Refit: R/S Eden
(Ex Fulmara, Paget, Niki I, Luisa II, Carmac III, Leonore, Janidore)
“A real delight of timeless leisurely yachting” — that was the description used by the owner of R/S Eden, the classic 1930s cruising yacht which has just taken to the water again after a comprehensive two-year refit masterminded by RMD. One of the most ambitious rebuild projects in recent times, the stunning result is testimony to the painstaking attention given to every aspect of the restoration; from rebuilding her 650 hp Caterpillar engines to the redesign of her upper deck and new bow.
The yacht began life as Janidore in 1930 at the Defoe Boat and Motor Works of Bay City, Michigan in the USA and at the time boasted some of the most modern marine equipment of her time. The original design was the work of Mr. John H Wells Inc of New York although her home was on the west coast of America in the port of San Francisco.
A succession of owners sailed the yacht under a series of names along the Pacific coast, before heading further afield to the Caribbean, America’s eastern seaboard and later on into the Mediterranean. Like many other large pleasure yachts in that period she was requisitioned by the US Navy during the Second World War and served as an auxiliary vessel in domestic waters before being returned to her then owner after hostilities came to an end.
In 1966 the vessel was completely remodelled by Merrill-Stevens in Miami and re-launched as Niki 1, showing off her new profile in the form of a more contemporary swept bow. The yacht again passed through the hands of a number of owners, before becoming Fulmara in 1991.
Purchased by her current owner in 2005 in a state of some disrepair, Fulmara spent the best part of the next two years being completely rebuilt at Neta Marine in Bodrum, Turkey, with RMD overseeing the work as interior and exterior stylists, while working with a team from across Europe, including Axel Vervoordt in Belgium. The brief was extensive, including the requirements of adding an owner’s office and extended aft deck, improving visibility in the dining room, the capability of meeting MCA standards, and generally of returning the vessel to her original classic 1930s style, paying special attention to her original features and aiming to retain as many of them as possible – all while bringing her navigation and communication systems into the 21st century.
Despite the many surprises that emerged as the refit got underway, the owner retained his clear vision of the beautiful yacht that was to emerge and never wavered in his commitment to the project.
Summer 2007 finally saw the owner’s foresight rewarded as the renewed yacht, now renamed R/S Eden, left her shed as a handsome motor vessel of 49.5 metres overall (excluding the bowsprit which, when included, takes her to a total of 52.5 metres), recreating the elegance of her 1930s heritage but with the full array of modern amenities and equipment discreetly incorporated into her overall structure. A transatlantic cruising range makes her a highly capable vessel offering extended and independent cruising to her owner and charterers.
It might be said that R/S Eden has been restored to a condition even superior to her former styles. A clipper bow and bowsprit have been added and her entire interior and superstructure have benefited from a total redesign. Her hull was almost entirely rebuilt with nearly all the frames replaced, but the keel was retained as was the oxter plate; two original and important components of the yacht whose retention helped ensure that her ‘soul’ was not lost in the reconstruction. Her bulwarks were also reduced in height in order to improve the views from the main deck. Meanwhile, on-board systems have been successfully modernised with the installation of state-of-the-art radar and satellite communications. Her two masts have been reinstated and given new functions. The forward mast supports radar and satcom aerials and has a boom that functions as a davit for the launch and recovery of R/S Eden’s two sailing dinghies, while the aft mast also has a boom from which awnings can be suspended.
Below decks, guest accommodation retains the original overall design with one VIP cabin on the main deck and five more on the lower deck, providing accommodation for ten guests in total. The owner’s cabin is forward on the lower deck and features classic 1930s brass portholes and a gleaming mahogany floor. The saloon also boasts mahogany panelling complete with a functioning wood-burning fireplace.
The upper deck has space dedicated to a splendid office or day room for the owner, a captain’s cabin and wheelhouse. Above is a comfortable sundeck with spa pool and al fresco dining area, plus stowage for two RIB tenders.
Since her launch R/S Eden has already attracted the attention of designers and yacht-lovers alike, and starred in the August edition of Boat International magazine. The winter of 2007 sees her lying in Monaco, with an extensive programme of cruising in the Mediterranean and Red Sea planned for 2008.
The charter agent for R/S Eden is Edmiston & Company, contactable on +44 (0) 207 495 5151 or via email at email@example.com