Italy’s Sanlorenzo shipyard has achieved two news items in a single launch: a brand-new flagship, and a first-ever steel displacement hull design. Not too shabby for a builder that, from 1958 until 1985, built wooden boats and nothing else.
The 44 Steel, as the new 144-foot flagship is known, is a departure from the builder’s SL line (62 to 108 feet) that bears an exterior design resemblance to the SD line (92 to 122 feet). Sanlorenzo itself describes the new 44 Steel as being designed “in perfect continuity” with the latter two semi-displacement composite models, while introducing the steel hull and aluminum superstructure. Since the SD line and the new 44 Steel are both built in the company’s Viareggo Division, a fair amount of idea cross-pollination is likely to take place.
Sanlorenzo did release some details about what’s inside this new beauty, including a central tunnel that runs the length of the yacht beneath the bottom deck. The tunnel houses systems such as the stabilizer fins and bow thruster as well as service areas such as the laundry room, freezers, and refrigeration—all in a space tall enough for crew to walk through. The tunnel also offers engine-room access, so the engineer can move from that area into the tunnel and back without disturbing guests one level up.
Also of interest is the design of the 44 Steel’s tender garage. Instead of being all the way aft with a door that opens from the yacht’s transom, the garage is pushed farther forward and accessed via a door in the hull’s starboard side. In the aft space where many other motoryachts would have tender garages, the 44 Steel has what Sanlorenzo calls a “beach club” for guests. It includes a gymnasium, bathroom, and oversized swim platform, all of which is accessible from either the cockpit or the main saloon.
The 44 Steel is powered by twin CAT 3512Bs that push her to a top speed of 17 knots and a cruising speed of 15 knots. The yacht’s gross tonnage is 499 tons—keeping her just beneath the limit that would require construction to SOLAS regulations.