Welcome aboard the Wicked FPB 97. Would you like to have a look at the interior? She’s a little different inside than you might be expecting based on what you’ve seen from the dinghy.
We prefer this beautiful interior to be our own secret, keeping our neighbors wondering, and if they mistake us for a warship, all the better.
Giving a sense of what it will feel like to cruise in this Great Room is not easy. There is nothing in the normal seagoing experience to prepare you for it. The combination of flowing lines, open space, and the surrounding 360 degree view, is without parallel. These renderings, while generated from a highly accurate 3D model, don’t begin to compare to what it will be like when the entire ocean is your vista, you are anchored in a remote, beautiful anchorage, or sitting with the engine in neutral, awestruck by a tabular iceberg, all with unparalleled cruising freedom at your call.
One of the things we do to check the renderings is to compare finish and lighting to photographs of FPB 64s and the FPB 83. You can do the same with hundreds of shots on the SetSail website.
Now for a few details.
The sense of space is literally as large as your view of the world through those 19mm/.75″ thick windows surrounding the Great Room. The edge-to-edge window dimensions are 5.4m / 17.6′ wide by 10.1m / 33′ long (more volume than the FPB 64 and 83 combined).
The Great Room is set over the mid-point of the hull: in other words, where it is most comfortable at sea. The layout is visually open, and designed to contain your body. Offshore there are “staple rails” which slide into sockets in the sole to break up the open spaces, and three removable handrails (one for the bookcase, table, and at the helm).
The galley shows the input of the seagoing chefs on the Wicked team, Linda Dashew and Todd Rickard, and is arranged so that you are secure while working. This includes using the fridge (that is the purpose of the centered locker, so you can wedge yourself between it and the fridge box).
There is lots of convenient storage, starting with the 4.2m/13.6′ of super efficient hinged-lid counter top lockers you are used to seeing on our yachts. While the chef has full visibility over these lockers, they do hide counter top mess from the view of guests seated forward.
Next, there’s a three foot/90cm wide stack of drawers on the inboard side of the center island, adjacent to the stove. More storage is under the sink (plumbing is arranged to be out of the way) with that three foot/90cm wide cabinet centered on the aft bulkhead being the perfect spot for appliances and large pots. Need more? Linda and Todd will for certain. Then take half of the large locker in the aft starboard corner, leaving the other half for coats and shoes, unless you keep the latter under the stairs beside the entry door.
The fridge and freezer, aft port corner, contain 20 cubic feet (560 liters) of volume with a combination of drawers and shelves facilitating access. There is another 30 cubic feet / 800 liters in the systems room on the lower deck.
Adjacent to the fridge are a pair of dish washing drawers. The four burner Bosche induction cook-top will keep the chef humming, as will the 60cm Miele Master Chef oven.
Both fridge and pantry lockers have been held low. This is to keep the space above visually open, and so that their tops can be used for baskets or other light, attractive items, which are needed from time to time in the galley.
Looking across the galley you can see the aft starboard corner locker. This is where a great room level head would nicely reside. Just forward of this is another storage area, an ideal location for a bar, should you be so inclined.
In spite of how much we like open spaces, there is too much here for an ocean-crossing yacht. The solution is a pair of these removable “staple rails”. Drop them into their flush sockets when getting ready for a passage, and remove when you are in protected waters.
The FPB team looks at each design as if we were going to live aboard and cruise full-time. This leads to a variety of opinions as we are all at different stages in our lives, and have varying interests, which frequently ends up in healthy debate. When we were blocking out the basic volumes for the FPB 97, it was quickly apparent that the forward end of the Great Room was an extraordinary space. The combination of window area, their outward cant, and the shear floor space available, made possible a wide variety of interpretations.
Surprisingly the normal debate process quickly settled on the layout you have been experiencing. The reason was simple: it offered maximum flexibility of use. For those of us who prefer cruising on our own, the open vistas, internal and external, coupled with the softly flowing lines of the furniture, are ideal.
Others, with family in tow, like the the diverse groupings possible. The kids could be working at the table, one parent reading quietly in the forward corner of the lounge, keeping an eye on the progeny, while the other maintains watch on passage from the nearby Great Room bridge.
Some of us are inclined toward entertaining guests. In this situation you have a variety of groupings possible within the great room: from the galley, with its breakfast bar, to the dining area, to the lounge above (and don’t forget the seating outside on the main deck and Matrix deck).
One of our team members characterized his vision for the area as follows:
The forward lounge area of the great room is intended as multiple seating/discussion areas for use in diverse living modes.
(Chatting) It is not expected that people would fill the settee, but rather, that one or two persons would sit and chat with the captain, a group would form at the low coffee table, and a private discussion among two or three persons would happen at the aft curve in the settee. This could easily be one front, two side, and three aft for six total with each group having just enough separation to feel private if so desired.
(Viewing) When guests sit in a row along the straight section of the settee, they are positioned in theater mode to view the large pop-up television in the port cabinet.
(Group) The notch between the TV cabinet and the dining table is intended for a lounge chair, such as an Ekornes Stressless, with fixed base and rotational ability. When the chair is facing the settee, the space sense of the room is “living room” and (in port or at anchor) with the captain’s chair rotated too, creates a seating circle for a large party of guests to see and hear each other.
(Sleeping) The large settee’s straight section accommodates two sleepers foot-to-foot with head pillow at curve and separation between feet.
