Onboard the 59m superyacht Marala following her two-year restoration

Written by Sophie Spicknell

Built in 1931 by Camper & Nicholsons, the 58.8-metre classic motor yacht Marala is ready for the charter market following an extensive two-year restoration. The iconic superyacht has been given a new lease of life by Pendennis Shipyard and now brings opulence and exquisite detail to a whole new level.Marala yacht cruisingMarala is one of the few surviving yachts of her era, and has lived a colourful life. Her story takes place in 1929 when Montague Stanley Napier placed an order for a new 58.8-metre steel superyacht, but sadly passed away before he could take delivery in 1931. As a result of this, she was sold to aeroplane builder Sir Richard Fairey, who named her Evadne. In the years to follow, Marala had only four owners and was given various names, such as Zapala and Gaviota IV.Marala yacht exteriorMarala was well-maintained and underwent numerous modifications in her lifetime, and during World War II she was even modified to serve as a navy vessel. In 1962, Marala was purchased by Hungarian businessman Robert de Balkany who named her after his first two daughters, Marina and Alexandra. He also decorated the interior in a bold Savoir blue in honour of his wife, Princess Maria Gabriella of the House of SavoyMarala yacht wheelhouseMarala came onto the market again in 2016 for the first time in 53 years and was sold in 2017. At the hands of her new devoted owner and the remarkably talented team at Pendennis, work began to restore her back to her 1930s heyday.Marala yacht cruisingThe two-year restoration involved strengthening large parts of her steelworks, while preserving as much of her original riveted construction by Charles E. Nicholson. Her powertrains were refurbished and her timber was replaced, while still retaining a great amount of her original woodwork. Marala now harnesses a modern electrical system onboard, but wherever possible Pendennis sought out original materials, such as lignum vitae within her stern tube bearings.Marala yacht exterior detailThe interior of Marala has been restored back to her original glory, with a soft Art-Deco design by London-based design house Muza Lab. The design team used the archives of the National Maritime Museum and the original plans of Marala to ensure an authentic vision and to pay homage to her spirit and heritage. The result is a wistful world of the 1930s cradled in an ambience of nostalgia. Marala yacht saloonMarala’s guests will be treated like luxury onboard, much like her distinguished alumni of Frank Sinatra and Salvador Dali. Marala also featured in the 2001 film The Cat’s Meow, in which she represented William Randolph Hearst’s yacht, Oneida.Marala yacht diningThe main saloon of Marala remains similar to her original design with Muza Lab describing it as ‘Gatsby-esque glamour’ with a skylight and working fireplace. Her stunning dining area allows for seating for up to 12 guests, surrounded by wood panelling and period chandeliers.Marala yacht master stateroomMarala yacht master bathroomMarala yacht loungeEach of Marala’s six staterooms are a work of art, with her owner’s suite situated on the main deck. The master stateroom has its own private access starboard into a delightful lounge area and includes an opulent ensuite bathroom with his-and-hers sinks.Marala yacht stateroomMarala yacht stateroomMarala yacht stateroomThe remaining five guest staterooms of Marala are located on the lower deck and include a full-beam VIP suite aft and three double staterooms, all with ensuite bathrooms. Her twin stateroom includes the original sleigh bed which has been beautifully restored and carefully lengthened.Marala yacht exterior deck Marala yacht JacuzziMarala yacht exterior deckThe exterior spaces of Marala also live up to the expectations of her interior. She features a copper spa Jacuzzi pool and plenty of informal banquet seating. Another unique detail onboard is her teak ‘treasure chest’ that houses an outdoor cocktail bar.Marala yacht dining exteriorMarala yacht tenderIn terms of performance, Marala is able to reach a top speed of 13 knots and a comfortable cruising speed of 11 knots from her original 1931 MAN engines. Marala is ready for charter in Summer 2023, cruising the West Mediterranean, the Adriatic and possibly Greece with Ocean Independence.Marala yacht cruising

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