Prana Breathes New Life into Indonesia Charter Market
Inspired by the Sanskrit word for life force, Prana breathes new life into Indonesia’s luxury charter market with nine suites and 900sqm of living space, as Michael Howorth discovers
If proof was needed that traditionally built craft are playing an increasingly significant part in Asia’s luxury charter market, then you need look no further than Prana by Atzaro, launched in the middle of 2018.
The Atzaro Group, whose other ventures include a luxury hotel in Ibiza, took great pride in both the interior and exterior details of this majestic ironwood and teak phinisi that was built by Yacht Sourcing in southeast Sulawesi – on the beach, just as her cargo-carrying ancestors were.
With a design inspired by the ancient boat-building traditions of the seafaring Bugis tribe, this two-masted ketch was constructed using those same time-honoured techniques. The yacht took 21 months to complete, from the laying of the keel, hull and bulkheads to finishing the superstructure, decks and soft furnishing.
Designed with luxury and space in mind, this remarkable phinisi superyacht offers guests comfort and facilities across more than 900sqm of useable space on four decks.
Guest accommodation comprises an astonishing nine suites, each with its own private en-suite bathroom. Fully soundproofed, the elegant suites are decorated with sumptuous vintage fabrics and contemporary linens in a sophisticated palette.
Wellness is a key element in the Prana by Atzaro ethos, so the yacht even has its own yoga deck and two spa therapists to administer treatments outside, in-room or inside the peaceful Atelier de Beauté, using Anne Sémonin products.
Her charter appeal is enhanced by the immense social areas, including formal dining both indoors and outside, while the yoga terrace, a dedicated spa, a watersports platform and a cinema under the stars also help make her one of the most in-demand charter yachts in eastern Indonesia.
A SOURCE OF PRIDE
Prana is the Central Agency flagship of Voyage by Yacht Sourcing, the builder’s charter division, which hired and trained the crew, and manages the boat’s day-to-day operations. Voyage won Best Asia- Based Charter Company (Phinisi) at the 2019 Christofle Yacht Style Awards in Phuket due in large to the popularity of the new vessel.
The charter company’s impressive range of phinisis also included Lamima, Zen, Silolona, Alexa, Adelaar and Samata, plus motor yachts including the 50m Kudanil Explorer. However, Prana holds a special place in the company’s heart for obvious reasons.
“Prana is the biggest yacht we’ve built and is a special project because of our ongoing relationship with Atzaro. And because we manage the crew and the boat, we make sure Prana and the experience on board reflects Yacht Sourcing’s principles,” said Boum Senous, co- founder of Yacht Sourcing and its Director of Operations.
“We brought a lot of modern engineering to a traditional design, so focused a lot on fuel economy, waste management – even the types of toiletries used – to reduce the impact. I also like the fact that some of the revenue will be used to help replant trees in Sulawesi. All of us are committed to growing this industry in Indonesia in the right way.”
At 411GT, Prana is larger than most luxury phinisis and measures over 55m overall in length including her elegant bowsprit and overhanging stern, yet this flat-bottomed craft draws just 3.7m.
Admittedly, her massive, 11.6m beam gives her a ‘fat lady’ look on the water and her big boxy accommodation makes her look a little top heavy as she sails along, but step on board and you’ll soon see that she’s is built for comfort, as you wander through the well-appointed interior.
To be a phinisi, the craft should carry seven sails, only two of which are carried on the mizzen or aft mast.
Made of white cotton duck canvas, the sails are now often more for show than action, but fortunately the single Yanmar 850 engine and four-bladed propeller push Prana along at a handsome eight knots, which is fast enough around this part of the world.
We enjoyed a week-long charter in Raja Ampat, a remote archipelago covering more than 40,000sqkm and featuring over 1,500 rambling Indonesian islets. Famous for their Jurassic-like beauty, these islands are set among cays, coral reefs and shoals like rough jewels in a cerulean sea.
Located off the northwest tip of the island of Papua in the far east of Indonesia, they lie at the point where the Pacific becomes the Indian Ocean. The resulting currents stir up nutrient-rich water in the tropical climate, nurturing magnificent coral reefs and unparalleled marine life.
SPACE, LUXURY AND VIEWS GALORE
Prana is a sensational choice for a large group of family or friends, with accommodation for up to 20 guests in its nine lavish cabins, all air-conditioned.
On the upper deck behind the bridge is the sumptuous Batavia master suite, with its super king-size bed, double wardrobe, lounge and writing desk. Huge wrap-around, floor-to-ceiling windows open out on to its spacious 20sqm private deck overlooking the stern. The en-suite bathroom features a double rain shower and twin vanities.
Also on the upper deck is the 37sqm Uluwatu VIP suite, which we occupied and has a super king-size bed, dramatically large windows on both sides and an en-suite bathroom. We were very comfortable living here!
As if more lounging area is needed, forward of the Captain’s cabin and the wheelhouse are four large king-size daybeds.
To starboard are the stairs up to the yoga deck, which is the equivalent of the sundeck and can also be converted into a cinema under the stars. Oversize sun loungers up here catch the ocean breeze and offer the best view of the passing scenery.
The main deck has a vast open-plan saloon with an impressive dining table for entertaining. There’s also al fresco dining for up to 18 on two long tables outside on the foredeck, which also features large daybeds, ideal for lounging day or night.
There’s also another guest suite, Ambon, on the main deck, while at the aft end is a water sports centre equipped for diving, snorkelling, kayaking, paddleboarding, waterskiing and wakeboarding.
There are six double suites on the lower deck featuring private en- suite bathrooms, mini fridges, Smart TV and sound systems, although quite what the TVs are used for, no one on our charter ever found out!
Each deck features oversized gangways and large daybeds scattered around all the open areas, offering abundant places to retreat and relax.
A WINNING COMBINATION
Prana is a winner, not only in terms of yacht design but also in terms of crew and activities. The chef, Fauzi, creates Western and Asian fusion dishes with fresh local ingredients, paired with fine wines from the extensive cellar selection.
All are served by discreet staff, either outside under the stars, in the cool of the air-conditioned dining room or even on a white-sand beach, Robinson-Crusoe style, for true barefoot luxury.
After dinner, guests can relax at the open-air cinema or indulge in a pampering spa treatment. In the morning, as the wind catches the sails, take a yoga class on the top deck. Sun salutations will never be the same again.
The 18-man crew includes a Cruise Director, Dive Instructor, several chefs, stewards and expert spa therapists; all on hand to deliver a seamless experience and to ensure all your needs are met.
A voyage on Prana by Atzaro offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience in a truly special part of Asia, with the opportunity to explore one of the world’s most exquisite coral reefs at Komodo National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, from June to October.
December to April is the season to visit the 1,500 islands that make up Raja Ampat, which includes world-class diving, prehistoric caves and primordial tribes, while trips are offered to the Banda Islands (‘Spice Islands’) in May and November.
With fine dining, on-board spa treatments, unlimited water sports, unforgettable diving and the chance to visit some of the world’s most beautiful heritage sites, Prana encapsulates a special unison between ancient craftsmanship and contemporary luxury.