Kathleen Anne, the second yacht in Feadship’s pioneering SL39 design platform, is the very definition of a floating private retreat. Built by Koninklijke De Vries Scheepsbouw in Aalsmeer, the Netherlands she features a modern exterior from the boards of Guido de Groot and an elegant contemporary interior by Bannenberg & Rowell Design.
Kathleen Anne has an elegant contemporary exterior style. Her forward bulwark has been drawn high to reflect the overall lines of the boat, while the bow slopes downwards to give a faster look than one might expect from a ‘typical’ classic Feadship.
“A 39-meter yacht with three decks can have awkward proportions, especially if you respect all the heights,” explains designer Guido de Groot. “It is therefore crucial that the design emphasizes the length of the boat. This is why we chose to have lots of fine design lines going from aft to forward. All the surfaces have small steps to indicate lines that accentuate the length of the boat.”
Another party involved in creating this impressive exterior aesthetic was Bannenberg & Rowell Design, especially with the deployment of the light grey color in the superstructure recesses and behind the fashion plates. The company from London also took care of the exterior logos and name, although Bannenberg & Rowell Design’s main responsibility was, of course, the interior. “The owners are charming people to work with as they are very decisive and clear on their requirements,” says Dickie Bannenberg. “They wanted a crisp but homely feel with lots of loose furniture specifically tailored to individual spaces and their use.”
The entrance lobby has a parquet floor in bands of oak and walnut, with a sculptural staircase in stainless steel, oak and leather that connects all three decks. The benefits and flexibility of the loose-furniture layout are immediately seen in the main lounge. This is used far more often on Kathleen Anne than is the case on many yachts when the main saloon can have more of a walk-through role.
As the primary social area, the lounge offers two distinctive and comfortable seating areas to port and starboard, each centered over a rug that is integral to the overall carpet onboard. The overall color scheme is knocked back and neutral with punches and accents of color from the cushions, for instance, and the pair of bright red-top chairs.
Two high gloss buffet cabinets with white Calcutta marble tops house china and glass and serve as a visual partition with the dining area forward.
The refined owner’s stateroom includes an anteroom/study with exceptional exterior views and a full-beam bedroom with a walk-in dressing room. The first part of the bedroom contains a low coffee table with two low easy chairs. While the impressive bed looks completely freestanding to give a less built-in feel, there is actually plenty of storage underneath. Carefully chosen black and white photography by Jason Langer hangs on bone-colored linen paneling, set within walnut joinery.
To the right of the television is the door to the bathroom, which has echoes of a grand British hotel with chunky lights, white marble tops and splashes of teak and walnut. In addition to a nice bath there is a large walk-in shower and a separate toilet.
Flexibility is integral to the concept of the bridge deck lounge, which resembles an - albeit highly sophisticated – intimate family living room. With the aft doors flung open, the aft area forms part of the outdoor-in ‘beach club’ lounge during the day, while in the evenings the focus lies on watching movies and playing on a cool games cube in front of the huge 50-inch TV.
The aft area of the bridge deck is surprisingly large for a 39-meter yacht, with the option to create a lovely shaded area above the sofa.
Kathleen Anne has four guest suites on the lower deck. All the bedrooms have been paneled in broad planks of white oak, blended with simple cream fabric upholstery. Deeply fluted plinths and chunky macassar ebony footboards distinguish the beds, all fitted with Savoir mattresses.
While offering plenty of space for those who do love to bathe in water or sun, the shading facilities are also one of the most ingenious aspects of the sun deck. The cantilevered umbrellas above the Jacuzzi are made of stainless steel and sailcloth, and each unit can be folded up and unplugged. Here as elsewhere on Kathleen Anne, people have a wealth of choices at any time of the night or day. And that is a rare if not entirely unique virtue for a 39- meter yacht.
Interior photos by David Churchill / www.yachtimages.co.uk