Engelberg – the Life Aquatic

The customised Limited Editions Amels 180 is an alluring combination of power and practicality with stunning attention to detail in design, particularly in the ocean-themed interiors. Anthony Twibill is enthralled by this elaborate and original new superyacht.

Engelberg is the latest delivery of Amels Limited Editions 180, recently launched in mid-2013 by the esteemed Dutch superyacht yard. My first sight of her was in May last year whilst visiting Amels in Holland, with the yacht still hidden away inside giant sheds as the finishing touches were applied. Not yet christened at the time, Engelberg’s resplendent charcoal hull, offset by the moon grey superstructure of Tim Heywood’s design and enticing glimpses of a warm and inviting interior, set the scene for the full tour aboard that followed during September’s 2013 Monaco Yacht Show.

All levels of Engelberg offer elegant yet relaxed spaces for a suitable mix of work and play.

Named after a towering Swiss mountain (berg) frequented by the owner, this eye-catching 55-metre (180-foot) superyacht is without a doubt the most customised Limited Editions Amels 180 built to date. It’s a concept aimed at delivering to owners a brand new, world-class superyacht in about half the time and reducing costs by 15 per cent compared to a full custom build – with the surety and safety of being constructed on a certified, sea-proven naval engineering platform.

A high tech bridge featuring the very latest technology ensures maximum safety and efficiency.

Whilst the yacht is not a custom build, many of the stunningly different features and artistic details seen throughout Engelberg are the unusual and original ideas of the owner in collaboration with his interior designer. As such, the yacht is a great demonstration of the myriad possibilities for customising the interior and exterior spaces aboard, within the bounds of the proven hull, superstructure and engineering designed by Amels for their 180 Limited Editions.

On the water Engelberg appears to be a unique custom build, an impression aided by the stunning dark grey paintwork of its hull, accented by a bold stripe of Hermès signature orange running the length of the waterline. With this most individual appearance she would make an impressive entrance at any new port or marina, quite unlike the many ‘me too’ big white boats cruising the Mediterranean.


Colourful sculptures of glass and stunning artworks were the vision of nterior designer Enzo Enea; folding balconies, transform the indoor/outdoor ambience of the main saloon at the touch of a button.


It’s when you step aboard, however, that you fully appreciate that the proverbial ‘devil is in the detail’. This yacht is clearly an original vision; one where the design has been boldly envisaged and executed to meet the owner’s dreams and his day-to-day needs when at sea.

Engelberg’s interior is at once sophisticated, exciting and unique. Neutral palettes of natural luxury are blended with bright splashes of Hermès orange displayed with abandon throughout the length and breadth of this stunning yacht, making a striking impression. Adding to this visual spectacle, the scene is accented by original artwork of colourful sculptures of glass, original paintings and extraordinary mosaics depicting a sea of life, most impressive of all in the guest suites and beach club. The mesmerising interiors, finished without visible fault in even the finest details, are the satisfying result of a stunning design by Enzo Enea, who drafted the interior vision for Engelberg, inspired by the Mediterranean environment in which the yacht would be primarily cruising.

Marine motif mosaic in the Beach Club.

As the owner is a successful businessman, advanced onboard personal communication systems allow for uninterrupted business and global contact when cruising anywhere in the world. The presence of digital communications and computer technology is prevalent wherever you go aboard the yacht; from the office – where it would certainly be expected – to the master stateroom, even throughout entertaining and outdoor areas, most impressively demonstrated in the unique aft deck ‘boardroom at sea’. Clearly, staying in touch with the world at large was a design imperative for the owner of Engelberg.

Aft deck boardroom and dining table.

As a 55-metre yacht of considerable volume, as one would expect there is generous accommodation on board for up to 14 guests, provided by the owner’s master stateroom on the main deck and four double guest cabins with ensuite bathrooms on the lower deck, all luxuriously and individually appointed.


Crew accommodation consisting of eight cabins, including the captain’s cabin, for up to 13 (+2) crewmembers is also provided.

The master ensuite.

The owner’s stateroom is located fully forward on the main deck in a vast space that offers complete seclusion and autonomy from the rest of the yacht – as is the current trend and owner preference aboard large yachts today. Surrounding it are numerous hull windows providing exceptional views. Adding to the light and airy atmosphere is a fold-out private balcony, in which the wall of the suite extends out to the sea, transforming itself into an idyllic private deck for breakfast or dining for two, perched over the ocean in the open air.

The owner’s stateroom is fully forward on the main deck and includes a king-sized bed and full office, fold-out private balcony, Jacuzzi and dressing room.

The master comprises all the ultimate luxuries afloat including a king bed, dressing room, bathroom and magnificent Jacuzzi bath, and – most unusual in a master suite – a full office located directly behind the bed itself and trimmed in Hermès orange leather.

Down one level are four double guest cabins, all with ensuite facilities, and each individual in their theme and décor. Mirroring their marine environment, each cabin has been styled with a superbly executed aquatic life theme with images of dolphins, turtles, sharks, and manta rays adorning the walls.

Each cabin has been styled with a superbly executed aquatic life theme.

With the Mediterranean and its coastlines as his inspiration, designer Enzo Enea has created
an interior that reflects the landscape in a fusion of nature and design. On the main deck in the saloon and dining areas the theme is one of natural sophistication with neutral, earthy hues and the use of timber, fabrics and leathers to add texture and context. The signature Hermès orange is ever present, if subtle, wherever one casts an eye, in this case as the border accent of the deep blue sea of carpet surrounding the eight-place dining setting. Although formal in layout, the dining area opens on either side onto folding balconies, transforming the indoor/outdoor ambience of the main saloon at the touch of a button, allowing guests to enjoy ultimate foodservice with spectacular views and sea breeze.

vintage touch

 A high tech bridge featuring the
very latest technology ensures maximum
safety and efficiency.
The bridge deck features fully
restored yet original vintage signal
lights as a nostalgic conversation starter.

