Turnkey yacht construction is convenient and makes sense, but there’s also a lot to be said for letting owners personalize things.
Yacht buyers are attracted for a number of reasons to shipyards offering turnkey, semi-custom construction. There’s no need to spec out mechanical systems or deck hardware, for example. The builder tackles the task. The same goes for sourcing safety gear that meets classification society requirements, and even finding navigation and communications units. Furthermore, a semi-custom yacht’s design and engineering are proven over the course of a few launches. This lends peace of mind to owners who aren’t quite comfortable with the idea of a one-off.
Of course, one-offs do present plenty of opportunity for personalization. And while some semi-custom shipyards claim personalization is possible, it may not be much more than choosing, say, mahogany versus cherry wood for paneling.
Christensen Shipyards is among the few that balances the best of both worlds. It does this via its Custom Series, which counts seven deliveries to date. The newest, the 162-foot Remember When, has some tried-and-true design and engineering elements. But she also has some pretty particular specifications sprung from the imagination of her owner.
That owner is John Rosatti, an experienced yachtsman who has acquired everything from Cigarette boats to custom megayachts. Having purchased the 157-foot Christensen Liquidity on the brokerage market about six years ago, he was impressed with the yard’s fit and finish work. Its emphasis on fiberglass construction meant lower maintenance costs than aluminum- or steel-hulled yachts, too. Rosatti further liked how the general arrangement of Liquidity (which he re-christened Nice N Easy) suited the frequent cruising and entertaining he did in the Med, the Caribbean, and the U.S. East Coast.
Given these satisfactions, Remember When doesn’t reinvent the proverbial wheel when it comes to design and construction. She features five guest staterooms belowdecks and a main-deck, full-beam master suite. She also features a high-gloss black walnut interior that’s strikingly similar to that of Liquidity, since Rosatti was happy with the look. (On a related note, all cabinetry and marble work aboard Remember When was crafted by Christensen’s in-house shops.) But she does embody a few notable departures.
The biggest comes in terms of performance. Rosatti had read about Dynamic Positioning, a computer-controlled station-keeping system employed in commercial and military vessels. In brief, it keeps a ship in a set position and heading by activating thrusters and the propellers. Rosatti inquired whether Remember When could be fitted with this type of setup. The yard’s engineering team researched possibilities and teamed with Ocean Yacht Systems to tailor a similar concept for the yacht. (It’s important to note that Remember When does not feature a Dynamic Positioning system specifically, mostly due to its cost.) Ocean Yacht Systems, based in England, was chosen because it customizes hydraulics, thrusters, and other systems for yachts, both power and sail. The setup aboard Remember When therefore features 100-hp bow and stern thrusters linked to the GPS. If so desired, the system can also push the yacht along at three knots. The stern thruster is retractable once the yacht hits five knots under engine power, to prevent accidental damage while cruising.
Speaking of cruising, another custom touch was made to make trips more enjoyable. Rosatti requested a longer flying bridge to accommodate toys, but not just watertoys – he owns Harley-Davidson motorcycles as well as a Vespa scooter, and wanted to use them just as much as the more typical PWCs.
The longer length of that deck benefits friends and family, too. The starboard-side bar, nicely shaded by the hardtop, lets nine people sit alongside one another. More guests can sit on the U-shaped settee opposite, with even more soaking in the hot tub fully forward. For everyone’s convenience, a day head is tucked into the arch by the bar.
Remember When has covered a good deal of coastline since delivery last year. She headed down the West Coast from Christensen’s Washington State yard to visit Mexico and Costa Rica, among other places, for the summer and early autumn. Next it was through the Panama Canal to head to Fort Lauderdale in time for the international boat show in October. Remember When was formally christened at a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County in November, with Rosatti and his three children doing the honors. As a native New Yorker and a fan of the annual Fourth of July fireworks display in the city’s harbor, Rosatti and Remember When should be in the Northeast come summertime.