Australia’s most awarded pleasure boat builder, Riviera, has just announced details of its latest innovative model, the 53 Enclosed Flybridge, a new generation of luxury, technology and personal customisation.
Designed from the keel up, using Riviera’s Uni-Graphics NX three-dimensional CAD software system, the new 53 has been developed in-house after nearly two years of detailed consultation with boat owners across the globe. A result is a fresh approach, signalling a new generation of Riviera prowess and efficiency. The 53 is a vessel of considerable internal volume, allowing Riviera’s designers to create unprecedented living spaces, elegant amenities and unrivalled performance.
The new 53 is the first Riviera Flybridge in the 50-foot range to offer a full-beam master stateroom, with king-size bed and large ensuite. The 53 is the first Riviera in this size bracket to offer an enclosed flybridge with spacious seating for a party of 10. Flybridge access is via an internal staircase. The 53 is also the first Riviera to offer the flexibility of choice with a range of different pod drive and engine plant configurations. This new model has been entirely designed around these proven and efficient drives.
Generous side decks and easy-feed hawse holes (another customer-inspired innovation) make berthing a breeze, while a dedicated docking station on the starboard side of the flybridge gives the skipper clear vision aft.
The 53 features hull lines that run straight aft from maximum beam, creating a powerful lift and planning surface along with great stability. Moulded window casings create style and function, bringing 360 degrees of light into the interior and offering water views from every saloon seating position.
The 53’s main deck design is the culmination of years of experience from the Riviera design team, bringing light and fresh air from the huge cockpit – which doubles as an entertainment venue complete with hidden barbecue – into the main saloon living space, through a sliding glass door and a hinged hopper window.
The U-shaped galley design is positioned aft and therefore central to the massive saloon entertainment space and the cockpit. The galley is located to the port side and separated from fore and aft passing traffic.
The Riviera 53 offers the latest in European appliances showcased in high gloss timber and solid surface bench top. Central to the galley is a Miele combination oven, featuring an induction cooktop, with microwave oven and electric grill. Proven Vitrifrigo drawer fridge and freezer along with Fisher and Paykel drawer dishwasher are all standard. Opposite the galley, to starboard, is a wet bar featuring options for ice maker, drawer fridge and freezer, and a floor-to-ceiling pull-out Hafele pantry. All galley drawers operate on soft close runners.
Also opposite the galley is a stylish internal staircase leading to the enclosed flybridge. Its floating teak treads mounted on solid stainless steel rails complement what will be a beautiful interior. Forward of the galley is a C-shape dinette to port, that can convert into a double berth with a drop-down table.
This arrangement faces a C-Shape settee on the starboard side creating a spacious social setting for up to 10 in sheer cruising comfort. All of the lounges on the 53 are plush and luxurious, with a generous depth of padding.
An option for a massive wide screen 50” TV on electric lift rises from the dash forward on the port side bringing sport and entertainment to the entire living area. The flybridge is available in two options, with helm forward for long-distance cruising or helm aft, which many skippers prefer when sport fishing. In either option, skipper and mate are seated on swivel pedestal chairs for maximum visibility.
A dinette table set amidst a C-Shape settee on the port side of the flybridge seats six comfortably, and a separate lounge to starboard complements the seating arrangement. A wet bar with drawer fridges and handbasin serves to refresh while underway. Prepared food is easily brought up to the flybridge from the galley directly below via the internal staircase. At rest or underway, the staircase can be secured for privacy or as a safety precaution via a folding, lockable hatch that disappears when opening into varnished cabinetry.
The roof of the flybridge boasts a sliding electric sun roof creating a sky-lounge, typical of much larger vessels. Side-opening windows and surround visibility will add to the light, airy atmosphere. The vessel’s massive engine room allows for flexibility of power plant choice, with the option for crew quarters or workshops isolated from the main living space. And the propulsion arrangement allows for maximum amidships space, which is used to deliver the most luxurious master stateroom for a vessel of this size.
When the party is over, there is nothing as comfortable as retiring to the full beam master stateroom, with a king-size bed set amidships, and ample space on either side. Port and starboard alarmed opening port holes bring light and fresh air below. A separate ensuite with solid surface non-slip tiled floor is set slightly below the level of the main cabin to contain water. A vanity unit with surface-mounted porcelain sink, typical of those found on much larger vessels, and a vacuum-flush toilet complete the amenity.
A large cedar-lined walk-in robe complements the master stateroom, which features a multitude of storage sets behind high-quality gloss woodwork – a feature of all Riviera boats. There is a massive 96,000 BTU capacity of air conditioning on the new 53 reflecting the increasing use of Riviera boats in harsh tropical conditions. All venting and ducting are discretely hidden behind the stylish cabinetry.
To balance the interior, the 53 features a clever combination of varnished wood and fabric panelling, to create a soft acoustic ‘feel’ with visual styling to match. Forward of the master stateroom is a guest stateroom, with a queen-size bed and wardrobe, and a third cabin with two single berths. A separate ensuite serves the guest accommodation and doubles as the day head, making this vessel perfect for larger families, or holidays involving two couples with children.
When it comes to propulsion, Riviera designers have settled on new-generation, fuel-efficient pod drives to propel the 53 to a top speed of around 35 knots and a cruise speed between 25-28 knots delivering a range of 400 nautical miles depending on engine options on a 3500-litre fuel tank. However, there are a number of propulsion options on the new 53.
Up to 30 per cent efficiency gains are the hallmark of the proven Volvo Penta IPS system. There is the option to choose twin IPS 1200 units or three IPS 600 units. A further propulsion option is available using the ZF 4000 pod drive system, with twin counter-rotating Nibral (Nickel, Bronze, Aluminium) propellers facing aft, instead of forward as they are on the IPS system. Either way, the opposing blades – the forward blade pitched differently from its aft partner – make optimum use of wash and water movement to deliver a smooth, quiet ride.
With all major engineering positioned well aft, enormous gains are made with beam-width space amidships, and that translates into better living. Mid-ship fuel tanks from keel to saloon sole double as a sound barrier between master bedroom and engine room and help deliver better trim to the vessel when cruising.
With the option of ZF drives, a customer can choose between Caterpillar or MTU power plants, with the option of twin 1015 hp C18 engines to achieve higher top speeds. The 53’s hull is laminated using vacuum infusion to deliver an exceptionally sound structure that incorporates areas of solid GRP and various core materials, depending on engineering requirements.
Infusion technology used in the hull also helps replicate the incredibly precise lines lofted from Riviera’s CAD computer system and provides an accurate foundation for parts milled on a 5-axis CAD – driven router. Controlling all DC electronics is the digital system, a revolutionary Controller Area Network (CAN) bus design that allows for the ultimate in customisation and finger-touch control of all aspects of electrical operation, from entertainment lighting to navigation equipment.
The 53 is another step forward for the Australian builder and continues the very aggressive innovation and growth across their ranges.