Heesen announced that on Saturday 3 November 2018, the hull and superstructure of Project Castor were joined together at the facility in Oss.
Castor is the fourth yacht in the 55m Steel Class, which features exterior lines by Frank Laupman of Omega Architects. At 760GT, Castor is the largest by volume 55-metre currently in build in the Netherlands. Her interior comes from the boards of renowned design studio Bannenerg & Rowell, marking their eighth collaboration with Heesen.
Frank Laupman has given the exterior lines muscular overtones, but these design cues are cleverly integrated into the traditional Heesen sleek look. The design is efficient and rational, with iconic elements such as the vertical floor-to-ceiling windows in the forward section of the main deck as well as full height windows in the main saloon and skylounge, open bulwarks, and the “shark tooth” on the overhang of the superstructure. All these elements help make the Heesen 55m Steel Class distinct and recognizable from afar.
Like her sister ships, Castor sports the fast displacement hull form (FDHF) devised by Van Oossanen, which delivers high levels of efficiency across the whole speed spectrum. Besides efficiency and low resistance, the 55m Steel FDHF provides fantastic comfort, and thanks to the large stabiliser fins by Naiad – installed forward of centre – this includes exceptional roll reduction at anchor. Another advantage of a slippery hull is that it can be powered by smaller engines and decreasing the engine power comes with many benefits – in particular increased space and reduced noise. Two MTU 8V 4000 M63 main engines (which meet IMO Tier III emissions regulations) will deliver 1,000kW each, allowing Castor to reach a maximum speed of 15.5 knots. She will have an impressive transatlantic range of 4,500 nautical miles at a cruise speed of 13 knots, making her a true bluewater motor yacht.
Project Castor features some innovations from her predecessors: a full-beam sky lounge, a larger master stateroom now measuring 73 square meters, and larger lower deck suites as the VIP has been moved to the bridge deck. Her contemporary Bannenberg & Rowell interior, which features signature woods and natural stones, draws on a subtle but warm colour palette which maximises the sense of airiness delivered by the generous interior spaces and the natural light flooding in from the floor-to-ceiling windows.
Project Castor is available for delivery in Spring 2020.