Phuket Boating: Pershing the limits [VIDEO]
PHUKET: If boating enthusiasts know one thing, they know there is cruising in style, and then there is Pershing. The range of high-end yachts from Italian boatbuilder Ferretti, from the baby 50.1 to the silver bullet 115ft, deliver exactly what is expected of a yacht dubbed the “Lamborghini of the sea”.
Hand-stitched leather interior by Poltrona Frau, the exclusive leather supplier to Ferarri and Maserati, sleek lines, sublime wood finishing throughout whisper elegance – but lurking beneath the beauty is the beast: twin-V12 turbo engines each producing up to 1,640hp that rocket the boat up to speeds of 45 knots. That’s about 80kmh, on the water.
“Owners in Thailand have embraced the Pershing brand,” said Martin Holmes, general manager at Lee Marine, based at Phuket Boat Lagoon.
“When they go out, they do not go out for week – time is precious. With a boat like this, you can go from Amanpuri to the Similans in about 40 minutes in absolute comfort.
“And when everyone turns up – you can take off for another destination. You can go twice as far, twice as fast, up to about about 300nm in a day.”
Taking ownership of a Pershing can be a very emotional experience. “These boats are the very stuff dreams are made of. They are the personification of passion on water,” Martin explained.
“I wouldn’t say I’ve seen a grown man cry, but if you tell people to be at the handover at 8am, they’ll be there at 6.
“It’s the realization of a dream to own a boat like this. To know that so much goes into building one of these from the ground that what results is a work of art, that happens to be the best, fastest boat on the water – that you will never be overtaken.
“I recently took a client to the factory in Mondolfo, Italy, to see boats being built. He said it was just like visiting Maranello to buy a Ferrari.”
As Pershings have their own distinctive character, the owners must have the personality to match and being young at heart is a good start, explained Martin.
“We’ve got young Pershing owners and much older owners, but what they have in common is that they like fun, excitement, adventure, thrill-seeking. With these boats you find an excuse to go out,” he said.
The whole boat is driven by the one little joystick on the bridge, so captains of nearly any caliber can experience a 100-ton yacht going 45kts in open water.
The automatic trim system, developed by Ferretti’s product development division Advanced Yacht Technology & Design (AYT&D), kicks in and the vibration is non-existent as every form of power is transmitted down the back to the surface-drive propellers.
The “surface drive” has become the signature of Pershing yachts. The propellers are only half submerged, providing much less drag, much sharper turning circles and the distinctive “rooster’s tail” as the yacht autographs its wake on the sea.
“You could be standing on the beach in Phuket and watch 100 boats go past, and you’ll know when a Pershing goes by,” Martin noted.
“These are not showpieces just to look good in the marina, they are made to go to sea. The entire range are all class A offshore certified, extremely well built machines manufactured for use at sea.
“As hard as you try you won’t break it, the limitations of the helmsman are far lower than the limitations of the yacht.”
But even when the boat is screaming along at 45kts, you can sit at the helm and talk normally.
“Even if the boat is going like crazy, you’re in the lap of luxury and it’s calm – it has to be, otherwise you’ll freak out,” Martin explained.
“Inside the boat, you don’t feel the sensation so much, but as soon as you step outside and your hat and glasses fly off and you can’t look out because tears are streaming out of your eyes – you realize how fast you’re going.”
Lee Marine, which has been a dedicated Ferretti dealer since 2002, received a delivery in December and have a three-cabin Pershing 64 currently in Singapore.
“It’s a three-cabin layout, with a full beam master cabin. At 20m long, it is arguably the perfect day boat,” Mr Holmes said.
The yacht comes complete with a 3.2m tender powered by jet water propulsion, a fully retractable sunroof over the rear deck and a full glass retractable partition which at the touch button quickly, quietly and completely disappears into the floor.
The “disappearing window” opens the boat right up, allowing guests to enjoy the indoor entertaining area and the adjoining deck as one.
“It’s about the freedom and knowing that privacy is luxury,” Martin explained. “When you’re on your boat, it’s just you and the ones you love around you.”
For more information contact Lee Marine, located at The Boat Lagoon, 22/1 Moo 2 Thepkasattri Road, Muang Phuket, Thailand 83200. Tel: 076-239729. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.leemarine.com
— Chris Husted
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