The Essence of Navigation
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The Essence of Navigation

Y9 Bella

Norm Architects

The Essence of Navigation
By Redazione The Plan -

Travel is said to be a return to the essentials, a rediscovery of its urgency. There must also be such connections behind the new yacht Y9. Coming from the German shipyard Michael Schmidt Yachtbau, it is a sailboat as minimalist as it is refined in its details, materials, and sinuous, enveloping forms. In particular, the Y9 Bella, finished at the end of 2022 and currently in contention in three categories at the Boat International Design and Innovation Awards, is hard to categorize. Measuring approximately 30 m in length, including the bowsprit, it is in all effects a superyacht. The sail surface and lightness make it a candidate for participation in regattas, yet the breadth of its spaces and the different cabins for guests allow it to host numerous sailing enthusiasts at the same time. 

Y9 Bella | © Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen, courtesy Norm Architects L’atmosfera della zona living, che può ospitare fino a otto persone, è resa ancor più confortevole dalla luce naturale che penetra all’interno dalle numerose finestre e dall’effetto tattile delle lamelle in legno delle pareti. Le sedute in stile scandinavo sono fissate al pavimento attraverso apposite clip.

Its simplicity enhances its functionality: every detail is a mix between design, beauty, sustainability and function. Nothing is superfluous. This is true both for the exterior of this flagship, whose sleek and elegant lines bear the signature of the American designer Bill Trip, and the interior, designed by Norm Architects. The heart of outdoor living, in direct contact with the sea, is the spacious aft cockpit with two helm stations, followed by the open-sided cockpit area and covered by a canopy with solar panels. Lightweight and avant-garde materials – like the carbon fiber of the mast, boom, hull, structure, and many other parts of Y9 – and the minimization of the use of artificial light in favor of natural light comply with a philosophy of sustainability. The possibility to navigate completely under sail even with low breezes is the highest expression of this attention to sea life and its ecosystem.

Under this lens, even a material like wood becomes a symbol of a philosophy that respects the surrounding environment. Used both on the exterior deck and in the interior, it creates a welcoming environment with its warm tones, characterizing the cabins and lounge area. The latter is distinguished by sinuous shapes that hint at the structure of the hull. Accessed directly from the stairs leading up to the cockpit lounge, it can host up to eight people in the dining area with Scandinavian-style seating. Next to it there is a tv room illuminated along with the rest of the living area by lots of natural light coming from windows along the sides of the hull and the minimal, innovatively shaped deckhouse. 

Y9 Bella | © Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen, courtesy Norm Architects La cabina armatoriale si trova a prua della nave, impreziosita da un leggero tessuto scamosciato chiaro  che contrasta con il marrone scuro del legno

Continuing toward the bow, separated by a few steps, there is an office with a desk and couch, and then the owner’s suite, which brings together all the most identifying features of the entire yacht. The enveloping shapes, the oak and suede leather on the walls and cabinets, and the delicate, neutral colors create an atmosphere very much like that of home. Inside of Y9 Bella, thanks to the few selected colors, the materiality, and the soberness of the furnishings, there is that atmosphere of serenity and tranquility sought in the experience of the sea. 

Completion: 2022
Shipyard: Michael Schmidt Yachtbau
Exterior Design: Tripp Design
Interior Design: Norm Architects 

Unless otherwise indicated, photography:
Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen, courtesy of Norm Architects

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