Holiday tip: hire a presidential yacht for a cruise on the Med Featured

The Paolucci has been superbly restored in a three-year operation
by 06 May 2010

The Paolucci recently left its moorings in the port of Fiumicino and sailed away on the first voyage in its new lease of life. Its history goes back to 1970, when it was launched following a commission from the Italian navy, who required a fast boat for providing medical services during sea rescue operations. It was later converted into a yacht for use by the President of the Republic of Italy. Today it is available as a luxury cruise yacht for charters in the Mediterranean, providing services that include an award-winning chef, a discreet and constantly-available butler, a personal trainer, yoga sessions, a professional masseuse, baby-sitters and hostesses, and a professional crew, all guaranteeing a high level of comfort on a yacht that represents a fragment of Italian history.

The accommodation concept is to offer totally personalized service, so that each individual guest has the chance to customize the cruise according to his or her desires. The activities available on board include jetskis, windsurfing, snorkelling, diving and fishing.
Italian shipline owner Giordano Fabiani heard about the Paolucci five years ago, and he decided to purchase it and restore it to the sophisticated quality that had hallmarked it during its golden years as Presidential yacht. Restoration began in summer 2006 at the Cantieri Navali del Tevere, at Fiumicino, near Rome, and work was performed by the ETA company, specialists in refitting yachts.
The structural parts of the yacht, including superstructure and decks, were carefully restored using the original materials. Some areas were completely redesigned and modernized, such as the engine room (to which a third engine was added), electrical, water and air-conditioning plant, crew accommodation, and electronic navigation equipment.

Interiors were refitted by another company, Castagna, from Erba, who treated the staterooms with a modern, though classic and absolutely hand-crafted design approach. Walls are panelled in light beech for naturally bright interiors, while floors and all furnishings are in matt Burma teak, a valuable Indian timber.
The main saloon and dining room take up much of the first deck, with cleanly-honed furnishings that express quintessentially Italian design and practicality. The subdivision of the master and guest cabins has remained unchanged. As well as the master cabin under the main deck, the Paolucci has room for another ten people in three VIP double guestrooms and in another guest cabin with single beds. All cabins have en suite bathroom, air conditioning, and B&O audio and video system.

On deck, facilities for enjoying the cruise include two sunbathing areas, one at the bows and one on the 80 square-metre flybridge, which is furnished with special settees with self-draining upholstery. The command bridge is clad in dark timber and leather, while the upper bridge has an open-air helm position.
Giordano Fabiani, current owner of the Paolucci, says, "It was an exciting challenge. The conversion required the renovation of the interiors and a great deal of work on structures, but the most difficult task was to conserve the yacht's unique elegance while incorporating state-of-the-art technology and architectural features. I am confident that we have succeeded in restoring the Paolucci to its original splendour in its transformation into a luxury yacht."

The Paolucci remains faithful to its thoroughbred performance as a fast yacht. It now has three CRM engines, each delivering 1,650 HP, enabling the yacht to reach a maximum speed of 32 knots and a cruising speed of 28 knots. This will ensure that the trips from one evocative Mediterranean location to another will be as exciting and as unforgettable as the relaxing moments at anchor.

For charter information:
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Tel. +39 02 32951264, +39 338 8540078

Technical specifications
Model: Picchioti 90
Boatyard: Picchiotti, Viareggio
Launch: 1970
Refitting: 2006-2009
Flag: Italy
Construction: triple cross-planked mahogany hull
Powerplant: 3 CRM 18-cylinder engines (2000), each 1,650 HP
Length: 30 m
Beam: 7.5 m
Draught: 2.0 m
Max speed: 33 knots
Cruising speed: 28 knots
Range: 280 nautical miles

Technical specifications (continued)
Standard displacement: 110 metric tons
Gross displacement: 125 metric tons
Fuel: 9000 litres
Fresh water: 2000 litres, plus desalination plant
Tenders: two 40 HP, 4.3 m length tenders
Number of guests: 10
Crew: 5/6
Accommodation: 1 master cabin, 3 VIP cabins, 1 double cabin, 1 single cabin for guest staff, 1 captain cabin, saloon, dining room, flybridge, solarium