Luca Bassani always wanted to be on the water. For the Founder and Chief Designer of Wally—the brand known for its sexy, futuristic designs—the ideal yachting experience involves open-air living and an effortless connection with the sea. Through Wally’s pioneering concepts and innovative firsts, Bassani has propelled the yachting industry forward for nearly three decades, sometimes ahead of his time but always in stride with the next revolution.
That next revolution is here.
Fresh from its world debut at Cannes, the standout Wally WHY200 is an amalgamation of firsts, not only for the builder, but also for the industry. Standing tall and fierce, with walls of tinted glass and carbon fiber reflecting the angular aesthetic and conveying the wow factor that distinguishes a Wally build, the WHY200 is both striking and inviting. Its open-plan layout and expansive beach club with fold-down terraces beckon the onlooker to step aboard and bask on the water for the day. But beyond its imposing appearance, the 88-foot WHY200 is further defined by its engineering ingenuity: a wide-body, full-beam layout that maximizes interior living space while defying structural norms atop a hybrid semi-displacement hull, with a groundbreaking glass-wrapped master suite in the bow, superyacht-level crew quarters, and a four-drive IPS engine package, all in an under-24-meter (79-foot) load line length.
The Wally WHY200 answers the demand for superyacht living that is not hindered by the slower-speed, full-displacement hull necessary for most high-volume yacht designs. As many hybrid or crossover designs are signified by the letter “X,” Wally chose the dual-meaning “WHY” to indicate that this design represents the next generation of hybrid while hinting at life’s more existential question.
The Wally WHY200 is the result of the work of Wally design team—led by Bassani—and the Ferretti Group Engineering department, the Ferretti Group having incorporated the Wally brand in its portfolio in 2019. Laurent Giles NA Ltd. oversaw the naval architecture of this new design, which features an unusually high 16-foot bow, and the aerodynamic Wallypower-esque glass and superstructure distinguished by an upper-deck overhang that extends, pillarless, over the aft deck. Rigorous tank testing at the University of Southampton in the UK yielded a seaworthy, stable vessel capable of up to 23 knots.
Not to be overlooked is the overall structural design of the WHY200, for which painstaking research and engineering went into its creation. The boat is wrapped in glass, which is so advanced in its construction that it serves as a structural component itself. The salon is devoid of bulkheads to maximize the open-plan feel, with the central carbon stairs being the main structural support. Likewise, the aft portion of the main deck is completely sheltered but still open-air living because it is protected by the upper-deck overhang, which is pillarless, cantilevered and devoid of vibration.
With just under 200 gross tons of interior volume (hence the “200″) and a sub-24-meter waterline length, the WHY200 slips under the Commercial Large Yacht Code (LY2) restrictions, thus offering owners lower running costs and more flexibility, from survey requirements to anchorages and onboard passenger allowances.
The list of innovations continues once aboard the WHY200, whose naval architecture sees the side decks on the main level eliminated so as to maximize the interior space within the yacht’s 25-foot-2-inch beam. Designed by Studio A. Vallicelli & C., the interior of the WHY200 encompasses 2,045 square feet, including a 538-square-foot main salon that boasts up to 50 percent more living space than traditional yachts of this size. The contemporary living area is outfitted in open teak furnishings with neutral tones and sandy accents, the open-plan space interrupted only by a central carbon-fiber staircase that offers both structural and access functionality between the lower-deck accommodations and the glass-encased sky lounge above.
Uniquely, the airy main deck culminates in an unconventional owner’s suite in the bow, another first, which spans the yacht’s full beam and enjoys uninterrupted 270-degree views over the sea through wraparound glass windows. Situated up and farthest from the engine room, this area also sees reduced noise and vibration levels.
The lower deck offers owners the choice of a three- or four-stateroom configuration, while the crew quarters aft are the largest capacity for this yacht class, thanks to the smaller engine-room footprint afforded by the yacht’s Volvo pod propulsion system. Up to five crewmembers are comfortably accommodated in three cabins, with two heads and a crew mess.
The glass and carbon upper deck houses another first for Wally: an enclosed wheelhouse and sky lounge. The overhang on this deck not only protects the aft deck below, but also provides a spacious aft terrace for lounging and entertaining. Mirrored doors in the wheelhouse lead to the foredeck, which is only a portion of the 1,453-square-foot usable outdoor living space.
Because the yacht falls under the Large Commercial Yacht Code’s 24-meter rule, up to 20 passengers can be accommodated while cruising, and with outdoor and indoor space so plentiful throughout, there are ample opportunities for entertaining aboard the WHY200.
Wally is known for incorporating the latest in state-of-the-art gadgetry into its builds, and the WHY200 is fitted with a 4G wireless network connection with home automation control throughout, which allows guests to manage all audio-visual and entertainment systems—including the 5.1 Premium audio system inside and Sonance system outside—via mobile devices. An integrated Naviop system affords access to control and navigation information.
The most preferred area for entertainment aboard the WHY200 will undoubtedly be the expansive beach club, whose foldout bulwarks offer three points of water access, and within which two concealed garages house a variety of water toys and a 13-foot tender. Larger than other beach clubs in this class, this space is a true terrace on the water that provides an unparalleled experience with the sea.
The WHY200 is Wally’s first hybrid yacht and as such features an adaptive Volvo dual-propulsion system that allows for the transition between hyper-displacement or long-range-displacement modes. The first WHY200 is fitted with first-generation quad Volvo Penta D-13 IPS 1350 engines of 1,000 hp each, which, coupled with the fins and gyrostabilizers, afford superior seakeeping and stability.
The WHY200 is a production build that invites the owner to customize the layout, engine package and stabilization features. As Hull No. 1 makes her rounds on the European show circuit, three further builds are currently under construction.
Always imitated but never duplicated, what Wally has is the courage to be different. And with the WHY200, Wally team have taken one giant step closer to an efficient, beautifully designed, open-air experience on the water.
To learn more about Wally Yachts and the WHY200 visit wally.com