Steve Quigley, the managing director of One2three Naval Architects in Australia, says the recently delivered 276-foot (84-meter) trimaran White Rabbit G is so smooth in a significant seaway that she virtually eliminates any chance of seasickness. Pitch, roll and lift are dampened far more effectively than on today’s stabilized monohulls.
“Trimarans can be tapered to whatever stability you want,” Quigley says. He began drawing such hull forms nearly 20 years ago, first for the 180-foot (55-meter) fast passenger ferry Dolphin Ulsan.
The owner of White Rabbits A and B, both Feadship monohulls, also discovered multihulls early. He had moved on to a 118-foot (36-meter) catamaran that he used for sportfishing and scuba diving, and by 2005, had taken delivery of his first trimaran, the 197-foot (60-meter) White Rabbit E, based on Dolphin Ulsan. That yacht remains part of the family fleet, and cruised the Med this past summer.
White Rabbit G, which Echo Yachts built in Western Australia, has distinctly higher and more rounded hull tunnels than her predecessor. The tunnels allow the fitting of four 118-square-foot (11-square-meter) Naiad active foils. (The foils are set into waterproof boxes in the central hull, 3 feet above the deepest part of the vessel, and are not likely to make contact in any grounding.) These combine with an 86-square-foot (8-square-meter) trim tab aft on the central hull to form a custom Naiad Total Ride Control system.
“As far as I know, they are the largest active foils in use anywhere in the world,” Quigley says. “At anchor, this system also provides significant underwater damping, which has a massive stabilizing effect.”
One2three has applied trimaran concepts to smaller vessels, such as the 92-foot (28-meter), 38-knot sport boat Andiamo, built in 2009 for Sandy Oatley, scion of a famous winemaking and island-owning family. Plans for another large trimaran are in the pipeline, but are so far under wraps.
The trimaran concept is not new to larger vessels. In military applications, Austal, whose headquarters is next door to Echo Yachts, has built the 417-foot (127-meter) Independence Class trimarans of littoral combat ships for the U.S. Navy. McConaghy Boats, also with headquarters in Australia, has built the 139-foot (42.5-meter) composite power trimaran Adastra, and is working on a 154-foot (46.8-meter) Frers design at the company’s yard in Zhuhai, China.
White Rabbit G is an all-aluminum, five-deck yacht built at the Australian Marine Complex at Henderson, south of Perth in Western Australia, where Echo, Austal and an Espen Øino-related superyacht outfit, SilverYachts, are based. Light and strong aluminum hulls are the forte there, although Echo Yachts has produced a 167-foot (51-meter) composite support catamaran called Charley for White Rabbit G’s toys, and offers steel-hull capacity as well.
The yacht is intended to cruise with as many as 30 guests and 32 crew, or 112 guests for day trips. Her interior volume is slightly under 3,000 gross tons, and her maximum draft is 14 feet (4.24 meters). Her top speed is 18.7 knots, her cruise speed is 16 knots and her range is more than 5,000 nautical miles at 12 knots.
Sam Sorgiovanni—perhaps best known for mono-hulls such as the 248-foot (75.5-meter) Anastasia and the interior of the 361-foot (110-meter) Jubilee, both built at Oceanco—handled the exterior styling and interiors of White Rabbits E and G, and he has added 344-foot (105-meter) and 394-foot (120-meter) trimarans to his design portfolio in anticipation of increasing demand.
“Our approach to the exterior styling was to create a silhouette that from many angles presents a classic and timeless profile, rather than something avant-garde, which would have been an easier path to take, given her radical hull form,” Sorgiovanni says. “The ultimate goal was that she should sit well alongside conventional monohulls, generating a feeling of acceptance for such an amazing, technologically advanced vessel.”
The stateroom layout is unusual in that there are three VIPs on the upper deck, separate masters on the main and lower decks, and another six guest staterooms on the upper and lower decks, all of which are connected by stairs and a central elevator.
The main, upper and sun decks all have lounges and dining areas, some with protection from the elements. Anchors, life rafts and tenders are concealed in the hull, and the Nautical Structures forward mast doubles as a davit for the 25-foot (7.6-meter) Naiad RIBs.
Sundeck promenades to port and starboard evoke first-class areas on a luxury passenger liner. A spa tub and sunpads offset a 20-seat casual dining area forward. Another striking feature is an integrated skylight that covers the cinema and games room. A whale’s tail-inspired structure adorns the principal mast area.
The upper deck has casual seating aft, and forward of the wheelhouse are alfresco built-in lounges and tables with stainless steel bases and pop-up lighting on each tabletop. The main deck aft includes a grand entrance to the vessel from either the beach terrace at the stern or the side boarding stairs.
Interior design is a mixture of Art Deco and cultural influences. Soles in high-traffic areas are stone, wood and carpeting, while the master and VIP staterooms are finished in silky plush pile. Other materials include shagreen, onyx, antique bronze, brushed Australian oak and custom Bohemian crystal. Serdaneli gold and silver bathroom fittings, from France, are featured.
Propulsion-wise, White Rabbit G has a diesel-electric drive that burns approximately 40 percent less fuel than normally needed on an equivalent volume monohull, according to the builder. She has two Caterpillar C32s and one C18 genset in each of the outer hulls, supporting Kongsberg Power Management and Stadt propulsion systems through ZF gearboxes into two Rolls-Royce controllable-pitch five-blade propellers.
Using these six engines in the low-drag side hulls proved more efficient than using larger propulsion diesels in the central hull, and the vessel can run on two gensets, or even one. She is equipped with a Schottel bow thruster. Her two azimuthing Schottel stern thrusters can provide “get home” speed of 5 knots. She can remain precisely on station without anchoring, and—because the electric motor drivetrains in the central hull run silently—noise and vibration in living areas are virtually nonexistent. In addition, she creates little wake underway.
Luxury and seakindliness are a winning combination. With White Rabbit G, Quigley and company and Echo Yachts have pulled a good one out of their hats.
LOA: 276ft. (84m)
BEAM: 66ft. (20m)
DRAFT: 14ft. (4.34m)
GROSS TONNAGE: 2,940
SPEED (max./cruise): 18.7/16 knots
NAVAL ARCHITECTURE: One2three Naval Architects
EXTERIOR STYLING: Sorgiovanni Designs
INTERIOR DESIGN: Sorgiovanni Designs
BUILDER: Echo Yachts
Photos | Have a closer look at the 276-foot trimaran White Rabbit G in the gallery below:
For more information: echoyachts.com.au
This article originally appeared in the Summer 2019 issue.