Although formal in layout, the dining area opens on either side onto folding balconies.

Surely one of the most unusual furnishing statements aboard Engelberg, however, is on the main deck aft of the saloon.

In a signature masterstroke of powerful design, the aft deck is dominated by a central coffee table, replete with world map inlay, surrounded by an audience of swivel chairs finished in gloss timber trimmed with that irrepressible orange, curving up to a master seat for the owner at the head of the table. Leaving none in doubt as to who is in command, this ‘seat of power’ comes complete with a comprehensive communications terminal, and is positioned so as to gaze directly aft over the ship’s wake. Surely, this is the supreme ‘al fresco corporate board room’ yet seen aboard a superyacht – and if there was not such a term before, Engelberg ensures there most certainly is now.

The bridge deck features a lushly furnished saloon and impressive, natural coffee table.

Up a deck to the bridge deck, French balconies complement the open plan arrangement of a lushly furnished saloon, themed in chocolate and (you guessed it) orange. Plush saloon lounges are casually arranged facing a cinema-size flatscreen display and surrounding a magnificent natural tree section serving as a coffee table that’s no doubt been a century or more in the growing! Casual elegance with that ever-present Hermès orange adds some tangy zest to the atmosphere.

The bridge deck includes a Steinway & Sons baby grand piano and navigation station.

Harmonising the lounge area, a Steinway & Sons baby grand (auto-play capable) sits off to port opposite a casual office area, while the aft bridge deck is dedicated to outdoor entertaining and relaxation for many a family member or guests. An outdoor timber dining table extends the casual feel of the bridge deck saloon, accompanied by casual seating and coffee tables by the large sofa aft.

Of special note is the vintage ambience lent to this sheltered aft bridge deck by a set of fully restored, though authentic, original signal lights. It’s a wonderful touch of nautical history that’s bound to start many a nostalgic conversation.


For the sun seeker, an immense sundeck is laid out on the top deck providing lounging and social areas, conceived for day and night. Plush circular seats aft lead to a long, low table, seating area and bar. Between the bar and the Jacuzzi and sun-lounging area forward of the lounge area, a glassed sliding door (of lightweight carbon fibre) can be closed against the prevailing breeze, which blows from the bow whether underway or swinging at anchor. Alternatively and just as practically, the glass doors serve to separate the outdoor forward area of sun worshippers from the covered lounge and bar area, creating two distinctly separate vibes or entertaining spaces on the top deck.

Between the bar and the Jacuzzi and sun-lounging area forward of the lounge area, a glassed sliding door (of lightweight carbon fibre) can be closed against the prevailing breeze.

The forward sundeck is in itself a delightful space, featuring numerous sun beds arrayed on teak decks surrounding the large circular Jacuzzi. At its prow is yet another unusual appointment aboard this yacht – a curved, cushioned swivel chair, positioned fully forward so as to look over the bow. The occupant of this chair has the most amazing view over the sunbathing area on the bridge deck below and beyond that over the sharp bow to the distant horizon. The crew call it the ‘best seat in the house’ and I’m sure it’s precisely that if you’re lucky enough to plant yourself there, cocktail in hand, whilst sedately cruising into a new anchorage at sunset.

Plush circular seats aft lead to a long, low table, seating area and bar.

And if you have jet-setting guests arriving at sea, this extra large sundeck can even double as a ‘touch and go’ helipad.

The fun aboard Engelberg continues much closer to sea level in the quite extraordinary Beach Club. If you remember just three things from being aboard Engelberg it will be the signature presence of Hermès orange, the aft deck ‘boardroom’ and the extraordinary mosaic work adorning the walls of the Beach Club.

Intricate sea life mosaics ensure the beach club breathes fun and excitement.

Intricate sea life motif mosaic work ensures this beach club breathes fun and excitement, for adults and children alike. It is comprehensively appointed, complete with hammam, walk-in shower, and easy storage for a collection of seabobs, scuba and watersports gear. Toys aboard ship include tenders, wave runners, an inflatable pool and supersize waterslide popular with yacht charterers, and even a game fishing chair that can be affixed to the stern, conceivably making Engelberg one of the largest game fishers in the world!

Guests can easily reach the sea or the marina outside the Beach Club via a custom-built swim platform, which hydraulically folds off the main stern platform and extends either down into the sea or straight up to the quay, depending on which way you are headed.

Such versatility and ease indeed, and in the world of crafting a unique superyacht from a proven platform, that really is the name of the game and one in which Engelberg has excelled.


MODEL Limited Editions Amels 180 DECKS Teak
BUILDER Amels ENGINE 2 x MTU 2000 M70 16V
year of build 2013 SPEED Max Speed: 15.5 knots / Cruising speed: 13 knots
country of build Holland FUEL CAPACITY 115,000 litres
designer Tim Heywood RANGE 4,500 nm
naval architect  Amels FRESHWATER capacity 17,000 litres
 Interior designer  Enzo Enea / Focus Yacht Design Generators 2x 155kW Northern Lights M1066H                       1 x 80kW Northern Lights M1066T
 Owner ’s project manager  Ocean Independence BOW thrusters 110 kW
LOA  55 m / 180’ 5” Owner & guest berths Up to 14 Up to 14
LWL  49.65 m / 164 Crew Up to 16
BEAM   9.4 m / 30’ 10” FLAG British
DRAFT  Min: 3.35 m / 10’ 11”/ Max: 4.9 m / 16’ 9” Tenders 1 x Yachtwerft Meyer custom; 1 x Pascoe MOB
Superstructure  Aluminium


Source Ocean magazine #53
Photos www.amels-holland.com