Like its fictional namesake, the Navetta 30 from Italian shipyard Filippetti is not afraid to break the rules in pursuit of a decadent lifestyle. In offering a remarkable six cabins within the 99′ 7” length of this custom version however, has M/Y Gatsby taken things a little too far?
Launched in June 2013 and christened M/Y Gatsby, the first Navetta 30 to be delivered by the Filippetti shipyard evokes many characteristics of the eponymous character created by F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1925, before being revisited by Leonardo DiCaprio in Baz Luhrmann’s 2013 blockbuster adaptation of the novel.
Filippetti and Gatsby
Both are attractive and charismatic individuals who charitably and liberally entertain guests with luxurious abandon. Both are energetic, fresh and exhilarating company. But deep down one knows that for all their magnificence and munificence, with so much that is commendable, each possesses a basic character flaw. Their generosity ultimately conspires in their downfall.
Fortunately, in the case of the Filippetti Navetta 30 the issue is eminently rectifiable, an individual trait that is unlikely to recur in future generations. Not to leave a dark cloud hanging over what is a truly wonderful yacht, unlike the novel let us address M/Y Gatsby’s issue up front, get over it and move on to exploring this fantastic addition to the Navetta sector. One of M/Y Gatsby’s distinguishing features is her remarkable six cabins in a sub-100′ yacht.
It is also her drawback. Each of the twelve guests onboard enjoys accommodation of relatively generous proportion – especially the owner with a dedicated upper deck-in an environment of consummate luxury, in a very well constructed yacht; but when not in their cabins, scant opportunity exists for guests to be together as a party.
Custom made yacht
The main salon cannot cater for a dozen guests in a single sitting and the exterior spaces suffer from the same problem. Dining as a complete party is made possible however as both the dining tables in the main deck’s formal dining area and on the aft upper deck extend for a full compliment of twelve. But when fully laden with a total manifest of 17 souls aboard (including her five crew), one’s sympathy goes out to the latter who’s work and logistics must be made insufferable due to the crowd occupying such a relatively compact space.
The reality is however, the Filippetti shipyard was commissioned by an owner to build a yacht to his specifications, so putting aside what we’d consider to be their ill-judged undertaking in maximizing guest accommodation, let us consider the yacht from the build, configuration and layout perspective. The launch of Filippetti Yachts in 2009 was marked with the launch of the Daemon 75, with Fausto further demonstrating his expertise in the field of ultra-high performance yachts.
Undoubtedly influenced by the diminishing demand for fast fuelhungry Open craft however, Filippetti added two further ranges to their new build offerings: the ‘Evo’ flybridge line designed by Fulvio de Simoni and ‘Navetta’ displacement series designed on the drawing boards of Pietro Mingarelli.
From their futuristically styled facility in the Italian countryside the family now specializes in 65′ to 115′ yachts, and having previously launched 85′ (26m) Navetta models they recently added the first Filippetti Navetta 30 to their fleet: M/Y Gatsby.
Navetta literally translated from Italian refers to a ‘shuttle’ and in yachting the term has become synonymous with leisurely cruising vessels offering high levels of volume and comfort. ‘Slow motion villas on the sea’ is how one builder has described them in the past… quite a departure from the high-octane adrenaline-fuelled world of Open yachts!
Navetta 30 range
Providing long-range with intelligent naval architecture that ensures their units provide several more knots of top-end speed than one would expect from a Navetta, Filippetti’s displacement range is accurately described by their ‘eco-chic’ strapline. M/Y Gatsby, the Navetta 30 Custom on review, achieves a top speed of 17-knots from her modest twin 1,200hp MTU engines, but perhaps more astonishingly a 3,600nm range at 10-knots.
High capacity fuel (7,100 US Gal) and water tanks (1,000 US Gal) ensure that 15-day autonomy can be maintained, providing extended cruising with minimal environmental impact. At displacement speed the hull’s bow bulb contributes to hydrodynamic efficiency, while at anchor a fin stabilization system provides additional comfort for guests.
After crossing the Atlantic easily on her own bottom, the shallow draft of 6′ 6” (2m) also means Filippetti’s Navetta 30 is well suited to cruising the shallower waters of the Caribbean. So, along with that contentious sixth cabin to optimize charter revenues, she makes an attractive prospect for owners in the Americas.
And what’s more, she looks fantastic too! Skillfully avoiding the somewhat inevitable ‘boxy’ form indicative of high-volume, short-length, tri-deck yachts, Mingarelli has drawn out the Navetta 30’s length with graceful and elegant lines. From the tapered bow the teak cap rail flows softly aft in a feminine sweep, while the shapely quad-glaze forward port lights and flutings of the upper superstructure offset the vertical glazing that encloses her interior.
