When Yacht Première previewed the plans for the colossal Alloy 220’, then under construction, last year in issue 16, we called it “a genuine tour de force by the New Zealand master builders”, but at Alloy it was known simply as “the big one”. Modesty aside, Vertigo is a masterpiece that Alloy Yachts can be proud of.
When it was launched, one of the shipyard’s people rightly commented: “It has been an incredible project.” And the expert sailors and builders of Alloy Yachts are certainly used to exceptional results, as shown by their most recent creations: Red Dragon, a 52 metre / 170’ sloop, featured three years ago in issue 9 of Yacht Première; Mondango, a 52 metre / 170’ ketch, featured two years ago in issue 12 of Yacht Première; Kokomo, a 58.4 metre / 191’6” sloop, featured last year in issue 17 of Yacht Première; and Imagine, a 44 metre / 145’ sloop, featured this year in issue 20 of Yacht Première.
However, in spite of this impressive sequence of genuinely unique sailing vessels, Alloy Yachts has taken a decisive step further with its latest yacht Vertigo. First of all, this is due to its record-breaking measurements.
With a length of 67.2 metres / 220 feet, the new ketch is the seventh sailing yacht by Alloy over 50 metres in length, but more importantly it is the first to measure more than 60 metres in length and, at 837 GRT, the first to exceed the 500 GRT limit. All of this means that Vertigo is not only the largest luxury sailing yacht built to date by the New Zealand shipyard, but also the largest luxury sailing yacht built to date in the whole of the southern hemisphere. Last but not least, Vertigo is also the largest sailing yacht designed by the famous Philippe Briand. Paradoxically, as if all of this were not enough, Vertigo has even surpassed… itself: looking back through its phases of production, from the initial design stage dating back to the end of 2004, the first drawings were for a sailing yacht with an overall length of less than 200 feet.
Since then, however, the design idea evolved to reach the final design for a sailing yacht with an overall length of more than 220 feet. Construction started on Monday 1 September 2008, and after more than 29 months of hard work by all the teams at Alloy Yachts’ facilities, Vertigo finally took to the water at the Alloy Yachts yard. The yacht was launched on Tuesday 22 February 2011 and delivered on May 4th 2011 after two months of sea trials. The unique new Vertigo is now revealed in the pages of Yacht Première to well-deserved acclaim.
The big one: a genuine masterpiece by Alloy
As is evident from the description above, with the new Vertigo the New Zealand shipyard Alloy Yachts has excelled itself. However, this is due not just to the many record-breaking measurements, but also to the state-of-the-art technical and technological characteristics. It’s important to bear in mind that, for Alloy Yachts, “excelling itself” does not mean taking risks or overdoing it, but rather overcoming the complex challenges of the project and exceeding the Owner’s requests.
The extraordinary challenge that the Alloy Yachts teams and Philippe Briand faced in creating Vertigo was their primary objective, the Owner’s main requirement: Vertigo had to be large but at the same time sensitive to sail. And the result? Success, as the yacht sails smoothly and majestically. Vertigo is a modern fly bridge sailing yacht, but more importantly a high performance cruising ketch, produced in light aluminium alloy for both the hull and the superstructure. Alloy’s “big one” stands out for the lines of the hull, which make it a unique vessel on the world scene for large sailing yachts, as Vertigo is the first vessel in this size class to have a hull with an almost vertical prow. This technical solution made it possible to achieve a longer hull length at the water line, at 61.00 metres / 200’2”, a length not much shorter than the overall length of the hull at 67.20 metres / 220’6”. [...]