Azimut 78 Fly: Futuristic design and ultra-modern technology

“The 78 Fly is a cutting-edge yacht that is strategically positioned in the segment, midway between Azimut 72 and Azimut Grande 25METRI, and meets our customers’ growing expectations.” This is how Azimut Yachts CEO Marco Valle defined the latest model in the Flybridge Collection. A new entry in the CarbonTech generation, the yacht’s flybridge superstructure, roll-bar and hard top are all made from carbon fiber, as well as a section of the deck and the stern storage door.

Exterior lines

A quest for dynamism that takes its cue from car design and Umberto Boccioni

Futurism, the early nineteenth century movement that celebrated speed and dynamism, introducing concepts like simultaneity and surface interpenetration into contemporary architecture, was an important source of inspiration for the exterior design of the yacht. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, because the styling of the 78 Fly is the work of renowned designer Alberto Mancini, an eclectic talent trained in the cradle of car design (Istituto Europeo di Design, Turin) who has made “contamination” between the worlds of yacht and automotive design a signature feature of his work. 

The Trieste-born designer, who has been proposing new ideas to the world of yachting for almost twenty years now, says that his special source of inspiration was Umberto Boccioni (1882-1916), whose Unique Forms of Continuity in Space made a big impression on him during a visit to MoMA in New York. Boccioni’s revolutionary sculpture, which rejected the tenets of classical art, is an alternation of cavities, raised sections, planes and voids, conveying a clear sense of movement. In the same way, Mancini is infusing the form of the 78 Fly with verve, creating the sensation of movement even in an object at rest. Sculptural tension permeates this boat, suffusing the design from bow to stern, from sea to sky. The striking use of split moulds spurs a quest for new forms – starting with the hull. The interplays of light and dark, of ribbing and surface markings lend the hull sides real character and spirit, in an endlessly fascinating play of lines. They taper at the bow to a cutting edge thrusting forward to the tip, searching for the horizon; at the stern, they rise in seamless union with the outline of the deck. Fibreglass takes the strain, replacing the traditional steel in creating a quite new kind of handrail, more flowing and sinuous than ever. The windscreen pillars ramp up from the bow, developing into a unique ring that encloses and embraces the entire flydeck as far as the stern, before continuing upward in a continual tension of curves in and out, of solids and voids, right to the top. The windows spring forward from the dark-coloured side buttresses’ lateral structure at the stern, forming the alphabet of a whole new language of style, surging irresistibly ahead to shape a support for the flydeck yet without ever touching it. Once again, they draw a horizontal line underscoring the yacht’s deceptively ample volumes and elegant, sporty soul. All told, the mission of Mancini’s meticulous and invaluable work, like a sculptor crafting exciting new shapes out of a block of uncut marble, was to give a yacht with such generous volumes as streamlined an appearance as possible.


The settings, privacy and comfort of a megayacht in 78 feet

One of the project’s main goals was to create spaces worthy of a larger yacht on one that is under 24 meters in length (23.6 meters to be precise, with a beam of 5.75 meters. The challenge thrown down by the Avigliana-based Shipyard has been taken up and won in no uncertain terms, so much so that its level of comfort and privacy is now one of the 78 Fly’s points of strength. This is the result not only of much more welcoming and spacious settings than on other yachts of the same size (not least because the superstructure’s sidewalls are almost vertical), but also of its silence and stability at sea, and finally of the clear separation of the owner and guest spaces from those used by the crew. As we will see, the crew quarters positioned in the bow, with access from the wheelhouse and galley, can be separated from the day area and the stairs down to the night space. 

A fundamental contribution to achieving this level of comfort and convenience is made by the use of carbon fiber (which allows the creation of more generously spaced settings without increasing the overall weight of the yacht) and three IPS propulsion units, a solution which translates into a smaller engine room and reduced vibrations, delivering clear benefits in terms of space and comfort.

