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This New 200-Foot Explorer Yacht Is a Hard-Nosed Cargo Ship in a Luxury Vessel’s Body

Project Nautilus is capable of lifting a staggering 22,000 pounds—or four Rolls-Royce Phantoms.

Project Nautilus Turquoise Yachts

When it comes to boating, hard-nosed practicality and lavish style don’t often converge—but Istanbul-based Turquoise Yachts is aiming to change that. The new 203-foot Project Nautilus expedition yacht, which is practically a Meccano set on water, boasts a foredeck as sleek as any you might find on a luxury vessel—and a pair of industrial-grade cranes to go with it.

Capable of lifting a staggering 22,000 pounds each—or four Rolls-Royce Phantoms—the two cranes have been cleverly integrated to ensure the explorer yacht retains a luxury feel. In fact, if you look at the profile of the vessel, it’s near impossible to spot them. But despite the cranes’ svelte design, they still pack enough pull to make your cargo ship jealous. They can hoist a tender measuring up to 39-feet and launch and receive sailing boats, submarines, cars, toys or whatever else you please that’s within the weight parameters.

The ingenious concept is the handiwork of yacht designer Luiz De Basto and the engineering firm Nautical Structures. “To avoid a cargo ship industrial look, which would be inevitable using regular off-the-shelf cranes, I have ensured that the cranes are part of the superstructure, integrated into the overall design, a unique and revolutionary solution,” De Basto said.


Beyond the cranes and elegant exterior lines, the megayacht has all the creature comforts one would expect from a summer-y vacation vessel, including an aft-deck pool, a beach club, bar, gym, sauna, cinema, helipad and sundeck. There are five well-appointed guest cabins and a dedicated crew area, but the owner’s suite is the real pièce de résistance. Situated on the upper deck, the stateroom boasts spectacular 270-degree views of the horizon and is just a short stroll from the hot tub.

Another drawcard is the placement of the tender deck. The sprawling 43-foot space is located at the front of the vessel which means work and play stay separate. Moreover, there is a full workshop for tender maintenance and enough space to comfortably stow that 39-foot tender, which is rare on a yacht of this size.

Project Nautilus wants to strike the rare balance between elegant form and rugged function. There’s no arguing the yacht maker has succeeded on at least one of those points. Check out the the drool-worthy renders below:

Project Nautilus

Turquoise Yachts

Project Nautilus

Turquoise Yachts

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