Filippetti Navetta 30 interior
The rounding and softening of her lines certainly generates a feminine charm and makes her one of the most attractively styled in her class. Stepping aboard M/Y Gatsby a narrow bathing platform initially suggests a lack of access to the water, but when the transom plate is lowered a splendid teak lined terrace is revealed and full use can be made of the watercraft and jet rib tender concealed behind.
Symmetrical staircases lead up into the cockpit, where the deck hardware in both aft quarters is hidden beneath covers that provide additional space to rest a glass when entertaining. The inclusion of a small basin on the starboard side is a neat idea worth noting too, allowing the crew to quickly wash their handles after handling mooring lines. Such thoughtful practical inclusions feature throughout the yacht.
From the cockpit one enters the main salon where soft leather seating for seven guests on the portside faces the low cabinetry to starboard. Large windows frame the outside environment in an attractive manner and flood natural light over the light wood sole that is contrasted by darker joinery. Cleverly adding warmth to the cool contemporary decor, a backlit slab of onyx on the forward bulkhead glows welcomingly, spreading soft, rich honey-colored light over the scene.
Throughout our tour we noted that the level of completion of the interiors matched that of the exterior finish, with the interior fit and finish being all but flawless. Ahead of the main deck bulkhead is yet another clue to Filippetti’s readiness to create their own route and follow an alternate path to tradition, with the wellequipped galley being located to starboard and the guest lobby and day head to port. From the lobby the guests transition to their quarters; the main deck VIP suite, down below for the four guest cabins-doubles amidships and twins forward in symmetrical arrangements-or up to the owner’s private deck.
The VIP has understandably been afforded more generous real estate, and indeed is of dimensions commensurable with the owner’s accommodation on many yachts of this size. Adding further distinction to their imaginative layout of the Navetta 30, Fillippetti have split the crew accommodation; the captain enjoys a rather splendid and secluded cabin in the forepeak-accessed directly from his wheelhouse-while the remainder of the crew is quartered aft with the use of a compact square/mess.
If this arrangement does raise one issue it is with crew access to the wheelhouse and galley, they can only be affected via the exterior lateral passageways.
Filippetti’s clever use of space
True it ensures privacy throughout the yacht’s primary interior spaces, but further adds to the challenges faced by the crew. The owner faces no such impingements however, enjoying full use of the entire upper deck. The central staircase rises into the main cabin, an elongated D-shaped space with magnificent glazing to either side and a through the forward semi-circular windshield.
From the central forward facing bed he enjoys great views, plus direct access onto a forward private terrace-an ideal spot to get away with a book, indulge in sun worship, take breakfast or retire with a cigar before turning in. To port the dressing room and en-suite is well designed and substantial in proportion-covering as it does approximately the same square footage as a double guest cabin.
Running along the starboard side, the passageway that provides access to the aft deck has been widened sufficiently to provide space for a useful office area. The aft deck, with its dining table and space for four freestanding loungers is one of four exterior entertainment spaces for the Navetta 30’s guests. The cockpit we’ve already mentioned and the bow solarium is another example of Filippetti’s clever use of space.
A moveable backrest in the forward sunpad allows for flexible use of the space and a parasol offers shade should it be required. Perhaps the most surprising addition to the yacht’s sunbathing facilities however is perched on the very top of the Filippetti Navetta 30. Forward of the radomes and communications array the yard has included a huge sunpad.
Concealed below a windscreen to ensure little interruption of the yacht’s profile, only a guardrail hints at its presence. The comfort and efficiency of the Navetta 30’s naval architecture becomes immediately evident when underway. When cruising across the waters of Cannes bay we noted the almost complete absence of any wake. A small bow wave traced its way lazily across the azure seas, but behind the wake was flat enough for championship level slalom skiing.
A great looking boat
When considering hydrodynamics a flat wake is as good a visual clue as any to the efficiency of a hull, demonstrating the vessel is not displacing and pushing through a whole load of seawater to achieve forward motion. Aside from our opening comments regarding the layout and inclusion of the sixth cabin on this particular unit, we must confess Filippetti’s Navetta 30 generated excitement in us that few yachts in this genre do.
She’s a great looking boat, expertly built and finished, with some innovative touches. Practical inclusions demonstrate the yard’s expertise in boat building, while her remarkable range, eco-credentials and fuel efficiency are primary considerations. Her interior is attractive and well completed, while the tender garage and swim platform ensure fun for guests.