BEHIND THE SCENES OF ALFONSO ALBAISA & THE MOTALI DESIGN PROJECT
Alfonso Albaisa, until recently Executive Director, INFINITI Design, and now SVP in charge of Nissan group design (including INFINITI), is passionate about yachting. Shortly after he joined the Nissan Design team about 25 years ago, he designed a luxury yacht for a wealthy Middle Eastern customer.
WHAT IS MOTALI?
Motali is a 33 metre, three storey luxury yacht. It is privately owned and designed to give passengers a true experience of travel. The design features a bullet-like expression with romantic tapering at the stern that tumbles inwards, similar to the classic vessels of the 1950s, done in a completely modern way. Guests enjoy a fundamentally different shaped yacht, with curved windows downstairs, creating a unique view from the inside out.
HOW DID THE OPPORTUNITY TO WORK ON THE MOTALI DESIGN PROJECT COME ABOUT?
We were approached by a client in Turkey to design the yacht in August 1990, during my second year working for Nissan. He told me: imagine Motali backing into its mooring at Monaco. The rear view of this vessel should be like no other. It was an exciting but extremely challenging brief!
WHAT MADE YOU GET INVOLVED?
I grew up on the ocean, cruising around Miami’s coastline on a six metre powerboat with my brother. Ever since, I’ve had a deep fascination with water, and I am still a keen sailor today. At INFINITI Design, we are inspired by the power and beauty of nature and the ocean in our car designs. Creating Motali was a chance to combine my lifelong passion with the job I love. It was too good an opportunity to pass up!
WHAT DID YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT THE PROJECT?
I’ve always been captivated by the look of yachts at rest, so having the chance to create my own vessel was very exciting. I also enjoyed having to think beyond the design of the yacht itself. Unlike with cars, the views out Motali’s windows are as important as its own appearance. I had to design something that would fit seamlessly into a range of majestic surroundings – from Monte Carlo Harbour to the open ocean or the bay of a deserted island.
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE?
The sheer scale. Whereas a car can be treated as a single thought with one gesture supported by details, on a yacht of Motali’s size the gesture is dictated by the architecture. It was more like designing a building than a vehicle.
A series of videos can be found below.
Main film extended: https://youtu.be/7bFPKPoPUkA
Short Q60: https://youtu.be/Om_qA2EhDtw
Short Motali: https://youtu.be/dm5MUhZd-k8
Short Nature: https://youtu.be/Mp0Nj9d6b3k
Short 15s: https://youtu.be/znTuEJobYVo
Motali 60s: https://youtu.be/IHortP_NvzE
INFINITI Motor Company Ltd. is headquartered in Hong Kong with representations in 50 markets around the world. The INFINITI brand was launched in 1989. Its range of premium automobiles is currently built in manufacturing facilities in Japan, the United States, United Kingdom and China. INFINITI design studios are located in Atsugi-Shi near Yokohama, London, San Diego and Beijing. INFINITI is in the middle of a major product offensive. The brand has been widely acclaimed for its daring design and innovative driver-assistance technologies. From the 2016 season, INFINITI is a technical partner of the Renault Sport Formula One team, contributing its expertise in hybrid performance.
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