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Feature: Abeking & Rasmussen 257' Superyacht "Eminence"

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Feature: Abeking & Rasmussen 257' Superyacht "Eminence"

Abeking & Rasmussen 257' Superyacht "Eminence"
Hermann Schaedla's Swansong

Review by Chuck Gnaegy

To truly portray her illustrious name, “Eminence”, this yacht must clearly soar
head and shoulders above the fleet in design and performance; through build and production,
as well as that crucially important measure of ‘eclat – Pedigree. Beauty, of course, is a given;
as well as archetypical excellence. Here also, gratefully sanctioned, is an acquiescent nod to the
Lady’s long-standing forebears, which have held a leading position in yachtdom for, yes, a Century.

Located along the Weser River in Lemwerder, Germany, yacht builders George Abeking and Henry Rasmussen founded the shipyard in 1907. Since then, A&R has produced over 6,400 vessels including naval ships, SWATH's, sailboats and motoryachts. Now in the builder’s 101st year, YachtForums is proud to unveil this fine-art presentation of German engineering with our tribute to “Eminence”, the builder’s largest yacht ever. She surely rates a Royal title of some Majesty for her in-house naval architecture by Abeking & Rasmussen; with interior and exterior styling by Andrew Langton, of Reymond Langton Design.
This impressive, striking side view of Eminence’s rakish steel hull, her sleek 257’ w/ 10’10” draft emphasizes her seaworthy, ocean-challenging concept. Cruising comfort and style are paramount in the builder’s plan; while the yacht is fashioned to offer outstanding performance in all conditions. Decisively engineered, her flared bow is a concise stratagem to manage whatever the sea may deliver. The builder’s in-house naval architects are long accustomed to strategies for all-weather challenges in their own North Atlantic, as well as more hospitable, sun-filled party climes; the Med and the Carib. While the names Rasmussen and Abeking derive from ancient Norwegian stock, the builder’s history also includes vessels for the German government; Coast Guard, rescue, mine-hunters, etc. Its contemporary private, pleasure vessels are second to none.
As the yacht’s immediate head-on profile emphasizes her massive prow, featuring Steen anchoring and mooring equipment; this angle doesn’t necessarily reveal that we are viewing a highly ranked, 5-deck personal yacht. This handsome Lady also flaunts, with her steel hull and aluminum superstructure – Gross Tonnage 2,054; a Class and LY2 operating compliance, w/ Lloyd’s 100A1, SSC Yacht (P), Mono G6, LMC, UMS, MCA Ly2; ready and able, at her owner’s whim, to traverse the world thanks to her 2x CAT 3516 Series 2 Main Engines, developing 1492 kW each2 @1600 rpm; affording her a 6,000 nm range. While her foredeck appears bare of certain add-ons -- such as tenders; they are readily stored under her foredeck as well as her stern garage, which we’ll tour later – the strategy leaves her upper decks nicely uncluttered.
This softly glimmering night view readily illustrates the massiveness of the 5-decker Eminence. From the height of her fanciful mast to the stepped and lighted decks; we begin this view from topsides on her sun deck, to inside. From here the fully enclosed “lift” elevator, delivers its party-goers to her four lower decks. Her glorious night lighting is the welcome product of her 3X CAT C 18 412 kW main gensets; each running @1500 rpm. She also sports an Atlas 250 Kva Hi-Power Ultra shore power converter.
In full daylight or after-hours darkness, this glorious sun deck is a wonderful, magnetic gathering place. Spacious, beautiful, so well designed the partying crowds will always know where the action is. Nicely arranged with awnings for the afternoon sun, the yacht also sports three separate areas for gatherings. One, at forward, is situated between two circular glass enclosures. A second circular settee allows wide views forward and across the beam. A third proffers the elevator, which reaches below decks. Still another area contains a shower, next to the large pool, awaiting the throng of guests who love the water, yet gather to party high above the glistening salty sea.
Aft on the Bridge deck, her airy and spacious layout features the ship’s extramural, plein-air dining arrangement. Perfect for afternoon chats, scrabble matches, or anytime dining. Outdoor furniture, with slatted seating, features delicately entwined metallic rods, adding to her forever-summer feel; while overhead her huge circular awning provides shelter from the afternoon sun. Bleached teak decking is matched on the nearby stairs, up to the towering sun deck.