Analysing the layout in more detail, the galley is forward, next to the helmstation, with direct access to the crew area in the bow section of the lower deck. The galley, which also contains the crew mess, has a direct exit onto the side walkway too, while an interior door separates it from the lounge and the stairway leading down to the owner and guest cabins. The day area does away with the traditional separation of dining and living areas, resulting in great freedom of use. This is in part thanks to the dining table, which can be transformed if needed into a low coffee table, freeing up much more space and allowing easy movement between the two different sections of the living area. The big outdoor area in the stern is furnished with everything needed to spend long, lazy days in the open air, while the huge storage locker has a useful volume of 3.3 cubic meters. At the tip of the bow is a pleasing outdoor lounge with facing sofas and a sunpad.

The guest accommodation on the Lower Deck consists of two VIP cabins with double beds and big wardrobes, plus a twin-bed cabin, all with en-suite bathrooms. The owner’s full-beam suite amidships has a separate dressing room.

The crew area in the bow can be split into two spaces for more privacy.

The stern platform can accommodate a tender up to 3.90 meters long.

The Flybridge, finally, is a big space that can be furnished according to the owner’s preferences: the Shipyard proposes four options, with the stern section fitted alternatively with a big sunpad, a generous spa tub, a space with sofas or, finally, a sunbathing area with mobile BBQ.

Interior decor: sophisticated and welcoming settings, defined by bewitching curved lines

The interiors designed by Achille Salvagni will be available in two different versions.

The Lounge version presented at Cannes is the most innovative, featuring original blue lacquer elements paired with light colourways. The appeal of these settings derives from their original and refined atmosphere, obtained using the smooth, curved lines that are a hallmark of the Rome-based architect, who always strives to achieve a flowing, contemporary dynamic for which sharp straight edges are an anathema. 

The living area, which does away with the traditional separation of dining and living spaces, is furnished as one extremely elegant setting, offering seamless movement between two comfortable and welcoming lounge zones, while the table in front of the sofa can be raised if needed.

For owners with more traditional tastes, there is also a version with a large table seating eight and an L-shaped sofa. 

The full-height windows, taken together with furniture that seems suspended in midair, give these sophisticated, unusual spaces a strong personality, as is often the case in settings created by Salvagni, who has a passion for art and history and also extensive experience working on residential projects. The carpet is an innovative and original feature, with specially created geometrical designs forming novel decorative solutions.

The highest construction standards and leading edge technology

The yacht, which is also suitable for CE A and NMMA certification for boats under 24 meters, is designed and built to the highest standards in the sector and covered by the HTS High

Technical Standard declaration issued by the shipyard.

The yacht also features many solutions adopted in the framework of the ECS (Enhanced Cruising Solutions) programme, ranging from the Garmin integrated control and monitoring system, customised to interface with multiple onboard utilities, and temperature synchronisation in the various onboard areas, to the joystick piloting and active trim control systems that automatically adjust the boat’s trim and ensure the best possible consumption efficiency at any speed.

Also worthy of note is the offering of innovative optionals, including the possibility of upgrading from traditional air conditioning to the air make-up systems, for maximum air freshness even in closed and air-conditioned spaces.

Propulsion and performance: unique in its category

The 78 is the first yacht in the Flybridge Collection to be equipped with the triple Volvo Penta IPS propulsion system. Azimut Yachts’ Innovation Lab recognised the potential of this system right from the outset and worked with a team of engineers from Volvo Penta to optimise the hull lines so that it could be fitted to various models. 

In light of the success of this solution, Azimut Yachts has decided to equip the 78 with it too. The result is a significant reduction in both vibration and noise levels and in overall weight. The wider spacing between the outer units translates into superior handling and better acceleration. 

The compact dimensions also mean that the engine room can be placed further aft, providing more space for accommodation and a layout that offers unexpected volumes for a yacht this size.

Two engine solutions will be available (three 1,200 or 1,350 hp engines), while the top speed is 33 knots.

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