The Darwin 86 Empire has been recently delivered to her enthusiast American Owner.

Vasco Buonpensiere, co-founder and CEO of Cantiere delle Marche, expressing satisfaction with the Darwin Class and noting its strong position in the explorer yachts’ market, says: “The Darwin 86 Empire, now joining a fleet of twelve Darwins ranging from 86 to 112 feet, exemplifies the success of the range she belongs to. The Darwin Class is still giving us a great satisfaction confirming the validity of a model that stands the test of time.”

The Darwin 86, named Empire and acquired by a passionate American Owner, features a customized design tailored to the owner’s specifications.

Empire, designed with Hydro Tec’s signature Darwin aesthetics and CdM’s unique technical approach, is a testament to superior construction and design. The yacht’s project has been developed for long voyages also in high-latitude regions, so it includes an 'ice belt' at the waterline and reinforced hull and rudders for icy conditions. According to a quite unusual request from the Owner, the hull has been partially built with bulletproof steel plates, reflecting his intention to navigate remote and challenging seas. Another unique feature is a fourth pilot station in the engine room.

The interiors, designed by Alessandro Massari to the owner’s specifications for guest accommodations and style, radiates a sober, understated elegance. The designer created a warm, inviting ambiance by blending custom-made furniture with pieces from renowned brands like Poltrona Frau and Poliform. The Owner’s full beam stateroom is situated amidships on the Lower deck, providing ample space and comfort. Adjacent to this luxurious stateroom are two twin cabins, each equipped with a pullman bed to accommodate additional guests. At the forward end of the Lower deck, a VIP suite offers a private and elegant retreat.

The crew quarters, designed to house four members, are located forward on the Main deck. This area includes a substantial crew mess for communal dining and relaxation. The quarters are strategically connected to the wheelhouse on the Upper deck via a dedicated staircase, ensuring efficient communication and movement for the crew. Empire’s Main deck is the epicenter of social activity, featuring both indoor and outdoor spaces for lounging and dining. A cozy bar enhances the social atmosphere, while the galley is conveniently equipped for meal preparation and service.

The Upper deck is home to a spacious and well-equipped gym, catering to fitness enthusiasts, but it is also a cozy lounging area opening onto a properly furnished stern terrace. The wheelhouse, designed with Boening integrated monitoring and control systems, ensures ease of handling for the captain and crew. To enhance security, Empire is protected by a sophisticated anti-intrusion system. The Sun deck, furnished with loose furniture and sunbeds, offers an ideal setting for open-air relaxation and enjoyment.

Measuring 26.30 meters, Empire is a compact and robust vessel, characterized by comfort and reliability. She is powered by twin Scania engines, each delivering 294 kW, and is equipped with three Northern Light Generators, providing a total of 155 kW of power. The yacht also features sodium-lithium chloride batteries for enhanced energy efficiency.

On the occasion of the official sea trials (with the yacht half loaded), Empire reached a top speed of 11.6 knots with a modest fuel consumption of 146 l/h. Both noise [below 40dB (A)] and vibration tests showed very low levels confirming the excellent comfort provided by the yacht to her guests in both social and private spaces.

In summary, Empire is a well-designed yacht that combines luxurious accommodations, ample social spaces, and efficient crew quarters, with advanced technical features, making it a perfect blend of style, comfort, and functionality

General Plans

Main Data


• Length overall 26.03 m
• Beam 7.43 m
• Draught (full load) 2.49 m
• Displacement (full load) 195 t


• Diesel oil 38˙390 lt
• Fresh water 3˙400 lt


• Engines 2x SCANIA DI13070M 294 kW @ 1˙800 rpm
• Generator 2 x 65 kW Northern Light + 1 x 25 kW Northern Light + 180 kW sodium-lithium chloride batteries


• Maximum speed 11.5 knots
• Cruising speed 10 knots @ 1˙800rpm
• Range 4˙000 nm @ 10 knots


• Passengers 8 (+2 Pullman Bed) p/4 Cabins
• Crew 4/2 cabins

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