The idea of a superyacht that pampers guests with luxury both atop and below the waterline is one that has long tickled the imaginations of everyone from adventurous children to demanding billionaires. But it’s ultimately proven better-suited to the pens of fanciful designers than the realities of the marina. With the Nautilus, U-Boat Worx seems determined to bring the concept to reality.
It puts its considerable experience in personal submarine design into the impressive 123-ft (37.5-m) vessel, which combines the usual trappings of superyacht life – sundeck, pool, bar and more – with the unique abilities to dive down to 650-ft (~200-m) depths and stay underwater for days at a time.
We always imagined the personal submarine market to be a rather leisurely one, filled with extended testing and development periods submerged in glassy-blue tropical waters. But U-Boat Worx has been absolutely grinding lately. Along with navigating a busy late summer schedule of major yachting events, it’s found the time to ramp up personal submarine production and drop prices to record lows. Now it introduces something entirely distinct from its usual lineup of submarines that can be launched via superyacht — a superyacht that works as a submarine in and of itself.
In contrast to the similarly large UWEP party submarine U-Boat Worx previewed earlier this year, the Nautilus combines the comforts and amenities of a yacht with the submersible capabilities of a submarine. It’s meant to give discerning nautical enthusiasts the best of both worlds (or at least something to brag about at the yacht club bar).
While the final configuration will ultimately be tailored to each buyer, plans call for a large sundeck that includes a freshwater pool, dining area and bar. Below deck, the steel pressure hull comes lined with large semi-bubble windows that deliver an underwater experience even while the yacht cruises atop the sea. Four of those windows surround the 538-sq-ft (50-sq-m) dining area and lounge, while others bring subaquatic views into the master bedroom and four staterooms. There’s also a full galley.
The 1,250-ton Nautilus is designed to carry 10 passengers and up to seven crew members. When on the water, its diesel-electric powertrain delivers cruising speeds of 9 knots (16.7 km/h) and a range of up to 3,200 nautical miles (5,926 km).
Eventually passengers will tire of lounging around the pool and bar, and they’ll yearn to immerse themselves in their aquatic surrounds. At this point, the sunroof drops down to cover over the dining and bar area, preparing the vessel to dive into the water. Like the UWEP, the Nautilus can carry passengers to depths of 650 feet below the surface. It’s designed to stay underwater for a maximum of four days, or six hours when cruising at 4 knots (7.4 km/h). In addition to simply exploring the underwater world, the submersible capability is meant as a way of handling rough surface conditions.
“If the sea becomes too rough, you simply dive and continue your voyage in comfort,” says U-Boat Worx chairman and founder Bert Houtman. “With the Nautilus, the yachting market will never be the same again.”
The Nautilus also has its own pressure-resistant tender that fits below the aft deck like the final puzzle piece. The all-electric “Aronnax” tender can carry up to five divers to a scuba location of their choosing.
U-Boat Worx presented the Nautilus design at the 2022 Monaco Yacht Show over the weekend. It’s still a pile of pretty pictures for now, but U-Boat Worx seems pretty gung-ho about building it rather than leaving it hanging in the concept stage like so many other submarine-yachts. At a cool €25 million (approx. US$25 million), the company will have to wait for the right type of buyer to come along and commission a build, but that’s a steal compared to the $2 billion said buyer could be forklifting over for an Austrian-designed Migaloo submersible superyacht.
Source: U-Boat Worx
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