numerous bedrooms. The owner’s private suite features a full 180-degree window, offering views of the surrounding seascape, as well as its own personal Jacuzzi.