Over a century ago, Oscar Wilde wrote, "It is through art, and through art only, that we can realize our perfection." As I crossed the quay in Monaco and boarded Saramour, the latest in CRN's Magnifica line, the realization of perfection was immediate. That first impression was only reinforced as I wandered throughout the 151-foot trideck motoryacht, awed by what I saw.
The yacht is itself a floating piece of sculpture, her clean lines a sleek interplay of light and shadow over unadorned but flawless white surfaces. It is a fitting exterior for an interior that is as close to being perfect for its intended function as any I've seen. Saramour is, in fact, a gallery for the owner's extensive collection of pen and ink studies, watercolors, oil paintings, bronze and marble sculptures and antique Persian carpets. I made no catalog of the wide-ranging collection, but Rembrandt, Dali, Kandinsky and others of similar repute were present.
In every room, even the heads, passageways and exercise room, sublime art brings a smile to the face and joy to the heart. The white oak decks and lacquered joinery, a different hue in each space, have been specifically designed to serve as subtle but enhancing backdrops. The lighting washes the walls and niches. The beds, sofas and tables assured me this was indeed a yacht meant to be lived in and to go to sea, but I still had the uneasy feeling that if I spoke too loudly, a disapproving docent would quickly be tapping my shoulder.
The day in Monaco began with a bit of serendipity as I unexpectedly found myself sharing a car with Carlo Nuvolari, half of the talented duo of Nuvolari & Lenard, who styled Saramour's exterior and laid out her interior arrangement. Once aboard, I had a chance to meet Carmen Aiello, who designed her interior. No detail had been omitted. Colors from the main objet d'art in each room were echoed in the bedspreads and upholstery. Even the books lying atop the bedside cabinets-often guides to the art in the room-had covers of the proper shade. Like a calm lake lapping a wooded shoreline in autumn, the room itself was a reflection of the adjoining palette.
As important as the styling, décor and interior design are, though, it cannot be forgotten that Saramour is a yacht, meant to go to sea in comfort and safety. That responsibility fell to CRN shipyard, located in the city of Ancona on Italy's Adriatic coast. Ancona is a town with a history of commercial shipbuilding, and in fact, Ferretti's expansion of the yard was enabled by the conversion of an adjoining builder of large ships. The pool of talent in such a place is always impressive, with skills passed from generation to generation of artisans. Saramour, finely executed in steel and aluminum by CRN's team of talented shipwrights and craftsmen, is proof of the value of such continuity. A tour of the engineroom and an examination of other CRN vessels in various stages of construction assured me that she wasn't just a pretty face; the bones and sinews beneath the skin were strong and healthy. She should be as pleasant a yacht to her crew as she is to her owner.
Although she has a starboard entry foyer for use when moored side-to, boarding from the stern when she's Med-moored is a stunning experience. A comfortable seating arrangement and some smaller sculptures displayed on the aft deck give a hint, but that first step through the glass doors into the saloon, with a view of the open dining area beyond, is breathtaking.