Prestige M8 offers home on the water
The new flagship of Prestige’s M-Line of multihull motor yachts and a world premiere at this year’s Cannes Yachting Festival, the M8 takes luxury real estate on the water to a new level.
Words: Clare Mahon
The M8 can reach 20 knots and cruise at 15 knots with twin Volvo Penta D8-600 engines
If luxury real estate could float, it would look and feel like the Prestige M8, the new 65ft flagship of the French shipyard’s M-Line of multihull motor yachts. Big-city life lived large is the first thing you think when boarding, such is the space and the glam that surrounds you. Or imagine a gleaming penthouse crossed with an ultra-exclusive beach club.
Only aboard a multihull motor yacht like the M8 can you mix polished chrome and wide-open views with an easy-going pieds dans l’eau lifestyle. This floating home away from home might leave you thinking that you never want to go back to your house again.
The yacht has beam of 29ft and an Opacmare transformer central platform
A quick look at the numbers can explain the feeling of space and solidity you get when you board the M8, which was designed by longtime Prestige collaborator Camillo Garroni – also behind the M48 – and features naval architecture by Marc Lombard.
Start with an LOA of 19.82m and combine it with a beam of 8.85m (29ft), and you get plenty of length and width, which equals lots of floor space and a steady ride, a perfect combination for old salts and land lubbers alike.
Boarding the M8 is as easy as stepping out of a door and into a different dimension. You feel suspended somewhere between the air and the sea in a space where an abundance of glass and reflective surfaces can almost leave you wondering where you’ve landed.
The wide aft platform can be raised to extend the aft cockpit
The Opacmare transformer central platform can be raised to extend the floor space in the aft cockpit and create a suspended balcony over the sea.
Lower it at the push of a button and it becomes the central section of the beach platform, an ideal spot for sunning, launching toys or even storing the tender. Lower it even further into the water and it makes swimming and retrieving toys a breeze.
The cockpit, which owners can furnish with loose pieces as they please, is separated from the saloon by sliding glass doors. Railings and transom gates are also glass and there are glass inserts in the fashion plates.
The flybridge can be set up with dining to port and a lounging area to starboard
Everything is slender, glittering and visually barely there, yet you sense solidity and security underfoot. It’s an ideal combination when at sea. The temptation is to swarm all over the boat, up the stairs to the fly, down the side passages to the foredeck, because everything is easily available and well connected. And there’s no shortage of space for conviviality and relaxation.
Accessed by stairs on the port side of the cockpit or a gorgeous see-through staircase on the starboard side of the saloon, the large flybridge has a wet bar and outdoor kitchen, and the main helm station. Guests can choose to set up a port dining area and a starboard lounge under the hard top, and can furnish the aft end entirely as they please.
With its height and views, the flybridge is usually like the icing on the cake of a yacht, but aboard the M8 the foredeck is the top spot – even if it isn’t literally so.
The stunning foredeck has a wide sunbathing area and an innovative sunken bow area, with seating on all four sides
Designed on two levels, the foredeck’s social areas start with a very wide sun pad under the saloon windscreen and a truly fabulous aft-facing, C-shaped couch sunk into the bow, with a smaller sofa opposite.
Sitting there, cruising along with only air between you and the sea, is wonderfully relaxing and truly satisfying in a way that only feeling like the master of your little universe can be.
Back to the stern and a centrally placed bar is a buffer area that serves both the cockpit and the saloon, another expansive, open space that owners can set up as they chose.
Forward view of the saloon, which starts with a full-width lounge
While the first hull in the M8 series has the galley fore and starboard in the saloon with a small helm station next to it, owners can also opt to leave this corner zone as an ‘all play’ area and have the galley below, towards the aft of the starboard hull.
Either way, the saloon is truly vast, with expansive glazing and slender, open structural elements that subtly define the different areas while leaving views and visual lines free and open.
Port view of the dining table and owner’s-suite stairs
Decorated by Valentina Militerno de Romedis with loose furnishings by Pininfarina, the interiors are bright, serene and functional, with sliding side doors increasing the indoor-outdoor feeling.
Forward, a central staircase leads from the saloon down to the full-beam owner’s cabin, a 35sqm (380sqft) suite that comes complete with a double bed, an en-suite bathroom and walk-in wardrobe to port, and a study and relaxation area to starboard.
The centrally placed bed is laid sideways to the centreline, facing the starboard hull windows, an unusual arrangement that only this cat’s extreme stability makes feasible.
Aft view of the saloon, showing the aft bar that can be shared by guests in the cockpit
On either side of the saloon, staircases lead down into the hulls. Owners can choose between a variety of layouts and guest sleeping arrangements, such as with or without a galley, a TV room, an extra crew cabin or a VIP suite instead of two guest cabins to port.
Regardless of the chosen configuration, the spacious full-beam owner’s suite forward is a constant as are two crew cabins fully fore, accessed via hatches in the bow.
While the Prestige team chose space and volume over speed when designing the M8, the boat’s performance in terms of efficiency and ease of use is very respectable. Equipped with twin Volvo Penta D8-600 IPS engines, the boat has a top speed of close to 20 knots, a range of about 350nm at a cruising speed of 15 knots and turns on a dime.
Port view of the full-beam owner’s suite, where the bed faces the starboard windows
Special attention was paid to soundproofing these already relatively quiet engines, while an efficient thermodynamic air-conditioning system keeps emissions to a minimum. With a set-up like this, you can enjoy tootling around in comfort and safety, taking all the comforts of home with you yet leaving behind things like heeling and seasickness.
Furthermore, the M8 is also available in a ‘silent’ version, with solar panels and lithium battery bank, and this model is scheduled to appear at this year’s Cannes Yachting Festival.
The working and living area on the starboard side, where the sofa faces a TV on an aft bulkhead
If you find yourself looking fondly at the M8 over your shoulder once you step back on land, you’ll see that the Garroni-designed exteriors recall the Prestige look while avoiding that certain visual clumsiness that plagues so many catamaran designs. And recalling your time aboard, you may well find yourself standing on the ground but walking on air.