News: Sailing yacht RAN 2 Design Unlimited

July 10, 2009 by john
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Any casual observer walking along the dock and catching a glimpse of luxury sailing yacht RAN 2
would agree that the 72ft mini‐maxi, designed by Judel Vrolijk for the yacht’s owner Niklas Zennstrom,
co‐founder of Skype, is lacking in neither drama nor excitement. Launched earlier this year and
constructed by Green Marine in the UK using top‐spec materialsand the latest control systems
there is no doubt that she is an out‐and‐out raceboat.

But the excitement of her exterior of sailing yacht RAN 2 is but a
taste of what is to come, for to go below is to enter an almost psychedelic world of colour and
organic shapes that is guaranteed to have the average crew‐member rubbing his eyes in disbelief.

The brief that Niklas Zennstrom handed Mark Tucker and his team at Design Unlimited for sailing
yacht RAN 2 was a challenging one.

Not only did the interior have to be functional for racing and weigh the absolute
minimum to keep the boat competitive, but at the same time it also had to look state‐of‐the‐art.
Zennstrom had seen what had been accomplished on boats like the Reichel / Pugh sailing yacht
Alfa Romeo and wanted to go one better.

This meant that nothing could be added that did not contribute to the race optimisation of sailing
superyacht RAN 2, leaving Design Unlimited with only the basic components to work with.

Their goal was to make these look like nothing anyone had ever seen before without compromising
their functionality.

However, Mark and his team did have some additional room in which to exercise their creativity, as
the racing rules do allow for a slight improvement in handicap in return for the installation of a
minimal interior. With this in mind the owner decided to add a number of facilities that would aid
the performance of her crew on offshore races on the understanding that the weight gain would be
more than offset by the improvement in her rating.

These included pipe‐berths, a galley, a head with a sink and closable door, a navigation station, and
crew and sail storage. He also stipulated that the interior was to have a colour other than the black
of raw carbon, at least in the saloon, and that the lower berths in the saloon should be fixed, or at
least comfortable to sit on.

The overall result is highly dramatic; with the black of the carbon offset by expanses of white to
bring contrast and light to the enclosed spaces, together with the large splashes of red from the
settees that add colour and warmth to the saloon. Right angles have been all but eliminated,
replaced by curves that are both pleasing to the eye and an important contributor to safety in heavy

“We are delighted with the outcome,” said Design Unlimited’s Mark Tucker. “Reconciling the triple
objectives of functionality, weight minimisation and creativity in the windowless interior of a
raceboat is always an enormous challenge, but this really came together and we hope that the
owner and the crew will continue to find it a pleasure to live in as well as look at.”
The Design Unlimited team was also responsible for creating the distinctive graphics of the name
that are prominently displayed on her stern and crew clothing.

Image by Rick Tomlinson.

Design Unlimited specialises in yacht interior design for both custom superyachts and production yachts.
Founded in 2000by Mark Tucker the team has worked on some of the most well‐known sailing and motor
superyachts afloat today, as well as working in conjunction with many famous brands including Sunseeker,
Grand Banks, Hanseand Moody.

To find out more about sailing yacht RAN 2 go to

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