Here on the all-business wheel-house deck, with its non-indulgent, completely total-nav disposition, Eminence provides excellent design in the broad scope presented. For onlookers, a spacious, brown leather, upholstered couch/settee welcomes spectators, seated before a round walnut table, booth style. Facing the fully-functioning Helm, a pair of adjustable Captain’s chairs have uninterrupted views of all instruments. Within easy attention are each of the ship’s manually operated components. This beam-width cluster includes a Schottel SPJ Azimuth Stern Thruster, of which the Captain -- with his saltiest smile -- insists will keep him out of unspecified trouble. That simple “savior” is an emergency electrical generator, able to propel the ship at 4 knots for a lengthy distance.
A close-up of the vertical-windowed bridge-wheelhouse reveals the open, easily monitored view of five quickly scanned screens, which signal navigational information, as well as engine performance. In addition, lighted prompts cover all information for fire and emergency systems, fuel usage and transfer, watermakers, steering gear, heaters, plus switchboards for every communication mode. On-board device managers oversee functional procedures of steering gear, circulation pumps, props, galley equipment and entertainment systems. Also performance-checked are radio/TV/movies, which are available in all staterooms.
Linked with the bridge deck high over Eminence’s five decks, her Sky Lounge features a full service bar as well as a gaming section. Simple comfort, mingling, and conversation are the major pastimes here, providing deep-cushioned easy chairs and couches; plus enough tables for several varying card games in service at the same time. If the crowd isn’t testing each other’s mettle at ‘Gentlemen’s Club’ poker, scrabble, or prompting the ever-challenging bridge mavens; the Skylounge provides plenty of seating for unlimited conversation as well.
Another section of the Sky Lounge glitters with soaring glass walls, modified with dashing, softened tones of rich woods – madrona burl, walnut-stained flame mahogany, Asian Makassar ebony. Then as a modification of its occasionally flamboyant wood flair, the interior designers introduced splashes of white, in upholstery fabrics for furniture and wall coverings, plus thick spun and woven carpeting. On the balance of space and corners, they delighted the eye-view with unusual countertops, decorative, contemporary touches in glass alcoves.
The view of the main salon offers a certain voluptuousness apparently sought by the decorators. Yet the flavor is fresh and bright, perhaps slightly art deco, with maybe a suggestion of an expensive European Gentlemen’s club, seemingly via a James Bond cinema. With deep browns versus soft whites; perfectly rounded shapes and lush tables, one can almost catch a hint, the flavor of a fine cigar’s aura; the tang of a very dry martini; “shaken, not stirred.”
Main Salon; looking forward to the cinema...
Eminence’s main dining room, seating 14, continues her extravagant epicurean flair, sporting gold/silver splashes in her spherical, beam-wide banquet hall. This upper deck also sports its own, singular bar. However, its commanding advantage is floor-to-ceiling clear glass windows, a full 270 degrees of oceanic world views. Outdoor enchantment; marvelous picturing of unmitigated ocean magic. Lady Eminence tenders this enormously visual presentation area, including access doors; which in turn may offer delightfully pure ocean breezes in 90° cross-currents.
Also gracefully awaiting within Her Lady’s enormously engaging vitals, a wide screen cinema with sumptuous, luxury seating. It harkens to 30’s style, featuring red leather walls; art-deco carpet; plus the most modern surround-sound and fine-tuned projection. It’s entertainment for the entire passenger list. Her bailiwick of entertaining choices may reach as far back or forward as the mind can conceive; to the ancient, silent films of Charlie Chaplin’s fetching “Little Tramp” or today; the latest imaginary exploits of far-away Deep-Galaxy travel, and beyond.
Never one to miss the tantalizing excitement of business ventures – on land or sea -- for guests who need to keep in contact, wherever the Yacht may be; Eminence provides this well-situated office, completely packaged and wired (or wireless) for the most modern aura of world-wide competing in this age of commerce. In fact, this special compartment includes a shower and settee which also opens to form a full-size bed, so that a private secretary can be elegantly accommodated, 24-7. Ah-h, Business; You can take it with you!

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