The Lobanov Star, which rises from the water like a celestial body, has no conventional decks or captain’s bridge.
Instead, a shell of hi-tech cladding conceals eight levels of luxurious living space, with 36 guest cabins and room for 200 people.
The perfectly symmetrical 435ft diesel-powered yacht has propellers fore and aft, enabling it to rotate within its own length and to minimise the effects of bad weather on its almost 200ft-tall superstructure. If built, it would become one of the world’s tallest yachts.
Fears that it might keel over at the first hint of a crosswind were misplaced, said James Roy, yacht design director of BMT Nigel Gee, the British engineering firm that turned the concept into a “buildable” design. The yacht has a retractable ballast keel that can be raised or lowered to alter its centre of gravity and keep it upright.
The vessel is the brainchild of Igor Lobanov, a Russian designer who said modern superyachts “all look the same”. A marketing friend agreed and scribbled an idea on a napkin.
“I looked at the sketch and set to work,” said Lobanov.
Roy admitted that the design might prove “a bit audacious” for most billionaires. He thinks it more likely to attract a corporation interested in using it as a promotional tool or even as a floating hotel.
“It could be moored, say, in Rio for the next World Cup, then move somewhere else for another big occasion,” he said