Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 25 August 2019

Watch: On board the biggest superyacht at Dubai International Boat Show 2019

The 50-metre 'Rocket' features a rooftop Jacuzzi, spiral staircase and liquid-metal walls

Standing tall among the dozens of yachts moored at Dubai Canal is the 50-metre Rocket. She is the biggest vessel at this year’s Dubai International Boat Show, and is certainly attracting a lot of attention.

While superyachts are far from an uncommon sight in Dubai, rarely are people given the chance to step on board and take in the luxury of these boats' features and unique character.

But Dutch shipyard Heesen, which built Rocket in 2011, is proudly showing off its engineering at this year’s event, and offered The National a glimpse into life on board one of its impressive superyachts.

The privately owned Rocket has been highly personalised.

"I wouldn’t say it’s been fitted out with no budget in mind,” says the yacht's captain Richard Gall, “but it’s been made with a very high budget.

"When you start to personalise a yacht and add in luxury features, that’s when the price starts to really climb.”

The boat had a refit last summer, when three decks, two saloons and six double cabins were updated for a more elegant and contemporary feel.

Look through the photo gallery below to see more of this superyacht:

Heesen PR manager Sara Gioanola points out some of the finishing touches.

“It’s usually very windy on the deck of a superyacht so it’s very important things don’t fly away,” Ms Gioanola says.

“The cushions are made to be extremely heavy so they stay weighted down and the place mats are made sticky so they stay stuck to the table.”

The upper sundeck features a rooftop Jacuzzi, flanked by a padded sunbathing area on either side.

The interior design by Cristiano Gatto includes a one-of-a-kind glass spiral staircase and liquid-metal walls.

Some of the other finishing touches, such as two large Lalique crystal vases, were put in place by Monegasque luxury design shop.

The Rocket can reach up to 23 knots – the same as a smaller speedboat – thanks to its lightweight aluminium structure, making it three times lighter than other vessels of its size.

“This boat has an incredible performance,” Mr Gall says. “It’s the perfect Mediterranean boat.

"You can cruise comfortably overnight, but if you want to go somewhere quickly, this boat can get you there in time for dinner.

"To give you an idea, you could get from the South of France to Corsica in under four hours, which is very fast.”

Rocket can sleep up to 12 guests and provide space for 11 full-time crew including a captain, chief officer, bosun, two deck hands, three stewardesses, two engineers and a chef. There are also two crew members on a chase boat.

After her stint in Dubai, Rocket will be heading to the Mediterranean, stopping first in Barcelona.

"We will travel around Oman, up past Egypt, through the Suez Canal and then up into the Mediterranean," Mr Gall says. "The journey will take about 20 days."

Updated: March 31, 2019 10:23 AM

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