“I have always loved the concept of a superyacht limousine but I hadn’t seen yet anything that captured the level of classic and contemporary styling and features I felt should be attached to such a vessel,” says Kit Carlier, design director of the eponymously named studio. “We wanted to create something that emulated superyacht class in classic styling, all wrapped around an extremely modern core.”
Chimera takes styling cues from classic old chauffer-driven cars, enabling guests to hide away in its luxurious private interior while being chauffeured from a port helm station positioned forward.
The interior is tastefully luxurious, offering entertainment, bespoke lighting and access to wireless communication and Bluetooth via touch screens located from the helm to the main cabin as well as the vessel’s own app, which allows smart devices to access the vessel’s facilities without passengers having to leave the comfort of their seat. Forward, the internal landing accesses a large luggage space (or, in different configurations, a day-head) and also provides access to the helm and forward boarding points. The concept can be widely customised and adapted to suit client requirements, for example the layout can be adjusted to suit 12 passengers.
For Carlier, the most unique thing about Chimera is how high-tech it is underneath the classic, uncomplicated shell. “This is particularly significant with the full electric version we are currently working on which has a completely integrated electronic system allowing passengers to be connected to all media and communications when onboard,” he says. “We decided early on that Chimera’s function would be as limousine - this meant we didn’t compromise on the luxury and comfort that she delivers. We wanted the passage in Chimera to be an experience.”
Modern construction methods and use of advanced composite materials – design insights taken from Carlier’s years in the superyacht and boat-building sectors – mean that weight will be kept to a minimum, and Chimera will offer three key propulsion options: conventional rail turbo diesel engines, diesel/electric hybrid and the opportunity for fully electric is being researched presently.
As the realm of superyacht design evolves and the way that owners use their yachts changes, naturally what they want from a tender has also transformed. “Apart from the functionality of a tender and whether it is for water sports or as a limousine, I think clients are looking for something different,” suggests Carlier. “They are looking for something that allows them to stand out from the other tenders going to and from the marina. Superyachts are getting bigger and the use of shadow yachts is becoming more popular, this means clients aren’t always restricted to a tender with specific proportions previously required for stowage in confined garage spaces. This instead means fewer compromises, allowing for added comfort and luxury.”
Officially founded in January 2015, Kit Carlier Design is New Zealand’s first and only dedicated and complete marine interior design service, bringing together a small, dedicated team that have 40 years combined marine design. Carlier himself has a firm grounding in the superyacht industry, having worked for Alloy Yachts as project manager, production manager and lead designer across yachts like Kokomo, Vertigo, Loretta Anne, Encore and Mondango. Working with Carlier from the start as senior deisgn is another former-Alloy team member, Donna Maree, one of New Zealand’s key yacht interior designers.
“My time at Alloy Yachts saw me immersed throughout the entire design team; working closely with the systems, electronics and structural design departments,” Carlier says. “It gave me a complete understanding of the expectations clients have when beginning the creation of their vessel. It now allows us to ensure all elements have been thought through in the early stages meaning there are no surprises down the track.”
Kit Carlier Design
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