(Watch standing) The captain’s chair and help station offer a complete environment for standing watch. At sea, it is also possible to sit on the long settee with your back in the aft-most tight curve, and look directly forward.
(Visual connectivity) The shape of the large settee is such that there is a place to sit to have a comfortable view in any chosen direction through the full 360 degrees. This means that a seated individual can stay visually connected with persons at the helm, lounge chair, dining table, book case, galley bar, galley, drinks bar, or stair head. The view-centered design of the FPB extends this complete view to the surrounding environs of the ship.
After all of this excitement, it might a good idea to have a look below, and see if we can find somewhere to take a short nap.
Traffic between decks is conducted via a stairway proportioned for secure traffic at sea. There are handrails on each side to assist, nonskid strips in the sole, and your body is constrained.
The accommodations deck is centralized, with the head of the bed in the owner’s suite right on the middle of the waterline.
The suite runs for 25 feet ( 7.7 meters). This is nicely divided between the sleeping/lounge area aft, and the dressing room/head/shower area forward.
We think the forward suite is something special, and since the owners are not yet aboard, we’ll give you a quick look. You are sitting on the sofa in the aft port corner, looking forward toward the dressing room with its sauna and full width walk-in closet, amongst other features.
Moving now to the full-sized bed, with twelve drawers under the bunk, we can relax and enjoy a lovely piece of art on the bulkhead.
Prefer TV or a movie? Push the art work up and there is the TV. There is also a large closet outboard, balanced by locker with shelves to port (not shown in this image).
The locker outboard opposite the bed, against the hull, contains a series of shelves.
Walking forward, we are now between the head compartment and the sauna/shower/tub. In the far corner (top right in the photo) is the sofa from which the previous photo was taken looking this way.
Turning around and facing forward from the vanity, we see the walk-in closet forward, a makeup table just aft of the dressing room, with a chest of drawers adjacent to starboard. Immediately to starboard is the head compartment.
Walking a couple of steps forward and we have the sauna/bathtub open on the port side, the dresser ahead and to port, and a mirrored bureau to starboard.
A closer look at the corner mirrored makeup table.
A final small detail in the owner’s suite: the walk-in closet. There are two stacks of drawers, more than 14 meters (45 feet) of shelving, and 3.3 meters (11 feet) of usable hanger storage.
This is what it would look like standing inside the closet, trying to decide what to wear. Except the shelves would probably be filled with accessories, any one of which would be nicely set off by the monochrome wardrobe.
A final image, this time a straight section showing the relationship of the walk-in closet to the makeup table and sauna/bath. The mirrored dresser is just behind us, and the double sink vanity out of sight to the left.
When you come down the stairs, you enter what is best described as a foyer for the owner’s suite. There is a storage locker integrated with stairs on the starboard side, and a large desk, set of book shelves and outboard locker to port.
Turning aft takes you down the hallway to the guest suites. Each has a computer desk, generous hanging locker, drawers under the bunk(s) and attached head compartment. There is additional storage outboard of the toilets. These are spacious, very comfortable quarters, with a pair of hull windows in each.
The systems room/crew quarters are the last section of the accomodations area. We’ll cover this critically important area in a separate post.
When we cruise, we are often asked “how many does she sleep?” Our reply has always been the same, “two”, whether we’ve been aboard a Sundeer 60, Beowulf (78′), or Wind Horse (now 87 feet). Our answer would be the same even with the FPB 97. But let’s look at the other extreme. Assume that either through the desire for a large group aboard during a cruise, or perhaps with the FPB 97 used as a family bastion in a world gone mad, we needed as many berths as possible. How many would the FPB 97 then sleep?
- Large settee in the Great Room has sleeping room for two adults with heads near the curves.
- Two children could sleep at the salon table (or one medium size adult).
- There is settee space for two or three on the Matrix deck.
- With the standard layout there are two double bunks below, two guest singles, and two singles in the crew cabin.
- Between the Matrix deck and Great Room you could easily fit another six or eight in sleeping bags.
And we haven’t even allowed for what could be arranged in the forepeak.
Before we leave this post, a word is in order on the use of space within the Wicked FPB 97 foot/30m hull. As wonderful as the interior is, equally important to making the most of your cruising experience is the Wicked bulk storage. We’ve mentioned this in more detail in the “foundation” posts, but it bears repeating in the context of the tour you have just experienced aboard this Wicked FPB. That enormous “empty” area in the forward quarter of the hull performs a number of critically important functions:
- The forepeak moves the entire interior aft into a more comfortable region of the hull. As previously mentioned, when you are lying abed your head is right on the center of the hull.
- The extra length allows us to shape an even more sea kindly hull than the smaller FPBs, one with exceptionally fine entry to mitigate motion and soften decelerations as you punch through waves, yet maintain steering control when pushing at speed heading down big seas.
- Then there is storage. It is in the forepeak where a large inventory of day-to-day gear like fenders and dock lines will live, together with emergency gear, thousands of feet of spare line and rodes, extra fenders, and the all-important sports gear. And all of this is in a neat, organized, easily-found fashion.
At the other end of the hull sits another quarter of the boat devoted to systems and propulsion. The space allocated to this function is both luxury and necessity. Good access makes frequent inspection easy, so it gets done. Pre-passage checks, checking bolt torques, and repairs are facilitated. We do not exaggerate when we say that this luxurious systems space will do more to make the ownership experience pleasant, by minimizing the frustrations associated with things gone wrong, than any other aspect of the design.